Ricotta Cheesecake with Blackberry Balsamic Rosemary Sauce
Plan ahead: You'll need to chill the baked cheesecakes overnight. This recipe was photographed in a 3x2-inch pan; any of the sizes listed below will work, but the cheesecake will look slightly different.
- 2 (15-ounce) containers whole milk ricotta cheese, drained
- 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese
- 2 eggs
- 6 tablespoons fine dry bread crumbs
- 3 tablespoons butter, softened
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons finely shredded orange peel
- 1 tablespoon orange juice
- 2 teaspoons orange extract (or orange liqueur)
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- Blackberry Balsamic Rosemary Sauce (recipe follows)
- 1 pint fresh blackberries and fresh rosemary sprigs for garnish
Let ricotta, cream cheese, and eggs stand at room temperature 30 minutes. In food processor, process bread crumbs until very fine. Set baking rack in lower third of oven; preheat oven to 325°F. Wrap outside of six 4-1/2x1-1/2 inch or 4x2 inch or 3x2 inch individual springform pans with heavy duty aluminum foil to create watertight seal. Grease bottoms and insides of pans with butter. In small bowl combine 3 tablespoons processed breadcrumbs and 3 tablespoons sugar. Place mixture in pans; coat as if dusting pans with flour. Tap out any excess.
To remaining crumbs in processor add ricotta, cream cheese, and 3/4 cup sugar; process just until smooth, scraping down sides as necessary. Add eggs, one at a time, processing just until combined. Scrape down sides; add peel, juice, extract, and salt. Cover; process just until combined. Divide batter evenly among prepared pans.
Place prepared cheesecake pans in roasting pan. Place roasting pan on oven rack. Pour enough boiling water into pan to reach halfway up sides of individual cheesecake pans, being careful not to get water into batter or above foil lining. Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until lightly browned and just set. Remove pans from water bath to cooling rack; let cool 30 minutes. Chill, uncovered, 2 hours. Cover; chill overnight.
To assemble, wrap pans with warm towel several seconds to release cheesecake from sides of pan. Carefully remove cheesecake from pan. Using thin metal spatula, remove cheesecake from the pan bottom; transfer to plate. Top with Blackberry Balsamic Rosemary Sauce. Garnish with fresh blackberries and rosemary sprigs. Makes 6 individual cheesecakes.
Blackberry Balsamic Rosemary Sauce:
In medium saucepan combine 1 (16- to 18-ounce) jar seedless blackberry preserves or jam, 2 tablespoons water, and 1 tablespoon good quality balsamic vinegar. Bring to simmer over medium heat; add 1 sprig fresh rosemary. Simmer, uncovered, 3 minutes (simmer longer for thick glaze-sauce). Remove from heat. Remove rosemary; let sauce cool 1 hour. Cover; chill until ready to use or up to 3 days. Stir before using. Makes 1-3/4 cups sauce.