Berries are popping up all over in Georgia. I love trying different recipes with them, from drinks to muffins to desserts. This time I used raspberries, in a no-bake raspberry cheesecake. You can use whatever berries you wish. Granted it’s not the best cheesecake I’ve ever made. But there is no baking involved, it still turned out yummy and was devoured by my family.
First step, put on a raspberry pink dress to camouflage the raspberry puree that will later be splattered all over as you are making said cheesecake.. of course you could also wear an apron but it’s not as fun..
To make the crust, finely crush about eight graham crackers. I put them in a baggy and smashed the heck out of them with a rolling pin. You can also make the crust in a food processor but in my opinion, the less equipment involved the better. Add 4 Tbs melted unsalted butter, 2 Tbs brown sugar, and a pinch of salt. Press the crust into the bottom of a 9 inch spring form pan.
In a small pot, add one pound of raspberries. Frozen will do as well as fresh. Also add 1/4 cup sugar, 1 tsp vanilla extract, and 2 Tbs water. Cook over medium heat for about 5-10 minutes or until the fruit is soft. Use an immersion blender to puree the raspberry mixture. This is when a pink dress comes in handy. If you don’t have an immersion blender, a regular blender will do and it’s probably a lot less messy!
Sprinkle one packet of gelatin over 2 Tbs of cold water and let it sit for a minute to set up. Add the gelatin mixture to the raspberries and cook over low heat, whisking until the gelatin is completely dissolved. This does not take more than a few seconds. Divide the mixture into two bowls, one with 1/4 of it, and one with 3/4.
To make the cheesecake, beat one pound of softened cream cheese with 1/2 cup powdered sugar and one tsp of vanilla extract. Again, I didn’t use a mixer, just a wooden spoon. More exercise for your arms! Add the 1/4 cup of raspberry mixture and gently mix together.
In a separate bowl, whip 1/2 cup of heavy cream into soft peaks. It helps to chill the bowl in the refrigerator beforehand. Gently fold the whipped cream into the cheesecake batter. I love the beautiful pink clouds!
Pour the cheesecake batter over the graham cracker crust. Tap the pan gently to get rid of any air bubbles. Add the remaining 3/4 raspberry mixture to the top and gently smooth it out. Place the cheesecake into the refrigerator and allow it to set for at least two hours, preferably overnight. Before unlocking the spring-form pan, run a knife around the edge. You can top the cheesecake with fresh raspberries before serving if you wish, but I thought the raspberry gelatin was so beautiful on its own.
Enjoy while watching a berry colored summer sunset~