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Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Kumquat Tofu Cheesecake

I'm sad winter is over and spring is soon to follow. I love winter because it means our citrus trees start producing, and from winter to the start of spring we get our crop of kumquats, oranges, and tangelos. This year, some unseasonable winds knocked down what remained of our kumquat crop, so I'm glad I got to make this cake for my mother's birthday before that happened!

Don't let the name scare you, this tofu cheesecake isn't a health food. However, it retains that creaminess that you love about cheesecake, while boasting a lot more protein than a traditional cheesecake. I bet you if you chose to stay mum about the fact it was packed with protein, your guests wouldn't even know it had tofu in it. It's also a bake-free cheesecake, which is great since we are having a serious heat wave here in Southern California.

If you don't have access to kumquats, you could serve this with no topping at all, or any fresh fruit that you choose. I think blueberries, strawberries, or raspberries would be a great topping choice! Of course, if you have any jars of kinkan no kanroni in your cupboard, you're good to go.

This recipe is adapted from recipes who use the metric system and different size cups, so while I converted the recipe, I also included some weights where applicable because it's more accurate.

Kumquat Tofu Cheesecake
adapted from these two sources

1 cup (95g) of finely crushed gingersnap cookies (I used Trader Joe's)
1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted
1 tbs brown sugar

1/4 cup + 2 tbs warm water
1 packet of unflavored gelatin
1 8 ounce package of cream cheese
1/3 of a block of silken soft tofu (150g)
1/2 stick unsalted butter
1/4 cup + 2 tbs granulated sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice

Candied Kumquat Topping:
10 kumquats, thinly sliced and deseeded
1/2 cup of water
1 cup of sugar

For the base: Combine the crushed cookies, melted butter, and brown sugar and stir until combined. Press into a 8" round pan with removable bottom, patting in firmly and consider using a spoon or the bottom of a glass to make sure it is smooth. Place in the freezer while you make the filling and topping (about an hour in the freezer is good).

For the filling: In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin packet over the warm water. Set aside to let it bloom. Next, beat together the cream cheese, tofu, and butter until smooth. Beat in the sugar and lemon juice until combined. Stir the bloomed gelatin and water mixture, then beat into the filling mixture.

For the topping: Heat the sugar and water for the candied kumquats over medium-high heat until it boils, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add kumquats and reduce to a simmer. Simmer until kumquats are tender and syrup has reduced, about 15 minutes. Let cool, then place in fridge.

Assembly and serving: After the filling has had ample time in the fridge, you can remove the cheesecake from the pan. Spoon the kumquat topping over the cheesecake. You will probably have some leftover, which you can pass around separately or save for another use.

See Also:
Arnold Palmer Popsicles
Gluten Free Cranberry Bliss Bars
Strawberry Romanoff Butter Mochi

1 comment:

  1. This looks delicious but I wonder if it can be made vegetarian. I wonder if agar agar would set firmly enough to use in lieu of the gelatin.