This is a healthy dessert showstopper. Picture lusciously tart lemon cheesecake topped with a sweetened raspberry puree – and you can feel free to enjoy it. Everything about this cheesecake has been revamped, from the crust up, to cut the fat and sugar to nearly nil. It takes a bit of time to prepare, but when you take that first rich-tasting, creamy, heavenly bite, you’ll know it was worth every minute.
Light and Luscious Lemon-Raspberry Cheesecake (adapted from Tish Boyle’s Blueberry-Lemon Cheesecake with Gingersnap Crust, Diner Desserts)
yields 10 slices
For the crust:
2 medium bananas
3/4 cup quick oats
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup Stevia In The Raw®
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
For the cheesecake:
20 oz. fat free cream cheese, softened
1 cup Stevia In The Raw®
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
3 eggs, at room temperature
the zest and juice of a large lemon (reserve a teaspoon of juice)
2 cups fat free sour cream, at room temperature
For the raspberry topping:
3 cups raspberries (use a 12 oz. bag of thawed frozen berries if fresh aren’t in season)
1/3 cup Stevia In The Raw®
2 teaspoons cornstarch dissolved in a tablespoon of water
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1. Heat the oven to 450°. Lightly coat a 9″ springform pan with cooking spray.
2. Mash the bananas in a medium bowl. Stir in the remaining crust ingredients. Scrape the crust batter into the springform, and press it with hands or a spatula to cover the bottom of the pan. The batter will be sticky.
3. Bake the crust for about 10 minutes, or until it browns slightly and springs back when pressed. When it’s done, set it aside to cool while you mix up the cheesecake.
4. Turn the oven down to 350°. Combine the cream cheese, Stevia In The Raw® and sugar in a large bowl. Use an electric mixer on low to beat them together for about 2 minutes. Add the cornstarch and beat until well blended. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
5. Use a sturdy spoon to stir in the lemon zest and juice. Add the sour cream and mix until just blended. Give the bowl a final scrape and stir.
6. Wrap the outside of the springform pan with aluminum foil, then scrape the cheesecake batter into the pan. Prepare a bain marie to bake the cheesecake in; if this is your first time making a bain marie, check out this post for guidance. No worries, it’s quite easy.
7. Bake the cake for about 50 minutes, then turn off the oven and leave the cake inside for an additional hour.
8. This is a good time to make the raspberry topping. Pulverize the raspberries in a blender or food processor, then press them through a sieve to strain out the seeds. Combine the sieved raspberries with the rest of the topping ingredients in a small saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture begins to thicken. Cover the pan and set the topping aside.
9. Take the cheesecake out of the oven, discard the water bath, and peel off the foil. Set the cake on a wire rack to cool for about an hour.
10. Run a sharp knife along the sides of the cake several times to make sure it’s not sticking to the pan. Release the springform to make sure everything’s cool, then lock it back into place. Spread the raspberry topping over the cake – now all those pesky cracks are filled. Cover the cake with plastic wrap and pop it into the fridge for at least four hours to make sure it’s completely chilled. When it’s time to serve the cake, run a knife between it and the pan one more time for good measure before releasing the springform.
Per slice: 217 calories; 2 g fat (.5 g sat); 64 mg cholesterol; 465 mg sodium; 32.8 g carbohydrates; 3.8 g fiber; 12.9 g protein