Summer is here and that means we can pull out those recipes featuring luscious cold desserts and tropical fruits. If there are two things that we go nuts for in our home, it's cheesecake and mangoes. Combine the two and we're in 7th heaven! Especially Mr. Hubby
No wait! If I knew a way to infuse cheesecake with mango ice-cream, he’d probably be even more ecstatic. So until I figure out how to do that, I’m restricting my challenges to the ones I can conquer.
Like how to take the heaviness out of the cheesecake and make it lusciously super creamy.
Now there’s an achievable goal. I’m not being snarky.
I threw this recipe together a couple of years ago when I had organized a surprise birthday party for Mr. Hubby and though darling friends arranged to get a chocolate cake to appease chocoholics, the cheesecake had Mr. Hubby’s name written all over it.
Cream cheese, mascarpone, mango puree, freshly ground cardamom are the main ingredients and are processed until smooth in a food processor. Instead of the usual graham crust base, I'm sticking to my favorite which is a ginger & molasses snaps crust, which I think you’ll agree is so much better with Mango.
Also, no worries about the cheesecake top being cracked, unsightly or any of that; some sour cream with mango puree swirled smeared on the top of the cheesecake for the last 10 minutes was a wondrous way to finish the top.
Take note folks! I personally don’t like it when the crust goes up all the way up the sides of the cheesecake because I think the proportion of crust vis-à-vis my filling is lopsided. If you want yours to go all the way up the sides of the pan, you’ll want to double up on the recipe for the crust.
Just before serving, some fresh chopped mangoes bejeweled with some black berries are a gorgeous way to serve this dessert.
Happy Summer, world!
Mango, Mascarpone & Cardamom Cheesecake
Note: Begin this recipe the day before serving. Overnight in refrigerator required.
Makes a 10" cheescake
1 box (approx. 35) ginger snap biscuits
5 tbsp. unsalted butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/8 tsp salt
4 qty 8.oz packages cream cheese, softened
8 oz. Mascarpone
1-3/4 cup Mango Puree, canned (purchase from Indian-Pakistani grocery store)
5 large eggs
1-1/2 tsp fresh & finely ground cardamom seeds
1-1/4 cup sugar
Sour cream topping:
16 oz. sour cream
2 tbsp. sugar
1/3 cup Mango Puree (for decorating)
2 large ripe, sweet Mangoes
1 cup blackberries
1/2 cups blueberries + 1/2 cup raspberries (for 4th of July celebrations)
1 tsp. powdered/confectioner's sugar
Also required, is a 10-inch spring foam pan
Pre-heat the oven at 350 deg. F.
For the crust, add the ginger snaps to a food processor. Process until broken down but there will still be some large chunks remaining. Add the sugar and process until as powdery as possible. Add the butter and process for a few minutes until mixture is tacky.
Prep the pan: Using a large and continuous sheet & wrap a seamless piece of Al foil, crimp and press around the bottom & side edges of the spring foam pan to protect the seam where the pan edges meets the base. Place on a baking pan with a lip high enough to hold about 1/2" water.
Empty all the crust contents for the crust in the pan. With clean hands press down. Use a straight edge ¼ measuring cup and press to allow the crust mixture to also go up the sides (refer to my note in the introduction regarding this)
Smooth the crust so it is compacted and as level as possible.
Refrigerate the crust for 30 minutes allowing the melted butter to harden. Place the spring foam pan on the jelly roll pan. Bake the refrigerated crust for about 10 minutes until a shade golden brown. Remove from the oven.
Meanwhile, prepare the filling.
Wash the bowl of the food processor and fit with the metal blade. Add the cream cheese (at room temperature) and process until smooth and creamy. Add the eggs and process. Add the mascarpone, sugar, mango puree and ground cardamom & beat until the mixture is light and fluffy. Stop as soon as lumps are gone and do not over beat.
Empty the filling into the crust base. Place in the pre-heated oven. Place in the pre-heated oven and pour water into the baking tray, 1/2" high.
Bake for about 30 minutes until the cake is nearly set but is still slightly wobbly when the pan is shaken. Please note no significant browning may occur on the surface.
While the cheesecake is baking, place the sour cream and the sugar into a bowl. Stir with a spatula to combine.
Remove from the oven and pour the sour cream mixture on the baked cheesecake. Spread the sour cream topping evenly on the surface of the cheesecake.
Drop teaspoonfuls of the mango puree all over the surface. Using a dinner knife, make swirl patterns in the sour cream.
Bake for another 10 minutes. The sour cream topping bakes glossy. Remove from the oven and allow to cool about 15-20 minutes.
The cheesecake will mostly fall away from the sides as it cools. Run a knife gently around the edge of the pan to separate the cake from the pan sides to detach any sticky spots. Allow to cool on the rack for about 1 hour & refrigerate with a loose cover on top. Keep the spring foam pan sides still attached as you chill, overnight.
Next day, 1-1/2 hour before serving, prepare the fruit:
Peel ripe mangoes. Dice into ½” pieces. Discard the large seed. Add 1 tsp powdered sugar. Gently mix to combine and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour until ready to use.
Bring cheesecake to room temperature 1-1/2 hours before serving.
Detach the sides of the cheesecake from the pan once the cheesecake is taken out of the refrigerator. Place on the final serving platter. Leave the base in place as-is.
Just before serving, spoon the diced mango along the edge of the cheesecake in a full circle. Dot with black berries and raspberries if desired. Be careful not to drop the mango all over the surface or it will stain the white sour cream.
Cut into wedges. Enjoy!