Rosie Makes: Cranachan Cheesecake

A wee twist on the classic Scottish pud to celebrate Burns Night.

Cranachan cheesecake

To the Immortal Memory of Robert Burns!

Today marks the birthday of Scotland’s Bard, Rabbie Burns. Scots all over the world celebrate the life and work of the national poet every year with a traditional Burns Supper, including haggis, neeps and tatties, as well as poetry and piping.  The traditional sweet is usually cranachan – a delicious creamy desert with honey, whisky, raspberries, crowdie and toasted oatmeal. After seeing Paul Hollywood’s take on cranachan cheesecake on his show Puds & Pies, I was inspired to create my own, but stuck to the traditional creamy base rather than an eggy one. I didn’t include the whisky but you can add this too, to your liking! I couldn’t resist sharing the recipe – it really couldn’t be simpler.

To make the cheesecake you will need:

Cranachan cheesecake

300 ml whipping cream (I used Elmlea)
150g crowdie or ricotta cheese (see below)
About 100g oatcakes
30g ground oatmeal, toasted (I ground up rolled oats in a food processor and then toasted them under the grill for approx five minutes)
2-3 tbsp honey for the base, plus extra for the cream (to your taste)
Enough butter to hold the base together
A few leftover raspberries for decoration
Pie tin, greased

Note: Crowdie is a soft cheese that tastes a bit like a salty ricotta. If you can’t get hold of it you could use ricotta or another cream cheese instead. Mine was by the Highland Fine Cheeses company from Sainsbury’s.

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

1)  First, make the base: crush the oatcakes either in a food processor or with the tried and tested bag-and-rolling-pin method. I prefer doing it this way so they don’t get too fine, which is easily done when using the processor.

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

2) Melt the butter and add to the ground oatcakes, along with the honey; I say 2 – 3 tablespoons as it depends on the sweetness of the honey you’re using. (I ought to have used some lovely heather honey but this was all I had to hand!)

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

Mix until it starts to come together and you have your lovely buttery biscuit base (couldn’t resist).

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

Press the mixture evenly into the base of your greased tin and pop in the fridge to firm up while you make the filling.

Cranachan cheesecake

3) To make the filling, first whip the cream.

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

A sneak peek of a very exciting new purchase above… but more on that soon. You want to keep going until the cream is softly whipped, but not too firm. This sort of consistency:

Cranachan cheesecake

4) Add the crowdie and honey to the cream and fold through until evenly distributed. You can add the honey to your taste – enough to counteract the saltiness of the crowdie, but not so that it becomes overly sweet.

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

It’s not the prettiest but boy does it taste good! Next, fold through the toasted oatmeal – this gives a lovely crunchy texture that makes cranachan so distinctive.

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

5) Add the creamy mixture to the set base, spreading it out to the edges until you have a nice even coverage. Pop in the fridge to set for a couple of hours.

Cranachan cheesecake

6) Meanwhile, make the raspberry coulis. You will need:

Approx 250g raspberries
Icing sugar to taste

Sadly Scottish raspberries aren’t in season (if only Rabbie knew), but this is even more delicious come summer time when you can use them!

Cranachan cheesecake

Purée the raspberries and icing sugar in the blender (depending on how sweet or otherwise your berries are!)

Cranachan cheesecake

Lovely, but very bitty! Pass the purée through a sieve to get rid of the pips. It couldn’t be easier and makes a really lovely accompaniment to the cheesecake.

Cranachan cheesecake

7) Once your cheesecake has firmed up in the fridge, decorate with some fresh raspberries. Serve with a generous drizzle of raspberry coulis.

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

So there you go: a simple wee twist on classic cranachan. Happy Burns Night all!

Cranachan cheesecake

Cranachan cheesecake

Do you celebrate Burns Night? What are you having for your Burns Supper?

Cranachan cheesecake

3 comments

  1. Domenico says:

    No Burns night in Italy, of course. So I made it last Sunday. It didn’t survive my nieces’ visit to my place. Hope Robert Burns will forgive them.

  2. […] eat, drink and be merry in the name of Burns Night. Last year I shared a recipe for a cracking cranachan cheesecake (if I do say so myself), and this year I thought it was the perfect excuse to make some […]

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