A non-baked aside… Marmalade

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I made marmalade for the first time last year, using just 5 bitter oranges making 5 jars. So I thought I’ll do it again this year buuuuuuut I ended up with 11 bitter oranges, more than one and a half kilos and it was a lot of work. I was so proud of my fine cut peel last year but I couldn’t face chopping up the peel of 11 oranges so I ended up using Monsieur Moulinex. The result wasn’t as good as I expected so next year I’ll go back to five oranges and chopping by hand. I mean what am I going to do with 14 jars of marmalade?!? It’s mental. Since this is the sort of stuff I do to relax (?!) in the evening once the kids are in bed, I didn’t get much relaxation out of this one. Last night I was finished after cleaning up gone 11pm… Not my idea of spending a Friday night but there you go.
I’ve already thought of ways to use up some of that marmalade: sponge sandwiches or that Buccaneer Shortbread I mentioned last time could work really well with a layer of marmalade between the shortbread and the caramel. We’ll see.

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Apple Cheesecake

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I love cheesecake! And over the years I have collected quite a number of recipes with the majority still untried since I very often just fall back to the tried and tested ones. I’m a creature of habit, don’t you know. 🙂

I first made this particular cheesecake in about 2003. We were invited for dinner at a dear friend’s. We’d only just met and it was the beginning of a wonderful friendship. She cooked us a wonderful curry (a recipe from her daughter-in-law whose family is from Pakistan) with a lovely aromatic rice. So this cheesecake was a fab dessert for this occasion. We had it in her little back garden, near a massive rosemary plant. By that time, I had the recipe for a number of years – it was a cutout from an ASDA magazine from my student days… But I digress.

I am aware that this blog is supposed to be about baking and now the second recipe (!!!!) is a non-bake (!!!) cheesecake… Oops. It didn’t take me long to divert, did it?

Normally I buy reduced-sugar biscuits when I buy some. This time, I went for regular supermarket own brand biscuits because I needed a fair bit for the base and I was very surprised how sweet they were. Next time the reduced sugar ones will go in the base.

The quantities are for a 20cm round springform tin but if you double them, you can use a 24cm springform (and it’s a bit of a more substantial cake…). If you want a really big cake, you use two and a half time the amount in the 24cm tin.

For the base:

  • 75g butter plus a little extra for greasing
  • 175g digestive biscuits
  • For the cheesecake mix:

  • 2 eating apples
  • 150ml apple juice
  • 1 sachet gelatine or the equivalent amount of leaf gelatine
  • 275g Greek yoghurt
  • 250g mascarpone
  • 150g custard
  • honey to taste
    • Method


    1. Grease the tin and line the bottom with greaseproof paper. Put the biscuits in a freezer bag and smash them up with a rolling pin. Melt the butter and mix it into the biscuit crumbs. Fill them into the tin, press them down. Chill.

    2. Core and peel the apples, cut into chunks. Put them into a pan with the apple juice. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Drain. Let the apples and the juice cool.

    3. Make custard, or use ready-made. If you make your own, chill it.

    4. Mix 5 tablespoons of the apple juice with the gelatine. Soak for 5 minutes.

    5. Stir yoghurt, mascarpone and custard together with a wooden spoon until smooth. Sweeten with honey to taste. Stir in the apple . Taste again. Maybe add some more honey.

    6. Put the bowl of gelatine over a small pan of simmering water. Leave until dissolved. Stir into the mixture and pour into the tin.

    7. Chill until set.

    Serve with a quick caramel topping:

    Gently heat 40g soft brown sugar and 25g butter in a thick-based pan, stirring until the sugar dissolves.

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