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Lemon Cheesecake (unbaked)

Feb 1, 2012 by     No Comments    Posted under: A to Z of recipes, Desserts, Quick and easy recipes


This is one of the easiest unbaked desserts – the combination of the whipped cream and cream cheese makes it firm enough for the cake to hold its shape.

Serves 12 Preparation time 30 mins Cost per portion £0.32

Method for base of cheesecake:
1. Melt the butter over a low heat.
2. Crush the biscuits until they resemble fine crumbs, then add them to the melted butter and stir until the butter is evenly distributed.
3. Put the biscuit and butter mixture into a 20 cm (8 inch) springform cake tin and press it down to form a firm and even base, then put it in the fridge to cool while making the filling.

Ingredients for base of cheesecake:
250g digestive biscuits (1 small packet)
100g butter

Method for cheesecake filling:
1. Put the cream cheese, lemon juice, zest and icing sugar in a large bowl and whisk it all together until it is smooth.
2. Whip the cream in a separate bowl until it is thick and floppy, then add the cream cheese mixture to it and continue whisking until it is all mixed through. (Be careful to not over whip either the cream or the combined mixture, or you will end up with a hard, butter like filling, rather than a soft and smooth filling which can still hold its shape). You could taste the filling at this stage and add more icing sugar or lemon juice depending on how sweet or tangy you like it.
3. Put the filling onto the biscuit base and flatten the surface with a knife to make it look smooth and even.
4. Chill for at least 6 hours in a fridge.
5. Push the cheesecake carefully out of the spring form tin and onto a plate prior to serving.
6. Decorate with fruit or serve as it is.

Ingredients for cheesecake filling:
300mls fresh double cream
250g cream cheese
Juice of 2 lemons (80mls)
Optional – Zest of 2 lemons or oranges                                      180g icing sugar

Additional information
It’s easiest to crush the biscuits in a polythene bag (using a rolling pin).

The combination of the whipped cream and cream cheese makes this cheesecake firm enough to hold its shape without needing to use gelatin.

I originally got this recipe from a cousin’s wife about 25 years ago. When I first jotted down the recipe on a bit of paper I didn’t have the exact amounts of all the ingredients, so for many years I would taste the filling as I was making the cheesecake, and would adjust the amount of sugar and lemon juice accordingly.  Many years and many inches on my waistline later, I decided to finally work out exactly how much sugar is needed in this cheesecake; the answer was fairly depressing but it hasn’t put me off making this cheesecake – I just make it less frequently and have a smaller slice than I use to. At least now that I know how much sugar to put I don’t need to eat half the cheesecake as I’m making it!

Health benefits of lemon juice
Lemon juice is a good source of vitamin C and also contains a compound called limonene which allegedly is good at preventing cancer.

Health benefits of cheesecake
This is a tricky one – I think I’ll have to call upon the ‘French Paradox’ to dig up some health benefits here, i.e. despite a diet high in saturated fats, the French have a relatively low incidence of heart disease, but one must also remember that the French also have a relatively low obesity rate – 10% compared to 30% in the US, so probably the best advice is to always eat a small portion. Another statistic worth knowing is that France has the highest rate of centenarians in the world– 1 in 3076 of the population, (Japan which is often quoted in these sorts of statistics has 1 in 3522 centenarians, although Japan has the third highest life expectancy in the world, probably due to their obesity rate being only 3% – Macau and Andorra are first and second in the life expectancy rankings).  So in a nutshell, it’s probably ok to eat cheese, cream and butter, so long as you keep your weight down and have a generally healthy lifestyle like the French do!

Nutrition Information

Nutrition per 100g per portion RDA women RDA men RDA child
Energy 449 kcal 434 kcal 22% 17% 24%
Protein* 2.5 g 2.5 g 5% 4% 10%
Carbohydrate* 32 g 31 g 13% 10% 14%
Total Sugars* 20 g 19 g 21% 16% 22%
Fat* 36 g 34 g 49% 36% 49%
Polyunsaturates* 1.2 g 1.2 g
Mono Unsaturates* 8.3 g 8.0 g
Saturated Fat* 22 g 21 g 104% 69% 104%
Fibre 0.5 g 0.5 g 2% 2% 3%
Salt 0.5 g 0.5 g 8% 8% 12%

* Percentage Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet for an average adult.
Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Allergens: Milk, Wheat

Cost per recipe:£ 3.86
Cost per portion:£0.32

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