Baked cream cheese tart or Cream cheese fridge tart – which do you prefer?
Further choices are – a pastry base or a biscuit (cookie) crumb base; cream cheese, cottage cheese or quark – as used in the German cheesecake – for the filling, with or without eggs.
My favorite cream cheese tart was of the baked variety, with a pastry base, extending up the side. This was served at D’oude Werf in Dorp street, Stellenbosch, in the ’90s. A special treat was a slice of this delectable cake/tart with an iced coffee – South African style, made with ice cream, mik, cream, and full-bodied coffee. I wonder whether it would still taste as good today!
I was not partial to the cream cheese fridge tart as it often had a lot of gelatin and lacked the light creaminess of the baked variety. This latest easy recipe of mine for cheese fridge tart has, however, made me re-think my preferences!
I hope you enjoy this as much as I have – especially in the hot weather when one keeps oven cooking or baking to a minimum.
- 1½ packs (of three) in the 14.4 ounce box of Graham crackers, approximately 2 cups
- ¾ stick (3 ounces) butter
- 1 envelope (¼ ounce) gelatin, approximately 2 teaspoons
- ¼ cup cold water
- 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 2 8-ounce packets cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped
- Crumb the crackers in a blender or place them a plastic bag and use a rolling pin to crumb.
- Mix the crumbs and melted butter and press into a non-stick 9-inch spring-form pan. (If you think it may stick, line the base and sides with parchment paper). Use the base of a measuring cup or similar item to compact the crumbs in an even layer on the base.
- Bake at 350˚F for 10-15 minutes. Set aside to cool (see Notes).
- Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water and set aside for 2-3 minutes to sponge.
- Set over a little hot (boiled and turned off) water, to clarify. (see Notes http://capepointpress.com/pineapple-cream/)
- Mix the condensed milk with the lemon juice in a large bowl, until thick.
- Add the cream cheese and beat for 2-3 minutes until quite smooth.
- Add the gelatin and mix well.
- Fold in the whipped cream.
- Scrape onto the prepared base and refrigerate for 10-12 hours or overnight.
Decorate as wished or serve plain, with fresh berries and whipped cream.