Easter is here, are you ready? You feasting? If your Sunday includes remembering where you hid that last damned egg, or if it looks something like sleeping until 10:30, lazing in a comfy chair and sipping languidly on your coffee (damn you, I was you once), I really think you should make and then eat this cheesecake. After a catering gig that included a bunch of wee tiramisus, I had a bit of mascarpone cheese left over, and you just don’t let that stuff go to waste. Paired with cream cheese, Meyer lemons and rosemary, well. It is so good. Like “biblical proportions” good. I’ll stop there, before I start blaspheming. Where’s that coffee?
Mascarpone Meyer Lemon Cheesecake with Vanilla Rosemary Crust*
yields one 6″ cheesecake
40 Nilla wafers
1 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
5 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Pinch kosher salt
10 oz cream cheese, room temp
4 oz mascarpone cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Zest of one Meyer lemon
1 Tbsp freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 c sour cream
1/4 c sugar
juice of 1 Meyer lemon
1 c heavy whipping cream
For the Crust:
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Place the cookies and rosemary in the bowl of a food processor and process to fine crumbs. Pour in the butter and mix together by hand. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 6″ springform pan. Chill for 10 minutes in the refrigerator. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until slightly toasty. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature. Keep the oven on!
For the Filling
Using a hand mixer or on an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and mascarpone on medium speed until smooth and combined. Add the sugar, vanilla, zest, and juice and continue to beat. Add the egg, yolk, and salt and mix again until well incorporated. Scrape down the bowl and mix for another minute.
Pour the filling into the cooled crust and smooth out the top. Create a water bath by placing the cheesecake into a larger cake pan or roasting pan and filling the outer pan with enough hot water to reach halfway up the side of the cheesecake. This will insure even baking and decrease the chance of the cheesecake cracking on top.
Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until the cheesecake jiggles in the center and is soft but set on the edge.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the water bath for 15 minutes before removing and chilling the rest of the way in the refrigerator. Allow to fully chill and set before removing from the pan and serving, at least 2 hours.
For the Topping
Combine the sour cream, sugar, lemon juice and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer (or use a hand mixer) and whip until the mixture thickens and the sugar is dissolved. Add the cream and continue to whip until soft peaks form. Spread onto the cheesecake.
Eat with reckless abandon.