Fennel seed and orange cheesecake
- April 2023
- Serves 8
- Hands-on time 35 min, plus at least 4 hours chilling
Fennel and orange is a classic combination in savoury dishes, but it’s just as good in a sweet setting – as this cheesecake proves. The candied fennel seeds on top are super simple and add an extra punch of aniseed flavour.
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- 59.3g (36.1g saturated)
- 46g (26.4g sugars)
- 150g rolled oats
- 1½ tbsp fennel seeds
- 150g digestive biscuits
- 110g unsalted butter
- ¼ tsp sea salt flakes
- 250g mascarpone
- 300g cream cheese
- 100g caster sugar
- 4 tbsp marmalade
- Finely grated zest 2 oranges, plus 2 tbsp juice
- 300g double cream
- 1 tbsp soft brown sugar
- Heat the oven to 180°C fan/gas 6. Put the oats and half the fennel seeds on a tray and toast in the oven for 10 minutes, stirring halfway through to get an even colour. Transfer to a food processor with the biscuits, butter and salt, then whizz to a sandy texture. Line the cake tin with baking paper, then pour in the biscuit crumb mix and press down firmly to create an even base. Leave to set in the fridge.
- Beat the mascarpone, cream cheese and caster sugar until light and fluffy, then stir in the marmalade, orange juice and three quarters of the orange zest. Whip the cream to soft peaks (that flop over), then fold into the cream cheese mixture using a large metal spoon and pour over the chilled base, spreading evenly. Put in the fridge to chill and set for at least 4 hours or ideally overnight.
- To make the candied fennel seed garnish, put the soft brown sugar and 1 tbsp water in a small pan over a medium heat and cook for a minute or so until reduced a little and bubbling. Pour in the remaining fennel seeds and continue cooking for another minute or two, stirring continuously. Once the water has all evaporated, the seeds will begin to look sugar coated and separate. Leave to cool, then stir in the remaining zest. Sprinkle over the chilled cheesecake and serve.
Toasting the oats unlocks their sweet nuttiness, so don’t skip this step! We think it makes the cheesecake taste like marmalade on toast.
The cheesecake will keep covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.
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