Make Ahead

Ottolenghi's Honey & Yogurt Set Cheesecake

April 23, 2021
16 Ratings
Photo by Julia Gartland. Prop Stylist: Veronica Olson. Food Stylist: Anna Billingskog.
  • Prep time 2 hours 10 minutes
  • Cook time 10 minutes
  • Serves 8
Author Notes

"No oven, no bain-marie, no cracks—this is the simplest of cheesecakes! You can make this up to 2 days ahead, topping with honey and thyme just before serving if you like. It will keep in the fridge but the base will soften with time."

This recipe is featured in the story, A Simple, Make-Ahead Menu from Ottolenghi’s Latest Cookbook, sponsored by Ten Speed Press. It is reprinted from Simple, by Yotam Ottolenghi with Tara Wigley and Esme Howarth, with permission from our partner Ten Speed Press.Food52

What You'll Need
  • 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons Greek-style yogurt
  • about 12 Hobnobs (or other oat-flour cookie)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons thyme leaves
  • 14 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1 lemon, finely zested to get 1 teaspoon
  • 5 1/4 ounces white chocolate, broken into 1/2 to 3/4-inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  1. Line a 9-inch springform cake pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Line a sieve with a clean kitchen towel and set above a bowl. Spoon in the yogurt, then draw up the sides of the kitchen towel. Squeeze the yogurt into a ball, pressing out as much liquid as you can. You want to end up with about 1 2/3 cups of thickened yogurt. Set aside until required. Discard the liquid.
  3. Place the Hobnobs in a clean plastic bag and crush them finely with a rolling pin. Mix with the butter and 1 tablespoon of the thyme and spoon into the cake pan, pressing it down to form an even layer. Set aside in the fridge.
  4. Whisk together the cream cheese, strained yogurt, confectioners' sugar, and lemon zest until smooth and combined; this can be done in a stand mixer or using a handheld mixer.
  5. Next melt the chocolate. This needs to be done in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water (taking care that the base of the bowl is not touching the water). Stir the chocolate frequently for 2 to 3 minutes, taking care not to get any moisture into the chocolate as this will cause it to seize. Spoon the melted chocolate into the cream cheese mixture and whisk until combined.
  6. Spread the cream cheese mixture over the cookie base evenly, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours, until set.
  7. When ready to serve, warm the honey in a small saucepan with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoon of thyme leaves until thin and runny. Remove from the heat and drizzle over the cheesecake.
  8. Release the cheesecake from the pan, divide into 8 slices, and serve.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • AKB
  • Savindi
  • Christina McMac
    Christina McMac
  • BarbaraM

10 Reviews

BarbaraM May 3, 2021
I made this substituting feta cheese for some of the yogurt filling and it was delicious!
Missliv May 29, 2020
The filing tasted amazing!!!! Do not drizzle 3 tbsp of honey on it as the final step suggests, it ruined it and made it sickly sweet :( only needs 2 tsp
Laurajena April 30, 2020
After I squeezed the liquid out of the yogurt I ended with a lot less yogurt than the recipe so had to buy more. This recipe is much better tasting a day or two later. Something I didn’t find in the reviews. Mist people were intent on the base being crunchy which in fact is not so nice. Some of the recipe is in ounces and most in cups. Personally I hate cups. So messy and after Weight-watchers arrived In the USA with their scales I thought they’d get with the ounces but no, cups are still in use. Please make your recipes in ounces too.
AKB January 1, 2020
I've made a lot of cheesecakes this year, and this was one of my favorites. Easy, elegant, great flavor and texture.

After reading comments here and elsewhere, I made sure to spend extra time at the straining yogurt step. I also left it to set overnight.

The recipe in the book specifies weights. For anyone who prefers to bake by weights, they are: 500g of yogurt, 200g of cookie for the base, 60g butter, 400g cream cheese, 40g powdered/confectioners sugar, 150g white chocolate, 60g honey. The recipe also specifies that the yogurt should weigh about 340g after straining -- although mine weighed closer to 300g.
Fiona August 14, 2019
This was lovely. The flavours were really delicate. But mine didn't set, even after 4 hours in the fridge. It had set by the next day, long after my guests had been served a messy dessert. There were no complaints though!
Savindi May 28, 2019
I haven’t made this myself but have tasted, and it is absolutely delicious.
limonana May 2, 2019
this sounds great! would like help with those 12 cookies though, can someone specify weight or volume of the amount needed for the crust?
Katie August 29, 2019
Yes! I had the same question, as I couldn't get Hobnobs and will be using graham crackers. I'm going to try doing 10 grahams and see if it looks like the right amount for a 9 inch pan.
Christina M. March 24, 2019
I don't like white chocolate but this is exceptional. You can't taste it, it's just to help it set and give it some depth. Incredibly easy and a huge hit.
judy February 14, 2019
Not a fan of white chocolate. Made this the gelatin way. Knox gelatin and in the fridge. Was delicious. So many variations possible. I liked the thyme and honey. Would not have thought of that flavor profile. Will make again.