Monday, June 17, 2013

Fiadone - Corsican Cheesecake

Sounds crazy or not, but when I have something particular in mind, its so like me to browse for recipes till I can't browse anymore, shortlist many, get all muddled up about which of those to try, procrastinate and procrastinate. Then most of the times, try the simplest of them all. The ricotta I made recently was begging to be used up before it could no longer be called fresh. An image of Fiadone caught my eye.  Okay, lets be honest, apart from the tempting images, 'easy' sounded so good, considering my really sore back. Curiosity and Google led me to Helene's Tartelette. Look no further!

Fiadone is a cheesecake from the island of Corsica, a French Island. Its made out of brocciu or brousse, which is whey cheese made out of goat's milk.  Helene's description of fiadone being a cross between a  flan and a cheesecake had me! I love flans though I can't say I have fallen in love with every cheesecake I have met. But then  a cheesecake is something I have wanted to bake since long, but never quite got to baking it. And now a promisng recipe so very easy, Fiadone it would be then!

Its entirely another matter that I made Fiadone thrice within a week, but thankfully I had company to help finish it! The first two attempts produced cheesecakes which ballooned in the oven - what on earth! Did I over beat the eggs or blitzing the ricotta for a smoother cake added to it? Wrote to Helene. Apparently nothing wrong with the procedure, oven hot spot may be?  Alright, I can’t sleep till this is right! Baked the cheesecake yet again in my old OTG and yes! the cake behaved itself! The texture was predictably more gritty in comparison to the cheesecake with the blitzed ricotta having a smoother texture (image below).

Not your usual cheesecake, but delicious nevertheless! So very easy to make, the ingredients, pantry staples.

The recipe is one you can’t forget in a hurry, barely 4 ingredients and hardly any steps. Here goes. The best part is you could bake this with ricotta or even well drained yogurt says Helene!

Fiadone – Corsican Cheesecake
Minimally adapted from here

Serves 6-9

Sugar – ½ cup minus 1 tablespoon (measured and powdered)
Eggs - 3 large / 144 grams
Finely grated lemon zest – 1 teaspoon
Pure vanilla extract – 1 teaspoon
Cornstarch  - 1 tablespoon
pinch of salt
Ricotta cheese or faisselle - 1 cup drained ( weighed about 225 grams)

Procedure : Line an 8x8-inch square pan with parchment paper, butter  lightly and set aside.  Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C / 375F and position a rack in the middle.  In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar and the eggs until pale ( I did this on speed 4 of my hand mixer  for about  1.5 minutes, did not want to whip longer in case it ballooned again). Add the lemon zest, cornstarch, vanilla and salt and whisk until blended.  Add the drained cheese and whisk well ( I used a wire whisk). Pour into your prepared pan, place into the oven and lower the heat to 180 degrees C / 350F.  Bake for 40-45 minutes (mine baked in 35 minutes). The cake does not rise, it gets dark around the edges and a knife inserted in the middle should come out clean. Let cool for a few minutes before cutting into squares.

I must admit, though it may not be the done thing,  I loved the smooth texture  the blended ricotta  lent to  the cheesecakes that ballooned.  But rest assured, smooth or not,  set or ballooned, its unlikely that you will dislike this dessert.  Go ahead, give it a try! You have no excuse not to bake yourself a cheesecake when you crave for one, albeit not your usual kind.  And yes, let me know how you made it and how you liked it!

Thanks again Ajay for the pictures! Have been telling him, I should resume taking pictures or I am likely to forget how to take them :)


Sum said...

So many tempting recipes, Suma.... Lovely....

Jayasri Ravi said...

Oh! Looks beautiful, I am not fan of cheese at all, but my daughter is she loves them to tee definitely will give this a try

Archana Kumar said...

Didn't imagine a cheesecake that looked like this ! Sounds simple enough

Priya Suresh said...

Never had a chance to taste this cheesecake,looks fantastic.