This lemon cheesecake version will surprise you. The granola base offers a ''healthier'' and crustier alternative to the classic graham crackers bottom. For the filling, I wanted to create something that matches the texture of the classic baked cheesecake but less compact. This recipe makes one 8 inch/20 cm by 2 inch/5 cm tall cake ring. Yield 10 to 12 servings. Make a day or 2 ahead. This no bake cheesecake can also be kept frozen for up to 2 months.
Warm up honey and butter; set aside. Mix all dry ingredients together and add the honey-butter mixture. Place the greased cake ring onto baking tray lined with parchment or silicone mat. Use 200g of the granola mixture inside the cake ring. Press down mixture using a large spoon or another device. Note that the thickness of the granola disk should not exceed 0.47 inch/1.2 cm. Save leftover granola for your next breakfast. Once granola mixture is compressed and perfectly distributed, carefully remove the cake ring, wipe it off and reserve for the cheesecake filling.
Preheat oven to 375ºF/190ºC. Set at 350ºF/180ºC if using a fan oven. Bake granola disk for about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.
Bring to a bowl water and sugar. Set aside.
*Bouddha's hand citrons looks like a lumpy lemon with fingers and smells like paradise. It may have been brought to China from India by Buddhist monks and cultivated in ancient China near the Yangtze Valley. Unlike most citrus, the rind of the Buddha’s hand isn’t bitter but rather sweet. Use regular lemon zests if Bouddha's hand isn't available. Rince Bouddha's hand under running water and cut into paper thin slices with a mandoline. (Blanching Buddha's hand zest is optional). Place zests in a saucepan, cover with syrup and bring to a boil and cook for 3 minutes. Let cool and refrigerate.
Zest Meyer lemons with a lemon zester. To blanch zests, place them in a small saucepan, cover with tap water and bring to a boil, rinse under water and drain – repeat once. Cover blanched lemon zests with simple syrup. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Let cool and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks. Peel off Meyer lemons and take flesh out to make supremes. Supremes are sections of a citrus fruit with all of the pith and peel cut away, remove seeds and drain; save the juice. Cover lemon supremes with honey and refrigerate. Drain honey-marinaded supremes prior to use. Save some of the juice for the soft lemon jelly.
In a saucepan, gather lemon juice and use some of the syrup (140g) from both, the Buddha's hand zest syrup and honey marinated lemon supremes. Meanwhile, mix sugar and agar-agar. Heat up liquid, add sugar-agar mixture. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes. Add a few drops of yellow food coloring if desired. Sieve and let cool.
Soak gelatin in cold water to soften and drain. Meanwhile, bring heavy cream to a boil (200g) and pour in white chocolate. Let stand for 2 minutes and mix using an immersion blender. Add the softened gelatin and mix. Then add remaining heavy cream; blend well and refrigerate ganache overnight.
Spreadable cream cheese should never be used for a regular cheese cake recipe. Before whipping cream cheese, soften it up in the microwave for a few seconds or use your kitchen blowtorch when mixer is running. Beat cream cheese along with salt, sugar and lemon juice. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a spatula or dough scraper every so often to make sure everything is thoroughly combined. Beat on medium high speed until smooth and lump free. Transfer beaten cream cheese to a large pastry bowl; keep it at room temp. Refrigerate mixing bowl for about 15 minutes or so. Beat ganache montée to soft peaks (do not over whip). Fold ganache montée into the cream cheese with a rubber spatula swiftly or do it with the mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
Acetate cake collars or waxed paper can be used to line the cake ring. Otherwise, cake ring should be remove with the help of an hair drier. Fill cake ring and use a small offset spatula to even out cheesecake filling. Freeze cake overnight.
Warm up lemon jelly to 86ºF/30ºC. Use about half of the lemon jelly for the cake (160g). Pour jelly onto the frozen cheesecake – carefully tilt cake in oder to spread the lemon jelly evenly. Place cake in the freezer for about 20 min to set before un-molding. Refreeze cake if necessary. Carefully, place cheesecake over the granola disk. Let cake to thaw in the refrigerator for about 7 hours and decorate harmoniously with lemon supremes and zests. Garnish with some mint leaves if desired. Enjoy!
Heart-shaped lemon cheesecake 💛