Serves 6 to 8
Funnily Kirsch doesn’t do anything for me but I simply adore fresh, ripe cherries. When I was a child, my brothers and I used to hope over the wall of our absent neighbours, into their amazing walled garden and sit under the cherry tree, savouring every mouthful of these delicious fruits. Sadly that cherry tree is long gone now, but the memories remain as clear as daylight.
40g butter, melted
120g amaretti biscuits
A scant ¼ tsp ground ginger
200ml double cream
3 tbsp ground almonds
160g caster sugar
3 tbsp honey
1 tbsp candied lemon peel
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
300g cherries, washed
Icing Sugar, to decorate
Thin lemon strips, to decorate
Preheat the oven to 170°C/fan 150°C/gas 3. Brush the sides and base of a 20cm spring form tin with melted butter.
Place the biscuits and ginger into a food processor and blend until the biscuits are finely processed. Tip them into a bowl, pour in enough melted butter for the biscuits to combine.
Spoon the biscuits into the prepared spring form tin and press down into the base of the tin.
Place the ricotta, cream, ground almonds, eggs, sugar, honey, lemon peel and vanilla bean paste into a food processor and blend until smooth.
Destone one third of the cherries and lightly blend and stir into the ricotta mix.
Pour the ricotta mix into the biscuit base and carefully place in the oven to bake for about 50 minutes or until the cheesecake is lightly golden and slightly wobbly when you shake it.
Remove from the oven, place on a cooling rack and cover the top loosely, leave to cool completed before placing it in the fridge.
Remove from the tin and slide onto a cake stand. Dust with icing sugar and sprinkle the cherries over the top. Decorate with lemon strips.
Tip: Take the cheesecake out of the fridge half an hour before you want to decorate and serve as the flavours will be stronger.