Cherry Cheesecake Tart
This is a very tasty and creamy cheesecake with a chocolate wafer press in crust and swirls of cherry purée throughout it. A must make dessert full of Black Forest cake flavours. There’s always room for dessert especially when it’s cheesecake. My family can’t seem to get enough so it seems I’m charged with the ‘ultra difficult duty’ of making one with every seasonal fruit that comes along - oh the hardship! My family also has a love for Black Forest cake so every cherry season I feel this overwhelming desire to do a take on it. I have a more classic and simplified take on a Black Forest cake on the blog already - and its a family favourite. Last summer I made a No bake Black Forest ice box cake and so this year I thought I would switch it up again and make a cheesecake. A simple one in tart form that requires very little effort and time to make compared to a classic cheese cake.
The recipe comes from Fine Cooking and is a favorite of mine. It’s such a good one. It can easily be adapted to suit any berry and any stone fruit for that matter. The purée is simple to make and adds just enough flavour of the fruit you are showcasing - cherries in this case. The only thin I changed was I used greek yoghurt for the sour cream in the recipe as I didn’t have any sour cream on hand and yoghurt makes a good swap for it. I also added a touch of lemon juice to the filling as I think every cheesecake does well with a touch of lemon juice for texture and flavour.
When it comes to the purée if you want to keep it alcohol free you can leave out the Kirsch or the cherry Brandy that I used in this recipe. Adding the cherry preserves adds some body to the cherry purée and some sweetness but an alternative if you don’t have cherry preserves or cherry jam is to add a little cornstarch to the purée to add that same sort of body to it, plus a sweetener if you want to sweeten up the cherry purée a bit. Just start by using 1 tsp of the cornstarch at first and add a pinch more at a time only if needed and as much sweetener as you prefer.
The base is made with crushed chocolate wafer cookies. It’s a press in crust that gets baked for a few minutes and then allowed to cool before filling and baking again with the filling. On the very off chance that you cannot get your hands on chocolate wafer cookies you can use graham cracker cookies or even Oreo cookies for your base. If you use those I would definitely omit the sugar as they are already sweet. If you are truly desperate for those wafer cookies I have you covered - you can make your own at home using this simple recipe.
The cherry swirls are simple and you can get as fancy as you like with them. YOUTUBE has some pretty creatives ideas for swirling toppings into your cheesecake. The cherry purée is not a smooth liquid so it won’t look like a chocolate syrup swirl but it will still look nice and will taste delicious. I think you are going to especially love that it doesn’t need to bake for too long and it also doesn’t require a water bath either it also takes much less time to cool and set in the fridge which means less time for you to get some in your belly. Hope you enjoy this years Olive and Mango Black Forest cake rendition via this cheesecake! We sure did!
- 6 oz. chocolate wafers, finely crushed (1½ cups)
- ⅓ cup plus 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
- 2½ oz. (5 Tbs.) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 cup pitted fresh or frozen sweet cherries, puréed (in food processor or blender)
- 3 Tbs. cherry preserves/jam
- 1 Tbs. kirsch or Cherry Brandy
- 12 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 4 oz. sour cream (⅓ plus 1 Tbs.), at room temperature or Greek yoghurt
- 1 Tbs. all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. Pure vanilla extract
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring the cherry purée to a simmer. Whisk in the cherry preserves and continue to simmer until the mixture thickens slightly, 3-5 minutes. Stir in the kirsch or cherry Brandy and continue to cook for 30 seconds more.Remove from the heat and cool.
- Position a rack in the centre of the oven, and pre heat oven to 350°F.
- In a small bowl, combine crushed cookies with 2 Tbs. of the sugar. Stir in the melted butter and toss until evenly moistened. Empty crumbs onto a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Press the crust firmly into the bottom and up the sides of the pan to form the crust. Bake on a rimmed baking sheet until set, 10 minutes then set it aside to cool while you make the filing. REDUCE the oven temperature to 325°F.
- With a mixer beat the cream cheese and remaining ⅓ cup sugar on medium-low speed until the mixture is smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the sour cream, flour, vanilla extract, lemon juice and salt, and beat until just combined. Add the eggs one at a time beating just until combined after adding each. Do not over beat.
- Pour the batter into the crust and distribute evenly. Dot the batter with the cherry purée and gently drag a butter knife or a skewer through the filling to create decorative swirls.
- Bake until the tart is just set but still slightly moist in the centre, 18-24 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours Serve cold.
The tart can be made up to 1 day ahead. Cheesecakes will last up to 4 days in refrigerator or can be frozen for up to one month.