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Ricotta Cheesecake

by Jamie on July 2, 2011

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Have you guys figured out that I’m a last minute kinda girl? Case in point: this recipe for Ricotta Cheesecake that’s all prettied up for the 4th of July. Although I am sure most of you have your menu planned for this weekend, I thought I might sneak in a few last minute recipes for those of you that are like me and tend wait until the last possible second to decide these sorts of things.

I really had no plan to create anything special for the 4th of July, I just sort became inspired when I started decorating this Ricotta Cheesecake earlier in the week. As I was about to mound the glazed berries in a simple pile, instead I suddenly envisioned a ripe red star with strawberries.

I printed a star shape that I found on the internet, cut it out and used it as a guide. Easy? Yes. Tedious? Kind of. Although it took some time, I think it’s definitely worth the patriotic impact.

Now let’s move on to the cheescake.

I’ve never had a Ricotta Cheesecake, so if I am being honest, I was a little apprehensive about how this recipe would unfold, especially since I tend to be a little oversensitive to food textures. Certain things like jell-o, raw oysters, and ripe bananas don’t make it past my lips. And that’s just to name a few.

This Ricotta Cheesecake is prepared pretty much like any standard cheesecake and has all the same components. Graham cracker crust? Check. Creamy filling? Check. But where things get a little different is the texture and flavor.

Comparing this to a traditional cheesecake probably isn’t the best route to take because well, it’s not traditional cheesecake. But for those of you that are curious, the texture is a bit fluffier and the taste is a bit more subtle. Overall, I liked the recipe for a change of pace, but you guys know I love cheesecake. This ricotta based recipe may never top my absolute favorite recipe for homemade cheesecake, but I’m glad that I gave it a whirl.

I hope you have a great holiday weekend full of amazing family, friends, fireworks and of course, food!

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Ricotta Cheesecake

July 2nd, 2011

Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients:

For the Crust

1 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted

For the Filling

4 cups (30 oz.) Sargento® Part Skim Ricotta Cheese
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon zest (about one medium lemon)
1/2 cup half-and-half
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
1/2 cup blueberry jam, heated slightly and stirred

For the Topping

1-1/2 cups fresh strawberry slices or fresh whole raspberries
2 cups fresh blueberries
1/4 cup apricot jelly, heated slightly

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with foil and clamp on the ring.

2. Combine crust ingredients; mix well. Press evenly into the bottom and up the sides of the prepared pan. Bake crust for 7 minutes in preheated oven. Remove and cool on a wire rack.

3. While crust is cooling, prepare the filling. In the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, blend together the cheese, sugar, lemon zest, half-and-half, flour, vanilla and salt. Add eggs, one at a time; blend until smooth.

4. Pour half of batter into prepared crust. Spoon half of blueberry spread randomly over batter; top with remaining batter, smooth with spatula. Spoon remaining blueberry spread randomly over batter; swirl with knife for marbled effect.

5. Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour or until center is just set. Turn off oven; cool in oven with door propped open 30 minutes. Remove to cooling rack. Cool completely; chill 6 to 24 hours.

6. Arrange strawberries and blueberries on cooled cheesecake. Brush jelly over fruit; chill at least 30 minutes to set glaze.

Notes:

- Do not top the cheesecake with the fresh fruit until the day you are serving. The fruit will not have the same fresh appeal and will add a bit of moisture to the top of the cake.
- Feel free to substitute the blueberry jam with strawberry or raspberry.
- The apricot jam is not necessary for the fruit topping, it simply adds a little sheen to the fruit.
- Recipe adapted from Sargento Cheese Red, White and Blueberry Cheesecake.


{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

Maris (In Good taste) July 2, 2011 at 8:28 pm

Looks delicious and that star is fantastic! Very artistic!

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Ann July 2, 2011 at 9:40 pm

WOW! That is absolutely beautiful! How creative to put the strawberry star on it….Incredible!

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Kathleen G July 2, 2011 at 11:10 pm

I’m a last minute kinda person too! I think I’ll give this a try!

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Jessica July 3, 2011 at 2:26 am

Oh my gosh, you make it look so yummy and festive! I would never thought of using ricotta cheese in a cheesecake (I have only ever used ricotta cheese in lasagna), but I am tempted to give it a try. Cheesecake is top 3 on my favorite dessert list! Thank you for sharing the recipe : )

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Lynne @ 365 Days of Baking July 3, 2011 at 5:28 am

This looks beautiful and delicious! LOVE the strawberry star!!

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Paula B. July 3, 2011 at 6:03 am

Absolutely artfully decorated! And who are those who don’t make last minute decisions on their menus – people I don’t need to know. Ricotta as an ingredient for baking,yes: think ricotta cookies and Easter pie. My mom and I used to make a dessert with a cake mix as a start, you then added a ricotta mixture and when it was all done baking you had two distinct layers, one cheesecake, the other plain cake. This could be done with white or yellow cake and flavored with vanilla or lemon,etc. and was cut in very small squares (it was so dense), then placed in cupcake liners to serve. So yummy and made a ton. Happy Fourth!

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Michele July 3, 2011 at 6:29 am

That’s beautiful!

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Marya July 3, 2011 at 8:10 am

I just found your site about a week ago and love every part of it. THANK YOU so much for doing the cheesecake. THIS will be the hit of my party! I can’t wait!

