Once Upon A Time

Creamy Mascarpone Cheesecake

I remember when I first started trying to teach myself to cook. My mom wasn’t big on cooking; she was too busy supporting 3 kids to worry about it. She did however make really good lasagna, chili, chicken and dumplings and lemon meringue pie. But she just didn’t have the time to really get into it. So when I was about ten or so, I started playing with our food 😛

My brother or sister were usually the ones to make dinner for us when mom was at work but I liked playing around with baking. Thing is, I never used a cookbook. Strangely enough, I actually succeeded anyway quite a few times. I know now that what I was whipping up when I dumped butter (well, margarine. Mom only got butter at the holidays), sugar, vanilla and flour into a bowl and beat the living hell out of it was a basic pound cake, but back then I just thought I was a genius because I made a cake… all by myself. My brother and sister never complained. I guess even far from perfectly done cakes were ok. They were sweet after all and we were kids hehe. I also had quite a few failures with this basic dump and bake method. I recall many a cake coming out of the pan gummy, tough and undercooked in the middle. We ate those too. They were sweet and we were kids 😀

I still have problems with actually opening a cookbook and following a recipe. Anyone who reads this blog knows how often I completely destroy change a recipe I’ve gotten elsewhere. Usually it works. I get lucky. If not, hey, it’s sweet and I HAVE kids now. They don’t care. 😛

Sometimes though, I find a recipe that sounds yummy enough just the way it’s written that I don’t change much at all anything. The recipe I’m posting today is one of those rare creatures. I borrowed a Gourmet cookbook from the library recently. OMG, I love this book. I have so many paged marked (not literally) to make the recipes. When I saw this recipe for Mascarpone Cheesecake, I knew I had to make it. I had bought a tub of Mascarpone a few weeks ago when we weren’t completely broke (there is a reason you get so many inexpensive recipes lol) and was saving it for the “right recipe”. This one was it. The only things I changed was to add the zest of one orange into the filling and about half a teaspoon of orange extract. Not enough of either to actually make it taste orangey, just enough to give it that “ooo, what’s in this? I taste something but I’m not sure what it is” kind of oomph. Mainly, I wanted a reason to decorate the top of it with orange strips hehe. I also used a full 3 packages of cream cheese just cause it seemed silly to use two and a half of them 😛

So if you’re craving cheesecake, give this one a try. It’s rich and creamy without being over the top “I can’t finish a piece of this…it’s too much”. It has the most outstandingly wonderful smooth and creamy texture of any cheesecake I’ve ever tasted or made. Even my non cheesecake loving husband keeps going back and taking bites of the slice I cut for picture taking and my 15 year old says he is going to eat his piece really slowly to make it last lol. I was going to add a sauce to it, but it’s so good I didn’t. Maybe with the leftovers tomorrow.

Creamy Mascarpone Cheesecake

  • Crust-
  • 70 vanilla wafers, finely ground
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • Filling-
  • 3 8 ounce packages of cream cheese, room temp
  • 1 cup mascarpone cheese, room temp
  • 3/4 cup sugar (I used a full cup since I used extra cream cheese)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • zest from one small orange
  • 3/4 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Topping-
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  1. Preheat oven to 350, making sure your oven rack is in the middle..
  2. Combine the cookie crumbs and melted butter in a medium bowl and combine until you have a nice crumbly mixture.  Press onto the bottom and 1 inch up the sides of a 9 inch springform pan.
  3. Bake at 350 for about ten minutes or until light brown. Transfer to a rack to cool.
  4. While it cools, make the filling. In a large bowl, combine the cream cheese, mascarpone and sugar. Beat at high speed for 5 minutes.
  5. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  6. Add the extracts, lemon juice and orange zest and beat at low speed just until combined.
  7. Pour the filling into the cooled crust.
  8. Bake until cheesecake is barely set and still jiggly in the middle, about 30 minutes mine actually took more like 40. But, it should be set on the outside, wiggly near the middle inch or so. It will finish setting up as it cools. Cool slightly in the pan for about 20 minutes.
  9. Make the topping-
  10. Stir together the topping ingredients in a small bowl.
  11. Spoon topping over the still warm cheesecake and return to the oven for about ten minutes or just until the topping looks set and not runny.
  12. Run a knife around the edges of the cheesecake to prevent cracking. Cool completely in the pan on a rack before taking the sides off of the cake. Best bet is to refrigerate it overnight.
  13. Use a knife dipped in hot water to make clean cuts. Or just grab a spoon and hide in the closet and eat this.

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21 thoughts on “Once Upon A Time

  1. I cannot believe you are a self taught baker – you are soo awesome 😀
    Just as awesome in fact as this delicious cheesecake – I have never tried marscapone but you give me incentive to try!

    Choc Chip Uru

  2. When I was a kid my mom ruled the kitchen, so I did not bake or cook that much. Even today she cannot sit by passively why anyone cooks or bakes. You were lucky to have the opportunity to experiment in the kitchen at such a young age.
    For you to post a recipe that is un-tweeked, is definitely a clue that it is mighty delicious. Ha-funny that the son is slowly savoring his piece, you must have run low on pieces very quickly. Now I am wondering who moves their fork with all the talent of the Nascar driver when the dessert is presented….

  3. I made a mascarpone cheesecake, too…and serve it with balsamic strawberries. It is so, so good…as I know yours is, too!!! What a gorgeous slice 🙂

  4. That cheesecake look so good! I also started cooking when I was really young, even though my mom loved to cook I always did it by myself. You turned into real baker..One thing I can’t make is cheesecake, I mean good cheesecake..no matter how many times I look in the cookbook or watch a video never turn into cheesecake if you know what I mean LOL!..so you are gifted my friend!
    Thanks for sharing and have a beautiful day!!!xo

  5. I’m yet to bake a cheesecake with mascarpone and ricotta but this one sounds like the one that should be made quickly. I’m sure the zest of orange would really bump up the flavor. This looks great Janet! You’re such a talented baker. 🙂

  6. The cheesecake looks amazing and I’m glad you found the right recipe for the marscapone. I also think you ARE a genius for making a pound cake at such a young age!

  7. Pingback: Burning Down The Kitchen with From Cupcakes to Caviar while making her Coconut Caramel Cookie Bars | Cravings of a Lunatic

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