Thursday, December 8, 2011

Holiday Sweet Season - Crustless Cheesecake with Cranberry Topping

The holidays are here! Can you hear it? No, not the holiday carols... the sounds of ovens across the country heating up, Kitchenaids mixing, and sugar pouring. The holiday sweet season is upon us! Cookies, cakes, bars, and pies are among the many delicious delicacies going in ovens (and mouths!) this month. But I've got something a little different for you. Cheesecake. Crustless cheesecake. With cranberry topping.

It's enough to get any grinch in the holiday spirit. This cheesecake is light and fluffy, unlike it's dense cheesecake cousins, which don't get me wrong I throughly enjoy, this is just something a little different. The cranberry topping is tart and juicy and compliments this simple cheesecake perfectly. And why have a crust anyway when what you really want is creamy cheesecake filling?

This is my second time making this cheesecake. The first time was quite an experience since I did not own an electric mixer and had never made a cheesecake before. This particular cheesecake recipe calls for you to beat your egg whites until they form "soft peaks." A task, I quickly found is meant for an electric mixer. Thank goodness I have a mixer now, albeit a pretty crappy one. I'm just waiting for the KitchenAid Santa to come deliver my fabulous, wonderful, amazing KitchenAid mixer, in red. Where are you KitchenAid Santa?

Anyways, the egg whites whipped up in a jiffy. But for some reason this recipe tells me I have to mix in my cream cheese with a metal spoon. I'm never one to disobey a baking recipe, so much to my arm's chagrin I mixed in that cream cheese by hand. 

This cheesecake is the perfect holiday dessert. It cuts into thin squares making it perfect to bring to your next holiday dinner party or a potluck where there may be more than one dessert. Nobody wants to fill up on their first dessert when there are more to be sampled. Make your dessert edible in small quantities so it won't be passed by. But honestly, with a cranberry topping only a fool would pass this cheesecake by. Bite sized pieces or not.

I just love the color of cranberries. They are so bright and in the holiday spirit.

They are even prettier with sugar and orange ribbons on them. Yum, Yum.

Crustless Cheesecake with Cranberry Topping Recipe
Cheesecake recipe from Vegetarian Food For Friends
(Printable Recipe)

6 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
1 cup sugar
3 eggs, separated
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 - 8 oz bars of cream cheese (I used 2 reduced fat and 1 regular) - softened
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking powder

- It is important to have your butter and cream cheese sitting out of the fridge for at least an hour before you start.
- Preheat oven to 300.  Grease a 12x8 pan or glass dish and line with parchment paper.
- Put the butter, sugar, egg yolks, and vanilla extract in a bowl.  Beat with electric beaters until the mixture is pale and creamy.
- Beat egg whites in a clean dry bowl until soft peaks form.
- Using a metal spoon, very lightly (which I found near impossible) stir the cream cheese, cornstarch, and baking powder into the butter mixture.  Add the egg whites and mix lightly.
- Spoon into the prepared pan and spread evenly with a spatula.  Bake for 1 hour.  Let cool in pan.  Cake will flatten.  Remove slice carefully after cooled being sure not to break them.

Cranberry topping:

1 bag fresh cranberries
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup orange juice (I used the juice from the orange I zested and had to add a bit extra from a carton)
1 tablespoon orange zest (preferably ribbons)
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

- Mix all ingredients into a pot and cook on medium heat stirring often until cranberries begin to burst.  About 20 minutes.  
 -Top cheesecake with cranberries cool or warm and enjoy!

Peace, love, holiday sweets, and happiness!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Pin It button on image hover