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Savorique July 3, 2011 at 1:21 pm

Very creative decoration for a very yummy cake. The second pic shows well how dense it is, like a thick mousse. I would have put more lemon somehow, but it’s very personal. Thanks for sharing this.

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Paula July 3, 2011 at 2:37 pm

What a beautifully decorated cheesecake! Hope you enjoy a wonderful 4th of July celebration.

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Karla July 3, 2011 at 2:47 pm

Props to you for a: being creative and b: trying a flavor combination that you weren’t entirely sure about. I love making my own ricotta cheese, and am constantly on the lookout for sweet things to make with it (not that I don’t enjoy the change to indulge on ricotta-based savory dishes {read: pasta!}). Your cheesecake looks beautiful!!

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Becca July 3, 2011 at 3:47 pm

Your beautiful cheesecake SCREAMS Americana! I love it <3

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Casey@Good. Food. Stories. July 3, 2011 at 4:09 pm

This has nothing to do with cheesecake, but you’re not a fan of bananas either? Hmmm…. we may have to form a support group.

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Jamie July 3, 2011 at 7:34 pm

Casey–
I like bananas when they are firm, never-ever-ever-ever…will I eat a ripe banana. Ick.
–Jamie

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Liz July 3, 2011 at 4:31 pm

I think I have you beat in the last-minute dept. I was going to make a sheet cake for a get together this afternoon but this looked more interesting. Neglected to read down to where it said “chill 6 to 24 hours” and I’m doing it on the fly. Heading out (3 hours late) to a potluck with this in hand, star and all (the apricot jam is great for anchoring the fruit to the cake, by the way). I’m sure it will be great- sure looks pretty.

Thanks for posting!

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Amber | Bluebonnets & Brownies July 3, 2011 at 5:12 pm

So very beautiful, Jamie. I think I’d probably like ricotta cheesecake a lot.

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Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen July 3, 2011 at 6:45 pm

I actually prefer the fluffier texture of a ricotta cheesecake to the heavy sometimes too rich traditional cream cheese cheesecake. Beautifully decorated!

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Jennifer July 3, 2011 at 9:59 pm

It may be last minute, but its just beautiful. I love ricotta cheesecake but never have made it with a blueberry filling and now I will! Thanks!

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Lauren at Keep It Sweet July 4, 2011 at 8:43 am

I’ve also never had ricotta cheesecake but it sounds good for a change. I love how you decorated the cake!

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bridget {bake at 350} July 4, 2011 at 9:18 am

I love, love, love that strawberry star!!! How CUTE!

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Tracy July 4, 2011 at 2:37 pm

I’ve never tried ricotta cheesecake either, but this recipe is calling my name. So gorgeous with the berries on top too!!

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roz July 4, 2011 at 4:48 pm

This is probably the best patriotic dessert that I’ve seen posted in all of the foodie blogs! Seriously! I could bite right in if I were there! Luscious and lovely! I would so love it if you could add this to my weekly foodie blog hop that ends tonight (monday). We select 5 foodie bloggers every week to be featured! Hope you can join us!

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Chocolate Shavings July 4, 2011 at 9:41 pm

Love that strawberry star!

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Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction July 5, 2011 at 8:50 am

This cheesecake looks absolutely stunning!!

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Lenore July 7, 2011 at 3:45 pm

Your decoration on top is gorgeous! I love the strawberry star idea. I have never tried ricotta in a cheesecake, but I have in ice cream, and I can see how it would cause the texture to be different. Still, it looks so beautiful, I’ll have to try it for sure.

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monica April 19, 2012 at 4:50 am

I want to make it this afternoon, §I have got goat ricotta for this purpose thanks! It’s gorgeous

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Lauren March 24, 2013 at 9:06 am

Hello! Absolutely love your blog. I must note that cake made from ricotta is very traditional in Italy, especially in the south (think cannoli). In fact, ricotta is used just as commonly in sweet recipes as it is in savory dishes, if not more. If I go to an Italian restaurant here and find it on the dessert menu, I always order it. I love the flavor – not too sweet, rich and velvety. I look forward to trying your recipe!

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Molly April 20, 2013 at 11:00 pm

I used your recipe as a guideline, but I made a few successful changes: substituted one cup of the ricotta with one cup of greek yogurt; half of the butter with coconut oil; half of the sugar for Truvia; half of the regular flour with coconut flour; and then I completely swapped the half and half with almond milk. I’ve made it this way twice now, once with a blueberry and once with strawberry fillings, and the texture is just divine and the flavor is spot on (I’ve found that my mods take a bit longer to bake). Thank you so much for posting this and inspiring me to experiment in my kitchen.

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Kathryn May 3, 2013 at 6:41 pm

I was just wondering if you knew of any substitution for the flour. I’m gluten intolerant, so I would probably be (read: will be) making this over the summer with GF graham crackers and such. It looks like a FANTASTIC recipe :) Thanks for sharing it!!

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Pam April 9, 2014 at 5:40 pm

Ricotta Cheesecake is an Italian cake. It is traditionally made at Easter time, but not with all the fruit in it or on top of it. It is a very light cheesecake and if made right will taste wonderful.

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