Friday, May 9, 2008
Goat Cheese Cake with Berries
One of my greatest pleasures is slowly mulling through my cookbooks and all those stacks of recipes rescued from magazines and newspapers of another time, finding inspiration again and again. Even greater is discovering a previously unknown and absolutely fabulous recipe in my midst. Today's incredible treasure is this Goat Cheese Cake from Emily Luchetti.
Have you ever wanted to eat a piece of cheesecake without feeling like you’ve just eaten a piece of cheesecake? This is your dessert. The recipe calls for goat cheese without the usual addition of cream cheese, so it's quite a different experience. Because goat cheese has a lower fat content and is a pure product without any gums or emulsifiers, it brings an incredible lightness to this beautiful dessert. That lightness is also emphasized by the addition of whipped egg whites gently folded into the batter. The slight tang is balanced by the sugar and rounded out by a bit of lemon juice and zest and the lovely perfume of vanilla. The cake tastes bright, fresh and absolutely delectable. The texture is bolstered by 3 tablespoons of flour that give it just enough body to allow a wonderful comparison to a New York Cheesecake, yet there is no fatty taste or heaviness left behind. I could go on and on. Are you with me?
The preparation is easy and quick and it’s ready in under an hour. Try this for your next dinner party or celebration and you will be amazed by the results. Thank you, Emily Luchetti!
- Bring the goat cheese or chévre to room temperature to ensure an easy and complete combining of ingredients. Eggs must also be at room temp.
- I served this with blackberries that I sprinkled with sugar, a bit of Crème de Cassis and an equal splash of lemon juice to taste. Really delicious.
- This cake will keep for a few days, but the texture changes dramatically. When eaten fresh, it has a very light and airy texture. After refrigeration, it becomes more dense.
- I used an 8" cake pan because I wanted more height for presentation. It baked in 25 minutes in my hot oven.
Goat Cheese Cake with Berries
adapted from Classic Stars Desserts Emily Luchetti
Serves 8 to 10
Butter and granulated sugar for the cake pan
11 ounces fresh goat cheese @ room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Grated zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
6 large eggs @ room temperature, separated
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 pint blackberries
sugar, to taste
lemon juice, to taste
Crème de Cassis, to taste (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9-inch round cake pan with butter and dust it thoroughly with granulated sugar. Tap out the excess.
Mix the goat cheese, sugar, vanilla, lemon zest, and lemon juice with the paddle attachment and beat until smooth. Add the egg yolks two at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in the flour and mix until incorporated.
Place the egg whites in a clean bowl and whip to soft peak. Gently fold the egg whites into the goat cheese mixture with a spatula. Be careful not to overmix or you will deflate the batter. Pour into the prepared pan.
Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Let cool to room temperature.
Toss the berries with sugar and lemon juice (and Crème de Cassis, if using), to taste.
Run a thin knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake and turn out onto a platter. Go ahead and swoon.