Silky apricot cheesecake based on whipped cream and curd cheese filling plus just the right amount of not-overly-crunchy crust makes for one delicious dessert you’ll put on a rotation in your repertoire.
2tablespoonsvanilla instant pudding mixapproximately one small package
1lemongrated zest only
7ouncesheavy whipping cream
6-7freshor canned quartered apricots
Optional 2-3 teaspoons confectioner's sugar for dusting
(Crust) In a large mixing bowl combine crust ingredients. Whip them together with a rubber spatula for 3-4 minutes. Remove spatula and knead with your hands until ingredients integrate completely making one thick and well-congealed mass. Cover mixing bowl (or wrap in saran wrap) and leave in fridge for 30 minutes. Meanwhile prepare the filling.
(Filling) Eliminate excess cheese water by wrapping cheese in a clean dish towel then squeezing and twisting it with force. Transfer squeezed cheese to a separate large mixing bowl and combine with 1.5 ounces sugar, vanilla extract, instant pudding mix, lemon zest and egg yolks. Vigorously mix with a rubber spatula until integrated. Set aside.
In a medium mixing bowl combine heavy whipping cream and 1.5 ounces sugar. Mix 1-2 minutes on high with a blender.
In another medium mixing bowl combine egg whites, salt and remaining sugar. Mix 1-2 minutes on high with blender until soft peaks form. Combine with whipping cream and continue mixing on high for another 2-3 minutes. Remove mixer, then add cheese filling to the bowl and mix with rubber spatula until completely integrated. Set aside.
(Combining) Take the crust out of the fridge and let rest for 10 minutes. Dust working area. Heat oven to 330°F (165°C).
Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a circle with about a 16-inch diameter. Carefully lift the dough and transfer into a 10-inch cake pan using the extra dough on the sides to make the cake edge by pressing it into the sides of the cake pan.
Transfer filling into the cake pan over dough, and even out with a spatula. Decorate top with apricots and place in oven. Bake for 50-60 minutes, turning the pan 90 degrees halfway. If it starts to brown at that point, cover with foil and add a few more minutes to baking. Alternatively, lower temperature to 315°F (160°C).
Turn the oven off, open it, and leave the cheesecake to cool down for 30 minutes in it. Take out and dust with confectioner's sugar. Transfer to fridge to cool for 3 hours before consumption.