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Black Forest cheesecake

Desserts in the ’70s were all about Black Forest cake and cheesecakes. We figured a combination of the two could only be a good thing. Instead of the cornflour thickened fruit topping of earlier eras, we’ve opted for lush roast cherries. This can be made well in advance, so it’s the entertainer’s friend.

By Emma Knowles
  • Serves 8
  • 40 mins preparation
  • 1 hr 30 mins cooking plus cooling
Black Forest cheesecake
Black Forest cheesecake

Desserts in the '70s were all about Black Forest cake and cheesecakes. We figured a combination of the two could only be a good thing. Instead of the cornflour thickened fruit topping of earlier eras, we've opted for lush roast cherries. This can be made well in advance, so it's the entertainer's friend.

Ingredients

  • 500 gm cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 250 gm firm ricotta (11/4 cup)
  • 250 gm mascarpone (1 cup)
  • 150 gm caster sugar
  • 150 gm dark chocolate (53%-58% cocoa solids), melted
  • 3 eggs
  • Finely grated rind of ½ orange
  • Cherries, to serve
Chocolate crumb
  • 100 gm caster sugar
  • 220 gm softened butter
  • 240 gm plain flour
  • 75 gm Dutch-process cocoa, sieved
Roast cherries
  • 300 gm cherries, halved and pitted
  • 110 gm caster sugar (1/2 cup)
  • Thinly peeled rind and juice of ½ orange and ½ lemon
  • 20 ml brandy
  • Scraped seeds of 1 vanilla bean

Method

Main
  • 1
    For chocolate crumb, preheat oven to 180C. Butter a 23cm springform cake tin and line the base with baking paper. Beat sugar and 170gm butter in an electric mixer until pale and creamy (1-2 minutes), then scrape down sides of bowl, add flour, cocoa and a pinch of salt and beat to combine. Roll out between 2 sheets of baking paper to 3mm thick, place on a baking tray, remove top piece of baking paper and bake until crisp (8-10 minutes). Cool, then break into rough pieces and process in a food processor to fine crumbs. Melt remaining butter, add to crumbs along with a pinch of salt and process to combine. Press evenly into base of prepared tin and bake until crisp (12-15 minutes). Remove from oven.
  • 2
    Process cream cheese, ricotta, mascarpone, sugar, chocolate, eggs and orange rind in a food processor until smooth, pour onto crumb base and bake until set with a slight wobble in the centre (50 minutes to 1 hour). Allow to cool for 1 hour, then refrigerate until chilled (3-4 hours).
  • 3
    Meanwhile, for roast cherries, preheat oven to 150C, combine ingredients in a roasting pan large enough to hold cherries snugly in a single layer, toss to combine and spread out evenly. Roast until syrupy and cherries are tender (6-8 minutes). Set aside to cool completely.
  • 4
    Serve cheesecake topped with roast cherries, syrup and fresh cherries.