Lemon fans, rejoice! Not overly sweet and with just the right amount of tang, the lemon cheesecake at the Dutch Frontier in Ducor, California, north of Bakersfield, packs fresh lemon flavour in a rich and creamy, crumble-crusted dessert. Plan to save room for seconds with this one. Los Angeles Time/McClatchy-Tribune Information Service
- 24 lemon sandwich cookies, crushed (vanilla cookies with a lemon filling, similar to Oreos)
- 2 tbsp melted butter
- Lemon filling:
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 generous tbsp cornstarch
- ½ cup water
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tbsp finely grated lemon peel (from 3 to 4 lemons)
- Lemon juice from 3 to 4 lemons
- 4 (250g) packages cream cheese, softened
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 3 eggs
- Prepared lemon filling, divided
- Prepared crust
- Whipped cream, to garnish
- Make the crust
- Heat the oven to 175°C. Finely mash together the cookies (with filling) and butter using a food processor or by hand in a large bowl. Pour the mixture into a 25cm springform pan, smoothing it on the bottom and up the sides of the pan to form a crust. Bake 10 minutes to set the crust, then set aside to cool.
- Make the lemon filling
- In a small saucepan, whisk together the sugar and cornstarch, then whisk in the water. Continue to whisk over high heat until the mixture begins to bubble and thicken, then continue to whisk for 15 to 20 seconds before removing from heat. Whisk in the egg yolk, then return to heat and whisk for 10 to 15 seconds to set the custard. Remove from heat and stir in the lemon peel and enough juice to give the filling a thick, pourable consistency. Set aside to cool.
- Make the cheesecake
- Beat together the cream cheese and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, then beat in 2 tbsp prepared lemon filling until smooth and creamy. Pour into the prepared pan. Drizzle a tablespoon of lemon filling over the top and, using the tip of a knife, zigzag across the top for effect.
- Bake at 175°C for 50 minutes (the pie will still be jiggly), then, with the pie still in the oven, turn the oven off and leave the door slightly ajar for 2 hours after baking to finish setting up. Refrigerate at least 3 hours before serving.
- Place the remaining filling in a pastry bag or food-safe plastic bag (snip the top before using). Serve the slices drizzled with extra lemon filling and topped with a dollop of whipped cream.