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Apricot Cheesecake

ingredients

serves 8
1/2 stick (4 Tbsp) 50 g butter or margarine
1/4 cup (50 g) 2 oz Demerara (raw) sugar
100 g oatcake biscuits, finely crumbled

for the filling

1 cup (175 g) dried apricots, soaked overnight and drained
juice of 2 oranges
3 tbsp honey
225 g full fat soft cheese
2 eggs, separated
1/2 cup (100 g) 4 oz sugar
4 tbsp soured cream
15 g powdered gelatine
5 tbsp water
50 g ratafias, coarsely crumbled

for the topping

2/3 cup (150 ml) 1/4 pt double or whipping cream, whipped
50 g ratafias

accompaniments (you may need these)

method

1. Melt the butter or margarine in a saucepan. Stir in the demerara sugar and biscuit crumbs.

2. Press evenly over the bottom of a greased loose-bottomed 18-20 cm/7-8 inch round cake tin. Chill while you make the filling.

3. Put the apricots into a saucepan with the orange juice and honey. Cover and simmer gently until the apricots are just tender.

4. Put the apricots and their juice into the blender goblet and blend until smooth. Allow to cool.

5. Soften the cheese in a large mixing bowl. Beat in the egg yolks, 50g/2oz of the caster sugar, the soured cream and apricot puree.

6. Put the gelatine and water into a small heatproof bowl over a saucepan of hot water and stir until the gelatine has dissolved.

7. Beat the gelatine into the cheese mixture. Leave on one side until the mixture is on the point of setting.

8. Whisk the egg whites until stiff, then whisk in the remaining caster sugar.

9. Fold lightly but thoroughly into the cheese mixture, together with the crumbled ratafias.

10. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and shake the tin gently to level the surface. Chill for 3-4 hours or until the filling is set.

11. Carefully release the sides of the tin from the cheesecake and lift the set cheesecake out on the tin base.

12. Spread the top of the cheesecake with a thin layer of melted apricot jam.

13. Decorate with the whipped cream and ratafias.

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