Fabulous Raspberry-Lemon Cheesecake

By • July 5, 2011 • 17 Comments



Author Notes: My maternal grandparents were born and raised in a small town in southwest Louisiana. Both came from humble origins, and after WWII, my grandpa took over a family restaurant and made it his own. He and my grandmother, Nanny, were beautiful, bright people who ran Frank and Bob's together, and traveled often to restaurant conventions around the U.S. On one such trip, Nanny picked up a recipe for the perfect cheesecake and proceeded to make roughly 6 a week at the restaurant for many, many years.
I grew up eating her cherry cheesecake for special occasions; my Dad always asked for it on his birthday. Nanny is 90 now and doesn't cook anymore;
over the years, this cheesecake recipe has evolved a bit as well but still retains its glorious creaminess.
I've adapted it to utilize fresh lemon juice and zest, rather than lemon extract. As well, I love fresh raspberries, and put them not only on top and inside but also as a layer in between by making a raspberry curd and spreading it on the cake when it (cake) is still slightly warm.
This is a delicious homage to my family and many wonderful memories.
em-i-lis

Makes 1 cheesecake

For the raspberry curd (adapted from epicurious)

  • 6 ounces fresh raspberries
  • 1/4 + 1/8 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/16 teaspoon salt
  1. Place the raspberries, sugar, egg, lemon juice, butter and salt in a 2 quart saucepan over medium heat. Stir constantly but gently until the mixture starts to thicken and bubble around the edges, 5-7 minutes. Strain the curd into a bowl, pressing on the solids to release all liquid. Chill the curd for several hours or up to a day, and dispose of the solids that remain in the strainer.

For the cheesecake

  • 14 graham crackers
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 pound full fat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup evaporated milk
  • 2.5 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • zest of 1.5 lemons
  • 6 ounces fresh raspberries, divided
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Put the graham crackers in a ziploc and pulverize them with a rolling pin, or blitz them in your food processor. You want small, consistently-sized crumbs. Toss with the melted butter until fairly evenly distributed and then pour the mix into a 9" springform pan, pressing gently down to compact the crust. Place into the oven and cook for 5-6 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside while you prepare the cheesecake filling. Reduce oven heat to 325 F.
  2. Beat the egg whites until stiff, and set aside.
  3. Put the cream cheese in a large mixing bowl, and beat well. Add the egg yolks, blend well, and then do the same with the sugar and flour. Add the evaporated milk, lemon juice, and lemon zest, and blend well. Once everything is well incorporated, gently stir in the stiff egg whites; then, carefully fold in 3 ounces of fresh raspberries.
  4. Pour this mixture into your graham cracker-lined pan, and bake 55-60 minutes. The cake will be golden brown, the edges might have started to release from the sides, and it will look firm. Do not worry if the top sinks in slightly after you remove the cake from the oven.
  5. Cool the cheesecake on a wire rack until almost at room temperature. Remove the raspberry curd from the fridge and pour and spread over the top of the cake. Use the remaining 3 ounces of fresh raspberries to dot the top of the curd-iced cake. Refrigerate until cold and ready to serve.

Tags: delicious, serves a crowd, simple, sweet and savory

Comments (17) Questions (0)

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Lorigoldsby

about 3 years ago lorigoldsby

Sweet headnote! Love the raspberry curd,!

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about 3 years ago Midge

Sounds amazing. Love the raspberry curd!

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about 3 years ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you, Midge!!

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about 3 years ago Michele Capecchi

Emily!!
What an AMAZING evolution of a fantastic recipe!
What else can I say....I already have so many good reasons to come to visit you as soon as possible. But after reading about this family recipe, it's mendatory to include an official cheesecake tasting (maybe peering it with a good French dessert sweet wine?) next time we will come to the US....
I miss you all!
Michele

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about 3 years ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

What a dear note, Michele. I sure miss y'all too. Aah, DC to Italy- wish we were closer. I will happily make you this cheesecake next time I see you. Love, Emily

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about 3 years ago Michele Capecchi

Emily!!
What an AMAZING evolution of a fantastic recipe!
What else can I say....I already have so many good reasons to come to visit you as soon as possible. But after reading about this family recipe, it's mendatory to include an official cheesecake tasting (maybe peering it with a good French dessert sweet wine?) next time we will come to the US....
I miss you all!
Michele

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about 3 years ago lapadia

A fabulous cheesecake it is!!...very similar to one I haven't made in a few years, in fact, my recipe is even written to use exactly 14 crushed graham crackers :)

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about 3 years ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Oh, that's neat. Wonder about the provenance of the 14 crushed grahams?? :)

Massimo's_deck_reflection_10_27_13

about 3 years ago lapadia

I acquired my recipe from an ex-supervisor’s next door neighbor, who came from Mexico. It uses fresh lemon juice, has a sour cream layer over the cheesecake and then cherries with glaze. In fact I still have the original recipe that was written for me, a piece of paper that is turning yellow with time. I have had the recipe since 1976! So similar to your recipe…delicious!

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about 3 years ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

You are very smart to wait and make. I've still got my spoon in hand. :) It gets better, so if you have time, make it a day in advance!

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about 3 years ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so very much for your comments. Let me know how you like this! I'm really loving (though eating too much of) it right now. :)

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about 3 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Toooo funny. Notice that I'm waiting to make this until there are others to gobble it up so I don't eat it all!! It looks addictive. Totally addictive. Any dessert that's made 6 times a week for many years for a restaurant has got to be outrageously good. And you've obviously made it better. ;o)

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about 3 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Oh my!! What a lovely homage to your dear Nanny. And oh, what a perfectly gorgeous cheesecake. The combination of the raspberries and tart lemon seems divine, while cutting the richness of the cheesecake. Thank you so much for sharing this. I plan to make it for a special event soon!!. ;o)

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about 3 years ago Sugartoast

Lovely indeed, thanks Emily!
(and should I be so lucky to taste a piece...)

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about 3 years ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you both!

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about 3 years ago nogaga

What a beautiful headnote! And your recipe looks rich and wonderful!

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about 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I love the story and the cheesecake is divne. The raspberry curd is a great idea.