Baked cheesecake with blackcurrant kissel

Baked cheesecake with blackcurrant kissel

How to Cook Desserts
Peter Cassidy

Of Eastern European origin, kissel can be made with any sour soft fruit and served with rice pudding or ice cream, as well as with a baked cheesecake. It can also be made a little thinner and eaten as a sweet soup. As it is served hot, the kissel needs to be thickened at the last minute, but the blackcurrant juice can be made ahead. You will need a 23cm round springform cake tin.


Quantity Ingredient

For the base

Quantity Ingredient
75g butter
150g digestive biscuits
2 tablespoons caster sugar

For the topping

Quantity Ingredient
6 tablespoons caster sugar
20g cornflour
500g cream cheese
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 eggs
200ml double cream

For the kissel

Quantity Ingredient
450g blackcurrants, fresh or frozen
1 orange
1 cinnamon stick
170g caster sugar
2 teaspoons arrowroot


  1. Heat the oven to 200°C. Line the base of the springform tin with greaseproof paper.
  2. Melt the butter for the base and crush the biscuits by placing them in a plastic bag and bashing with a rolling pin (or whiz them briefly in a food processor). Transfer to a bowl and stir in the melted butter and the sugar. Press this mixture into the base of the prepared tin. Bake in the oven for 10–15 minutes, then remove and leave to cool.
  3. Reduce the oven temperature to 150°C. For the topping, put 4 tbsp of the sugar with the cornflour into a mixing bowl and, using a wooden spoon, beat in the cream cheese and vanilla.
  4. Separate the eggs into 2 medium bowls. Beat the yolks into the cream cheese mixture along with the cream.
  5. Whisk the egg whites to medium peaks. Whisk in the remaining 2 tbsp sugar, then carefully fold into the cream cheese mixture, using a large metal spoon or spatula.
  6. Pour the mixture over the cooled biscuit base and bake in the lower half of the oven for 45–60 minutes until the topping has just set; it should have a slight uniform wobble.
  7. Meanwhile, to make the kissel, wash the blackcurrants and remove the stalks, if necessary. Finely grate the orange zest and squeeze the juice. Place the blackcurrants, zest and juice in a medium saucepan with the cinnamon and most of the sugar. Add enough water to come just to the top of the fruit and simmer gently for 20 minutes, or until the fruit is soft.
  8. Remove the cinnamon and press the fruit and juice through a sieve, discarding the seeds and skin from the sieve. Return the sieved juices to the pan. Taste and add more sugar if necessary.
  9. Once the cheesecake has cooled and is ready to serve, bring the pan of blackcurrant syrup to the boil. Mix the arrowroot with a little cold water in a small bowl to make a smooth paste. Add a ladleful of the hot blackcurrant syrup to the arrowroot and mix thoroughly, then add the arrowroot mixture back into the fruit syrup and stir well. Bring to the boil, stirring, while the mixture thickens. Remove from the heat as soon as it has boiled as, unlike flour, arrowroot should not be simmered.
  10. Serve the cheesecake in slices, with some warm kissel poured over each slice.
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