Goat Cheesecake Enrobed in Hazelnut Brittle
Creamy yet light, with a tangy intensity from the goat cheese and crème fraîche, this cheesecake is a favorite of many of our customers at chanterelle and is remarkably easy to prepare. The brittle that enrobes the cake is a bit more difficult to make, but the cheesecake works well without it-you can replace the brittle with simple crushed nuts for a crunchy contrast to the creamy cheesecake.
Storage: The cheesecake will keep, refrigerated, for 4 days.
Total Timeunder 4 hours
Make Ahead RecipeYes
OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Family Get-together, Formal Dinner Party
Equipmentbaking/gratin dish, electric mixer, springform pan
Taste and Texturecreamy, crunchy, nutty, sweet, tangy
Type of Dishcake, cheesecake, dessert
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- ½ cup sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 10½ ounces fresh goat cheese, at room temperature
- ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons (5 ounces) creme fraiche
- ½ recipe Peanut Brittle, substituting hazelnuts
- 6-inch round springform pan, or six 4-ounce ramekins or individual aluminum cupcake molds
- Thermometer (optional)
- Roasting pan or baking pan, at least 8 × 8 × 2 inches
Preheat the oven to 300°F. Butter or oil a 6-inch springform pan or individual ramekins or molds.
Mix the batter:
Combine the eggs, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl and whisk for 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in the goat cheese until smooth. Add the crème fraîche and whisk for 1 minute. Do not overmix or the cheesecake will have a grainy texture.
Bake the cheesecake:
Spread the batter in the prepared pans or molds. If using a springform pan, wrap a large piece of aluminum foil around the outside, making sure the foil fully encases the pan so that once you set the pan in a deep water bath, none of the water seeps in. Place the foil-wrapped pan in a roasting pan and fill with water so that it comes up 1½ inches along the side of the springform. Bake the cheesecake until the center is set or a thermometer in the center of the cheesecake reads between 150°F and 170°F, approximately 40 minutes. (An air bubble or two might rise to the surface, but the cheesecake will barely expand.)
If you are using individual cheesecakes, you do not need a water bath. Bake the individual cheesecakes for 20 to 24 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through the baking process. If the cheesecakes start to rise, remove them from the oven immediately.
Remove the cheesecake from the oven and allow it to cool. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill for 30 minutes before removing the sides of the springform pan.
Enrobe the cheesecake:
Follow the recipe for Peanut Brittle, substituting hazelnuts for the almonds. Using both hands, pat the ground Hazelnut Brittle onto the top and the sides of the chilled cheesecake.
This cheesecake works beautifully with the Blood Orange Caramel Sauce, the Fresh Fig and Madeira Compote, and the Roasted Medjool Dates Stuffed with Cashews, Currants, and Candied Citrus.
2006 Kate Zuckerman