Home Made Summer combines the tang of lime and tropical richness of coconut to make a cheesecake that pleases the eyes as much as the palate.
Reprinted with permission by Yvette van Boven. Copyright © 2013. Published by Abrams. Available wherever books are sold. All rights reserved.
- Yield:serves 10
- Active time: 1 hour
- Total time:Overnight (for cooling)
- 1 package of amaretti cookies (about 7oz/200g)
- 5 tablespoons (75g) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for greasing
- Pinch of salt
- 14 ounces (400g) cream cheese, at room temperature
- 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (500g) quark
- 1 can of unsweetened coconut milk (13.5oz/400ml)
- 1 1/4 cups (250g) sugar
- Grated zest and juice of 2 limes
- Pinch of salt
- 6 large eggs
- 1 fresh coconut
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter a 9-inch (24-cm) springform pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper and butter the paper.
Make the crust: In a food processor, grind the cookies into fine crumbs. Add the melted butter and salt, and pulse until combined. Press the crumbly mixture into the bottom and 1/2 inch (1 cm) up the sides of the prepared pan. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, then let the crust cool on a rack.
Lower the oven temperature to 325°F (160°C).
Make the filling: In a large bowl using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until creamy. Beat in the quark and the coconut milk. Add the sugar bit by bit, then stir in half of the lime zest and all the juice and the salt. Add the eggs one at a time and beat to combine. Pour the filling into the prebaked crust.
Bake about 1 1/2 hours, until the center of the cake is just about firm.
Let cool for 20 minutes in the pan, then slide a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake, to prevent it from cracking as it cools.
Let the cheesecake cool completely.
Cover the cake with aluminum foil and refrigerate at least overnight.
Now you can garnish it.
Open the coconut: With hammer and nail, penetrate two of its three eyes (the dark spots on top of the coconut). Through one of the holes, pour the coconut water out into a bowl.
Place the coconut on a firm base (outside on your stoop, for example) wrapped tightly in a dishcloth and hit it with a hammer until it breaks.
With a sharp knife, cut the meat out of the coconut. You can peel off the brown skin with a vegetable peeler, but I think it’s prettier to leave it on. You can now use a peeler to slice strips and curls of coconut to garnish the cake, or you could grate it.
Remove the sides of the springform pan and place the cake on a platter. Garnish the top with the coconut curls and the rest of the lime zest.