A blueberry lemon cheesecake double decker (de-constructed)
Should I or shouldn’t I?
I love blueberries.
I never actually tried a proper, fresh blueberry until I went to Australia but once I did, I was well and truly hooked.
That they’re so healthy and good for you is irrelevant because I just love how they taste.
I also love the fact that they’re so dinky, and that each one has a little star shaped pout where the stem’s fallen or been pulled off.
Sadly, I don’t think the climate in the UK is well suited to growing blueberries. I’d have them planted all over my garden if that were the case. However, every year when spring hits, and the gardening spam gets shoved through the letterbox, there are always these amazing photos of blueberry bushes for sale. They’re always pictured overladen with fruit.
I’m always tempted but should I or shouldn’t I try to grow them when the British climate tends to be so soggy and damp? And if they can be grown here, why doesn’t everybody have them growing in their gardens?
After being sick all of last week, I couldn’t wait to get back into my kitchen and finally be able to cook (and taste food) again. I had one recipe on my mind all week; and on Saturday, I let loose and spent the entire afternoon in the kitchen getting all the components for this recipe ready.
Our friend Simon had also come to stay because my husband had invited him over for a video games night with him (ahem, they play video games almost EVERY night anyway…) but I was easily coerced into giving up TV rights since Simon offered to cook us dinner. Twist my arm – it was hardly a difficult bribe to accept since he made the most amazing baked cod dinner for us. I’ll be posting that recipe next week.
So, here it is – my deconstructed blueberry lemon cheesecake double decker.
I know I preach about un-poncey and unfussy food, so this might look a bit OTT but I do like tinkering around in my kitchen to make things look good too. Plus having Si over for dinner gave me a good excuse to try and present something more palatable and appetising than my usual home-cooked and sloppier affairs.
I almost tried to make this a triple decker but am glad I didn’t. The lemon butter biscuits I made were SUPERB (if I do say so myself) but I will roll them out even thinner than I did this time so that they’re even easier to break apart.
I decided to make a lemon cream cheese filling but in all honesty, mascarpone would probably have worked better. That said, I’m being hyper critical of myself. This dessert put a big smile back on my face, especially after a week of seriously dulled taste buds. There’s also a special buzz I get knowing that I’ve made everything from scratch, apart from growing the actual blueberries itself.
Enjoy the rest of your week!
Lots of love
Blueberry lemon cheesecake double decker (deconstructed)
To make the lemon butter biscuits (easily makes about 40 biscuits)
200 grams softened butter at room temperature
150 grams castor sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Zest of 1 lemon, finely chopped
1 tablespoon maple syrup (or honey)
300 grams plain flour
Cream the butter and sugar together till pale, light and fluffy. Then beat in the vanilla, egg, zest, lemon juice and maple syrup.
Slowly add the flour into the mix.
Beat the mix until smooth and doughy. The dough is sticky and very soft.
Remove from the bowl, wrap in cling film and then refrigerate to chill the dough (about 40 minutes to an hour).
Meantime, preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius (I bake mine at 170 degrees because I have a very hot oven).
Dust your worktop, roll out the cookie dough to about 3-5 mm thickness (the next time I’m going to try and make them even thinner) and then use the cookie cutters of your choice.
On an oven tray lined with baking parchment, set your cookies out about 1-2 cm apart and then bake for about 10 minutes or until pale and golden on the edges.
75 grams fresh blueberries
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon water
Heat the blueberries, sugar and water in a saucepan and use a fork to mash up the blueberries. Cook until the blueberries sauce becomes syrupy. You can strain it but I just leave them all mashed up. The sauce will thicken when it cools.
If you want to make a strawberry version, just replace the blueberries with strawberries.
Lemon cream cheese mixture
Juice of ½ lemon
200 grams cream cheese
3-4 tablespoons of icing sugar
Mix all the ingredients together until the icing sugar’s completely dissolved. Pop it into the fridge to set.
Building your double decker
Place a biscuit on a place and spread some of your blueberry/strawberry sauce on it. You can of course just use blueberry jam or strawberry jam if you can’t be bothered making a sauce. I prefer this home-made version because it’s less sweet.
Stick fresh blueberries/strawberries onto the jam – it helps keep the fruit in place.
Now you can either pipe your lemon cream cheese onto the fruit but it’s just as easy to take another biscuit, put about 2 dollops of cream cheese on the underside and then simply pop that onto your fruit.
Repeat again and dust icing sugar over the top biscuit before serving.