Good Eats and Sweet Treats from My Small Boston Kitchen

Cranberry Cheesecake Tart

Every year when the weather gets cold, and I have my first cranberry sighting in the supermarket, I buy a bag. I think it’s their limited availability that makes me utterly obsessed from that first day I see them stocked on store shelves, until I use up my very last bag at the end of the season. I really love cranberries, and use them in a lot of ways. I love cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving — whether it’s the canned jelly kind, fresh cranberry relish, or a cooked version studded with dried fruit or nuts — I add them to my morning oatmeal, I bake them into delicious desserts, I make syrups out of them and craft cranberry cocktails, and I even tried using them fresh in cookies recently!

When I saw this recipe early on in the season, I knew I had to make it. The idea of baking a cheesecake in a tart crust, and adding in sweetened cranberries just seemed so genius to me. I love sweet tart crust, I love cheesecake, and I love cranberry relish, but I’d have never thought of putting them all together. Thanksgiving seemed the perfect time to give this recipe a try, as an alternative to the more traditional pecan or pumpkin pie.

Cranberry Cheesecake Tart - Sweetly Serendipity

This tart was a big hit! The crust doubles as the crumble topping, which is a wonderful texture contrast to the creamy cheesecake and the fruity cranberry swirl. It’s flavorful and interesting, though not cloyingly sweet, which I found to be such a nice way to round out a hearty Thanksgiving meal.

Cranberry Cheesecake Tart - Sweetly Serendipity

Before making this recipe, I toyed with the idea of making this same tart with a gingersnap crust, because I thought the flavors would go nicely, and it’d be a bit more holiday-esque, but I’m glad I stuck with the original crust. The only thing I really changed was was the addition of fresh grated ginger in the cranberry mixture, and ground ginger in the crust. The flavor wasn’t super prominent, so I may add more were I to do it again.

Cranberry Cheesecake Tart - Sweetly Serendipity

All in all, this was a delicious dessert. Interesting and elemental and a bit nontraditional — which is always awesome in my book!

Cranberry Ginger Cheesecake Tart

Ingredients

    Cranberry filling:
  • 8 ounces cranberries
  • 6 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • Crust and crumb topping:
  • 1 1/4 cups white whole wheat flour (or all-purpose)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • Cheesecake:
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • To make the cranberry filling:
  • Combine cranberries, sugar, zest, juice and water in heavy saucepan. Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Then, decrease heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes or until cranberries are soft. Set aside to cool.
  • To make the crust:
  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add butter and mix with pastry blender or fork until mixture is crumbly and holds together when pinched. Set aside 1/2 cup of mixture.
  • Transfer remaining crust mixture to 9-inch pie or tart pan. Press crust firmly and evenly into pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Then, set aside to cool slightly.
  • To make cheesecake filling:
  • Place cream cheese and sugar in large mixing bowl. Using electric mixer on medium speed, beat until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla, and mix until combined and smooth. Pour cheesecake filling over slightly cooled crust. Spread evenly.
  • Drop cranberry mixture by teaspoonfuls over cheesecake filling, leaving about 1/2-inch border around edges.
  • Crumble remaining crust mixture over top of cranberries.
  • Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until edges are golden brown and cheesecake filling is set.
  • Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. Keep refrigerated.!Cranberry filling:
  • 8 ounces cranberries
  • 6 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • Crust and crumb topping:
  • 1 1/4 cups white whole wheat flour (or all-purpose)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • Cheesecake:
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

    For the cranberry filling:
  1. Combine cranberries, sugar, zest, juice and water in heavy saucepan. Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Then, decrease heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes or until cranberries are soft. Set aside to cool.
  2. For the crust:
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  4. Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add butter and mix with pastry blender or fork until mixture is crumbly and holds together when pinched. Set aside 1/2 cup of mixture.
  5. Transfer remaining crust mixture to 9-inch pie or tart pan. Press crust firmly and evenly into pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Then, set aside to cool slightly.
  6. For the cheesecake filling:
  7. Place cream cheese and sugar in large mixing bowl. Using electric mixer on medium speed, beat until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla, and mix until combined and smooth. Pour cheesecake filling over slightly cooled crust. Spread evenly.
  8. Drop cranberry mixture by teaspoonfuls over cheesecake filling, leaving about 1/2-inch border around edges.
  9. Crumble remaining crust mixture over top of cranberries.
  10. Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until edges are golden brown and cheesecake filling is set.
  11. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. Keep refrigerated.
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