or much of the country, the first weeks of fall mean the beginning of crisp nights and leaves turning brilliant colors. In San Diego, however, we are still having spells of hot weather. So, that makes it a good time to try a recipe from Julianne Bayer’s new cookbook, “No-Bake Treats.”
The Los Angeles author of the Beyond Frosting blog, http://beyondfrosting.com, Bayer says she has a love-hate relationship with cheesecake: She loves eating cheesecake but hates baking them. So, she has developed a number of no-bake cheesecakes. Other no-bake recipes in the book include icebox cakes, chocolate tarts, truffles and parfaits.
Blueberry Crumble Cheesecake
Yields 8 to 10 slices
For the crust
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
¼ cup light brown sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
For the cheesecake
1 cup heavy whipping cream
½ cup powdered sugar
4 ounces white chocolate
16 ounces cream cheese, softened
½ cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 ounces blueberries, washed and dried
1 tablespoon lemon juice
For the topping
2/3 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup quick oats
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
3 ounces blueberries, washed and dried (optional)
Make the crust: Prepare a 9-by-3-inch springform pan by lightly greasing the edges of the pan with cooking spray and then wiping gently with a paper towel. Before measuring, grind the graham crackers into fine crumbs using a food processor or blender. In a medium-size bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs and the brown sugar. Microwave the butter for 45 to 60 seconds until the butter is melted. Stir the melted butter into the crumbs until there are no dry crumbs left. Pour the crumbs into your springform pan and press firmly into the bottom and up the sides to create a thick crust.
To make the cheesecake: Prepare the whipped cream first by placing the mixing bowl and whisk attachment in the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes to chill. Pour the heavy whipping cream into the chilled bowl and use an electric mixer to beat the heavy cream on medium-high speed until the cream gets bubbly. Slowly add the powdered sugar and continue beating on high speed until stiff peaks form. Set aside.
Melt the white chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl in 30-second increments, stirring each time until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Microwaving at 50 percent power is recommended; it helps prevent the white chocolate from seizing. Allow the chocolate to cool.
Beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed for 2 to 3 minutes until it’s light and fluffy. Add ½ cup of sugar and the flour, and beat just until incorporated. Next, pour the melted white chocolate into the cream cheese mixture and blend until well incorporated.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Combine the blueberries, lemon juice and the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar in a food processor. Blend together until it reaches a liquid consistency. Next, pour the blueberry juice into the cream cheese mixture and beat on low speed until it is blended into the filling, scraping down the bowl as needed. Slowly add the prepared whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture, folding over and over with a spatula until the whipped cream is well combined. Pour the filling into the prepared crust and use a spatula to spread it evenly.
To make the topping: Combine all of the dry topping ingredients in a medium-size bowl. Cut the butter into small cubes and add it to the dry ingredients. Use a pastry cutter or 2 forks to press the cold butter into the dry ingredients repeatedly until there are no loose and dry ingredients. Don’t be afraid to use your (clean) hands! The mixture will be clumpy like dough. Break the dough apart and sprinkle it over the top of the cheesecake filling, and then gently press the crumbs down so they hold together.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. If needed, gently run a warm knife around the top edge of the cheesecake to separate it from the sides of the pan. Garnish with fresh blueberries, if desired. To get nice, crisp cuts, Bayer freezes the cake for 30 minutes before serving. To serve, cut into this cake with a sharp knife, and clean the knife after each cut.