I love the light texture of a good ricotta cheesecake but by adding mascarpone to the mixture, the cheesecake becomes creamier while remaining very light. I made this light cheesecake yesterday for our Easter dessert and really was pleased how it turned out. It was moist, light, with just a hint of lemon flavor. Along with lemon zest, I used Fiori di Sicilia, which I buy at King Arthur flour. I love the combination of citrus and vanilla in this extract, and use it often in a lot of my baked goods. If you do not have Fiori di Sicilia, you can use half a teaspoon of vanilla extract, and half a teaspoon of lemon extract. This is a cheesecake that can be made crustless as in the version I made yesterday, or you can add your favorite graham or pastry crust. If your ricotta cheese is very wet, drain it in a sieve over a bowl for an hour or so which will ensure a creamier cheesecake. This cheesecake is delicious simply dusted with powdered sugar, drizzled with a fruit puree, or topped with fresh berries as shown in my photos.
Deborah Mele 2011
- 2 Pounds Ricotta Cheese
- 1 Pound Mascarpone Cheese
- 1 1/2 Cups Granulated Sugar
- 6 Large Eggs
- 2 Large Egg Yolks
- Zest From 1 Large Lemon
- 1 Teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia (See Note Above)
- Powdered Sugar
- 1 Pint of Fresh Strawberries, Sliced & Tossed With 1/2 Teaspoon Lemon Zest And 2 Teaspoons Sugar
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
- Generously butter a 9 inch spring-form pan, then cover bottom and sides with aluminum foil.
- Place spring-form pan into a larger casserole dish and pour in enough water to come up the sides of the spring-form pan by 1 inch.
- Using a mixer, beat together the ricotta, mascarpone and sugar until light and fluffy, then add the eggs and egg yolks one at a time beating between each.
- Add the lemon zest and Fiori di Sicilia (or extracts) and mix until blended.
- Pour the batter into your prepared spring-form pan and bake for 1 1/2 hours.
- Turn the oven off, and let the cheesecake sit in the oven for another 30 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the oven and let cool to room temperature.
- Use a sharp knife to help loosen the sides of the cheesecake from the pan and place on a plate.
- Refrigerate the cheesecake for several hours before serving. Just before serving sprinkle with powdered sugar.
- Serve small slices topped with sliced macerated berries.