Stem Ginger, Hazelnut, Dark Chocolate Baked Drambuie Cheesecake
with Drambuie Poached Pears
Crunchy ginger biscuit base, creamy stem ginger and Drambuie baked cheesecake topped with rich dark chocolate ganache and spiced poached pears.
- Short on time?Hack: Top a ready-made vanilla cheesecake with the Drambuie poached pears and dark chocolate ganache.
- Prepare30 minutes.
- Cook1 hour 10 minutes, plus 4 hours or overnight to set.
FOR THE DRAMBUIE POACHED PEARS
- zest and juice of 1 orange
- seeds of ½ a vanilla pod
- 200g caster sugar
- 80ml Drambuie Honeyed Liqueur
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 star anise
- 2 cloves
- 4 small conference pears
FOR THE GINGER CHEESECAKE BASE
- 50g hazelnuts
- 250g ginger biscuits
- 110g unsalted butter
FOR THE BAKED CHEESECAKE TOPPING
- 675g full fat cream cheese
- 130g caster sugar
- seeds of ½ a vanilla pod
- 4 large eggs
- 70g full fat sour cream
- 50ml Drambuie Honeyed Liqueur
- 4 stem ginger balls, finely chopped
FOR THE CHOCOLATE TOPPING
- 150g double cream
- 120ml dark chocolate, very finely chopped
- 1 tbsp liquid glucose / glucose syrup
- 15g butter
1. First poach the pears. Add the orange zest, juice, vanilla seeds, sugar, Drambuie, cinnamon, cloves, and 450ml water to a wide saucepan. Set over a medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves then turn up the heat until it begins to simmer.
2. Peel the pears carefully, keeping the stem intact then halve each lengthways. Lower the pears into the simmering liquid, ensuring all pears are covered. Simmer gently for 10 minutes then remove from the heat, cover with a lid and leave at room temperature for 1 hour to allow the flavours to infuse.
3. Continue with the cheesecake while the pears are poaching. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Line a 23cm round spring-form tin with baking paper.
4. Tip the hazelnuts onto an oven tray and cook for 5 minutes until lightly toasted and fragrant. Cool completely on the tray.
5. Add the biscuits to a food processor and blitz to fine crumbs. Add the hazelnuts and blitz again until the same size as the biscuit crumbs. Add the butter to a pan set over medium heat, leave to melt, stirring occasionally then set aside to cool before pouring into the biscuit crumbs and blitzing very briefly until combined. Tip into a 23cm spring-from cake tin then press down with the base of a glass. Chill for 1 hour.
6. To make the cheesecake topping add the cream cheese to a large bowl along with the sugar, vanilla seeds and beat until combined. One by one add the eggs, beating between every addition then beat in the sour cream until combined. Pour in the Drambuie and beat briefly until combined then stir in the stem ginger pieces. Pour into the prepared base and place the tin on a baking tray before cooking for 50 minutes. The edge of the cheesecake needs to be set but the centre will have a slight wobble when shaken. Turn the oven off but leave the cheesecake inside for an hour with the door only slightly open before chilling for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
7. For the chocolate topping add the cream and liquid glucose to a saucepan set over a low-medium heat and warm until gently steaming but not boiling. Add the chocolate to a heatproof bowl then pour over the warm cream, stand for 30 seconds before whisking to combine then whisk in the butter until melted. Spread over the top of the cheesecake leaving a 2cm boarder. Arrange some of the pears over the top of the cheesecake and serve with the poaching juices.