Classic Berry-Topped Cheesecake
A little bit of lemon rind goes a long way in this sweet and tart cheesecake recipe.
Serves: 12 servings
- 6 large (2 1/2-x-5-inch) reduced-fat graham crackers
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon tub-style nonfat margarine, or 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons reduced-fat margarine or light butter
- 1/4 cup honey crunch wheat germ or finely toasted almonds or walnuts
- 2 blocks (8 ounces each) nonfat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon dried grated lemon rind, or 1 tablespoon fresh
- 1 can (14 ounces) fat-free or low-fat sweetened condensed milk
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons fat-free egg substitute
- 1 cup vanilla yogurt cheese
- 2 cups fresh strawberry halves or fresh whole raspberries
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons seedless strawberry or raspberry jam
- To make the crust, break the graham crackers into pieces, place in the bowl of a food processor, and process into fine crumbs. Measure the crumbs. There should be 3/4 cup. (Adjust the amount if needed.)
- Return the crumbs to the food processor, add the sugar, and process for a few seconds to mix well. Add the margarine or butter, and process for about 20 seconds, or until moist and crumbly. Add the wheat germ or nuts, and process for a few seconds to mix well.
- Coat a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray, and use the back of a spoon to press the crumb mixture against the bottom and sides of the pan, forming an even crust. (Periodically dip the spoon in sugar, if necessary, to prevent sticking.) Then use your fingers to finish pressing the crust firmly against the bottom and sides of the pan.
- Bake at 350ï¿½F for about 8 minutes, or until the edges feel firm and dry. Set aside to cool to room temperature before filling.
- To make the filling, place the cream cheese and vanilla extract in a large bowl, and beat with an electric mixer until smooth. Sprinkle the cornstarch and lemon rind over the cheese mixture, and beat until smooth. Add the sweetened condensed milk, and beat until smooth. Add the egg substitute, and beat until smooth. Finally, add the yogurt cheese, and beat until smooth.
- Spread the cheesecake batter evenly over the crust, and bake at 325ï¿½F for about 1 hour, or until the center is firm to the touch. (If you use a dark pan instead of a shiny one, reduce the oven temperature to 300ï¿½F.) Turn the oven off, and allow the cake to cool in the oven with the door ajar for 1 hour. Remove the cake from the oven, cover, and chill for at least 6 hours, or until firm.
- Arrange the berries in concentric circles over the top of the cheesecake. Place the jam in a small pot, and place over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 1 minute, or until the jam is runny. Drizzle the jam over the berries, and chill for at least 2 additional hours.
- When ready to serve, run a sharp, thin-bladed knife between the cheesecake and the collar of the pan. Remove the collar, cut the cheesecake into wedges, and serve.
Excerpted from The Best-Kept Secrets of Healthy Cooking by Sandra Woodruff, R.D. Copyright © 2000 by Sandra Woodruff.
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