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Eat the Seasons - March 2017


Fruit & Nuts
Forced Rhubarb
Vegetables & Herbs
Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Celeriac, Chicory, Jerusalem Artichoke Kale Leek, Onion, Pak Choi, Parsnip, Purple Sprouting Broccoli, Salsify, Spinach, Spring Onions, Swede, Turnips, Sweet Potato, Wild Nettles
Meat & Game
Hare, Spring Lamb
Fish
Cockles, Cod, Dab, Dover Sole, Gurnard, Hake, Halibut, Langoustine, Lemon Sole, Lobster, Mussels, Oysters, Red Mullet, Salmon, Shrimp, Whitebait, Winkles

It’s that time of year when I fall in love with pink again, even though it isn’t the best colour for my complexion.  Beautiful, pink, forced Yorkshire Rhubarb at it’s best!

 

Triple Ginger Cheesecake with Poached Rhubarb

Serves 8-12

 

Preparation time about 30-45 minutes

Cooking time approximately 30 minutes in total plus chilling minimum 3 hours

 

Ingredients for the base
100g Duchy Original Stem Ginger Biscuits or Ginger Nuts Finely Crushed

50g Digestive Biscuits

60g butter, melted

You will also need a 20cm (8”) spring form tin, greased

 

Ingredients for the filling

4000g forced rhubarb trimmed and cut into 2.5cm batons

50g caster sugar (for the rhubarb)

1 tbsp grated stem ginger

1 tbsp stem ginger syrup from the jar

800g cream cheese (or full-fat soft cheese such as Philadelphia)

75ml double cream

200g caster sugar (for the filling mixture)

1 vanilla pod, split in half lengthways and seeds scraped out

2 whole eggs

2 egg yolks

 

Method:

  1. For the base, place the biscuits and butter in a bowl, stir well and then press into the base of the tin.  Place in the fridge to chill.
  2. Prepare the rhubarb.  Put 50g caster sugar, the stem ginger syrup and 1tablespoon of water in a wide shallow pan and bring to a gentle simmer.  Add the rhubarb and poach gently for 10 minutes or until the rhubarb is just cooked when tested with the point of a knife.  Do not allow the rhubarb to go mushy.  Place a sieve over a bowl and drain the rhubarb well.  Reserve the juice.
  3. Whilst the rhubarb and the base are cooling prepare the filling, preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/Gas Mark 6.
  4. Put the cream cheese, cream, sugar, vanilla seeds, eggs and egg yolks in a clean blender or food processor and blend until smooth and mixed – do not blend for more than a minute, otherwise the mixture might split if it overheats.
  5. Now scatter the grated stem ginger over the biscuit base, and then evenly spread half of your drained poached rhubarb on top.
  6. Pour the filling mixture over the rhubarb in the cake frame or tin, then tap the frame a couple of times to remove any trapped air bubbles
  7. Bake the cheesecake in the oven for 22–25 minutes. Once cooked, the top will have coloured golden brown slightly and will have risen (souffléd) slightly, but it will sink back down once set. The cheesecake will also still have a slight wobble in the centre when it’s ready (once chilled, this will have set perfectly).
  8. While the cheesecake is cooking, place the reserved rhubarb juices in a small pan and cook over a gentle  heat so that it reduces to a thick syrup.  Leave to cool.
  9. Remove from the oven and leave the cheesecake to cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, then chill in the fridge for a minimum of 3 hours before cutting. The chilled baked cheesecake will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  10. Cut the chilled cheesecake into 8-12 even portions. Decorate with the remaining poached rhubarb and spoon a little of the syrup over each slice.