I do not like cheesecake. I never have. I think it’s highly overrated, dense, heavy, sits like a huge rock in the pit of your stomach.
I never order it in a restaurant, that is until one day last summer…
Jolly and I were at one of my favorite Richmond (VA) restaurants – Bistro Bobette. The featured dessert was a lemon-goat cheese cheesecake. Now, I love lemon, anyone who has cooked with me knows I use them virtually daily in my cooking, but lemon desserts, well I often find them very cloying and unnatural in flavor, so another dessert option I typically steer clear of. Let’s face it I am a chocolate and caramel girl!
For some reason on that hot night in late July, lemon, goat cheese cheesecake sounded appealing. It was way more than appealing. I devoured it in seconds, wishing for seconds, making all kinds of ooohhhs and ahhhhs while eating it! It was amazing! Light and fluffy, smooth and creamy, just a hint of lemon, enough to refresh but not cause your lips to pucker.
I thought about that cheesecake for weeks after and keep saying I need to create one. Yet it wasn’t until earlier this month when faced with a lot of leftover ricotta from making gnocchi that the light bulb went off – make and freeze more gnocchi OR make dessert!
Well, that was a no-brainer!
So, here it is, the cheesecake for all my fellow cheesecake haters out there. I promise you this is unlike any other cheesecake you have ever tried. Light and fluffy, just the essence of lemon…you will be swayed!
Gluten Free Ricotta-Goat Cheese Cheesecake with Pistachio Crust
1 cup almond flour
1 cup pistachios
1/8-1/2 cup sugar*
5 TB unsalted butter, melted
Preheat the oven to 350.
Butter the bottom of a 8 or 9-inch springform pan.
Process almond flour and pistachios until finely ground, add sugar* 1/8 cup will let the pistachio shine through, 1/2 cup will give you a very sweet crust.
Add melted butter and process until crust starts to come together.
Press into the bottom of prepared pan.
Bake at 350 for 15 minutes.
16 oz whole milk ricotta, room temp
8 oz goat cheese, room temp
1 cup sugar
zest of one lemon
juice of one lemon
1 tsp vanilla
3 large eggs, room temp
Reduce oven heat to 325.
In a small bowl mix sugar and lemon zest, set aside. Fingers work best for this. Mixing the zest with the sugar helps distribute the zest better and even sitting for just a short time perfumes the sugar.
In a large bowl mix cheeses until fluffy.
Add sugar, mix until combined.
Add lemon juice and vanilla and then eggs one at a time. Blend until smooth.
Pour over crust.
Bake at 325 for 50 minutes
Cool completely, then chill a couple of hours before serving.
I topped it with a sauce of fresh blackberries, lemon juice and honey.