This cake is an old family tradition on Mr A’s side. It shows its pretty face regularly, usually at birthday parties but also when the mood is right. I got the recipe from my mother in law and made it a bunch of times myself. It’s one of THE best cheesecake recipes. It’s tasty, slightly tanguy but most importantly it’s light: you can eat a slice (or two, or three) without feeling like it’s sinking down to the bottom of your stomach. You can also replace the mandarins with any other kind of canned fruit, although I must say the mandarins go beautifully with this cake.
For the base:
- 2 cups crumbed biscuits
- 90g melted butter
- 2 teaspoons hot water
For the filling:
- 1 teaspoon gelatine
- ¼ cup warm water
- 500g cream cheese
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
- Grated rind of 1 lemon
- Juice from the lemon and mandarins
- 2 tins of mandarin segments
- 2 egg whites
Mix the crumbed biscuits with the melted butter and water. Place at the bottom of a springform pan and press firmly. Place in the fridge to cool.
Open 1 tin of mandarins, drain. Keep the syrup in a bowl as you’ll need it later on.
Dissolve the gelatine in the warm water.
In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add the gelatine and beat well. Add sugar, mix. Add the vanilla essence and lemon rind, mix.
Make ½ cup of liquid from the lemon juice and some of the mandarin syrup. Add liquid to the mixture.
Beat 2 eggs whites until just stiff. Fold them into the mixture, then add the drained mandarin segments.
Pour the mixture into the crust. Drain the second tin of mandarins and place the segments on top of the cheesecake. Chill in the fridge for at least 3-4 hours or overnight.