This is my Mothers recipe for Ricotta cheesecake, I stuck to the recipe for the most part but I can’t help but add my own touches, I added some mascarpone and though a minor change I feel it made for a creamier texture. The minute I tasted it it took me back to the kitchen of my childhood. The cake is flavored with lemon, rum and vanilla and it has a short crust, The original recipe calls for a 8 inch pan with 3 inch sides, I used a springform pan and only had a 9 inch. I didn’t have quite enough dough to cover the top of the cake as instructed in the recipe so I doubled the recipe so there would be enough. As you can see from my cake I didn’t have quite enough of the dough so it didn’t look like the one my Mother made but the taste was exactly as I remember it.
3 cup flour
1/2 cup shortening or butter
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs beaten
1/2 cup sugar
6 tbs ice cold water, add 4 to start and see if you need more
Mix flour, salt and sugar until combined, cut in shortening or butter. Add egg and enough water so that dough forms a ball. Add water 4 tbs to start and more if needed. I made it in the food processor, add flour, sugar, salt and butter and pulse until it resembles crumbs.Beat egg with 4 tbs water and with motor running add through feeding tube, pulse until dough forms a ball. Add more water if you notice the dough is dry. Wrap dough in plastic and refrigerate for 30-60 minutes. NOTE: I had to double the recipe because I used a 9 inch pan you will have some leftover dough.
2 lbs ricotta (4 cups)
1 cup mascarpone
6 large eggs at room temperature
1 1/4 cup sugar
zest of one lemon
2 tbs lemon juice
2 tbs rum or marsala
3 tsp vanilla extract
Strain Ricotta in a sieve lined with cheese cloth until the water has drained. Beat ricotta mascarpone and sugar until fluffy and smooth, add the eggs one at a time beating until each egg is combined. Add the lemon juice,zest, rum, and vanilla and stir to combine.
Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees.
You will need a 9 inch springform pan, roll the dough as thin as possible and make sure it is at least double the size of your pan you will need to cover the top of the cheesecake almost all the way only leaving a quarter size hole in the center. Add filling and cover with the overhanging dough. Bake for 2 or 2 1/2 hours, believe me it takes that long my cake took a full 2 hours, it’s almost souffle like and you want the filling to be set completely before removing from the oven. The crust will be golden brown and as it bakes the filling rises almost causing a dome, it’s supposed to do that, it goes down when removed from the oven. Let cool completely in the pan. You do not have to refrigerate overnight like a regular cheesecake. Serve when cooled, and if not serving after cake has cooled cover and refrigerate.
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A wonderful serenity has taken possession of my entire soul, like these sweet mornings of spring which I enjoy with my whole heart. I am alone, and feel the charm of existence in this spot, which was created for the bliss of souls like mine. I am so happy, my dear friend, so absorbed in the exquisite sense of mere tranquil existence, that I neglect my talents. I should be incapable of drawing a single stroke at the present moment; and yet I feel that I never was a greater artist than now.