August 22, 2009

Eggless No-Bake Lemon Cheesecake

It was our wedding anniversary two days back and it seems unbelievable that so many years have gone by without my quite realizing it. I will not say it seems like we got married just yesterday because it doesn't. It certainly doesn't feel like its been sixteen years which suddenly seems like a very long time.

Akshaya is in the middle of her school term exams and a concert at her music school, I was getting ready for a trip out of Goa and that my husband was up to his ears with work. Fitting in a "celebration" into all this wasn't part of the plan, even though we always make all such days "special" in our own way.

As it turned out we had a memorable evening listening to Akshaya's school concert and an unexpected surprise from a friend in the form of dinner, cake, flowers and a musical serenade!

I'll be away from Goa for a week (not on holiday), and I've set this post to be auto-published. No celebration is complete without a sweet ending however small, so here's a no-bake cheesecake that I've made a few times before. This recipe is adapted from Tarla Dalal's Delicious Diabetic Recipes-Low Calorie Cooking and can be found on her website too.

While we are not very fond of tartness in our desserts, this particular cheesecake is a favourite. I use low-fat paneer (or creamcheese) and yogurt, both of which I make at home, and this becomes a very light dessert and the perfect way to end a meal.

You will notice two very different looking cheesecake photographs on this post. Both were taken a couple of years apart. The basic cheesecake is the same, its just the presentation that is different. One is of the cheesecake plain while the other is served with a blackberry compote.
Eggless No-Bake Lemon Cheesecake
(adapted from Tarla Dalal)


For the crust:

12 digestive biscuits (or cookies of your choice)

3 tsp butter, melted

For the cheesecake mixture:

1 1/2 cup crumbled paneer (or creamcheese)

1/2 cup thick yogurt

6 tsp caster sugar (adjust to preference)

1 1/2 tsp lemon juice

1 tsp grated lemon zest

2 drops lemon extract (optional)


First make the crust.
Crush the biscuits/ cookies to a powder. One easy way of doing this is to put the biscuits/ cookies in a Ziploc bag and close the bag after pressing most of the air out. Use your rolling pin and give the bag a few light whacks to break the biscuits/ cookies. Now roll your rolling pin, while pressing down on the bag, up and down the bag a few times to powder the biscuits/ cookies.

Combine the powdered biscuits and melted butter well. Press the mixture into a greased loose bottomed 6" cake/ tart tin. Otherwise use 4 greased ring moulds, like I did.
Refrigerate till set (about 15 to 30 minutes).

In the meanwhile make the cheesecake mixture.
Blend the creamcheese till smooth and free of lumps, adding very little warm milk if needed. Add all the remaining ingredients for the cheesecake mixture and whisk till well incorporated.
Pour this over the set biscuit/ cookie base. Gently smoothen the top and refrigerate to set (about 1 1/2 to 2 hours).

If you would like to top the cheesecake with a marmalade layer, melt 3 tbsp of lemon-orange marmalade (orange marmalade will do too) with 1 tbsp of water over gentle heat. Pour this over the cheesecake and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.  You can also serve it with a blueberry or blackberry fruit compote.
Serve chilled.
This recipe serves 4.


Pavithra said...

Wow thats really wonderful recipe u have shared... So easy and looks yummy too.. bookmarked it will try it out soon. Thanks fo sharing.

Divya Vikram said...

This looks too pretty and that it doesnt need to be baked.

Nithya said...

This one looks absolutely delicious.. :) yummmmm

sra said...

Happy anniversary!

That was nice of your friend to do that for you! And I hope Akshaya's concert went off well.

Jamie said...

What a lovely lovely dessert. I am not a cheesecake fan, but the way you describe it, it sounds perfect and so good! Love the fact that you made a lower fat version of something normally so heavy and decadent. Yum!

roma said...

Awesome plating! I liked the recipe as it doesnt use cream cheese. Thats one ingredient thats not easily available out here.

jayasri said...

happy anniversary dear, it looks deliciousy i will give this a try as my first daughter loves cheese cakes

♥♥♥Ria♥♥♥ said...

Happy Anniversary!! Hope you had a beautiful day! :)

That cheesecake is to die for! I am a BIG cheesecake fan!! And now that I have started gymming... this one would be perfect! :D

♥♥♥Ria♥♥♥ said...

Happy Anniversary!! Hope you had a beautiful day! :)

That cheesecake is to die for! I am a BIG cheesecake fan!! And now that I have started gymming... this one would be perfect! :D

Priya said...

Happy wedding anniversary Aparna, such a amazing cheesecake that too with lemon, excellent way to celebrate ur wed anniversary...

Avanika [YumsiliciousBakes] said...

Happy Anniversary!! The cheesecake looks delicious!! Cheesecake is high on the list of my favorite desserts :) :)

Is paneer a substitute for cream cheese, or is it just a step towards being healthier?

Vijitha Shyam said...

Hey da! how are u doing? been really long time since I visted your blog (or any other blog). been really busy, just married, moved to US & Life is crazily occupied.

Coming to ur post, its yummy & I loved the pic.

Priya Narasimhan said...

Happy Wedding Anniversary dear aparna..again a recipe to bookmark.....

Nags said...

my friend shared a strawberry version of this which am yet to try!

Raaga said...

many happy returns and belated wishes :)

The cheesecake looks yummy... I shall send your parcel to you next week for sure! You shall have it when you get to Goa.

I'm sure everything will go well back home :)

Aparna Prabhu said...

HEY Aparna....Happy wedding anniversary....our names being same our anniversary just has 2 days of difference mine is 22nd :).....i m new to baking....i wud love to bake this cake either for my next anniversary or soon but will keep visiting u everytime wud love to....:) Take care!!

Cynthia said...

this eggless cheesecake receipe looks delicious and easy to put together. thanks! :)

Curry Leaf said...

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY WSHES APARNA.Enjoy the break the cheesecake looks perfect as always.I am very scared of making cheesecakes.this being eggless is a must try.

Bharti said...

Happy Anniversary Aparna!

Aparna said...

Thank you for the anniversary wishes.

Sra, Akshaya's concert went very well.

It is yum, Jamie. :)

Good luck with the gymming, Ria. Its hard work!

Avanika, paneer is healthier than cream cheese provided its made with low fat milk.
Here it is a substitute because I don't get cream cheese here.

Good luck and best wishes with your new life, Vijitha.

Do try it Nags. Its worth it.

Raaga, looking forward to the parcel, and thanks. :)

Happy anniversary to you too. Hope you have a great day. :)

Nothing to be scread of here, Sweatha. And you cook and bake so much stuff. This doesn't even require baking. :)

The Purple Foodie said...

i'm going to try this since you attest to the recipe. Otherwise, I'd run miles away from anything that's Tarla Dalal.

Rohini Kamath said...

hi aparna,

You dont mention whats to be done with the yoghurt? blend with the cream cheese?

Aparna said...

Rohini, I've mentioned that all the other ingredients (including the yogurt) for the cheesecake mixture are to be whisked with the cream cheese.

Rohini Kamath said...

Oops sorry... i think i got so distracted by all the yummy ingredients and the pic... Sorry..

Anonymous said...

i want to try this recipe. just paneer same as cream cheese..i was lookingfr cream cheese (i live in melbourne) without gelatine but could not findal any. and now i see that yoj have used paneer instead of cream cheese. can that b done in all recipes calling for cc? thx

Aparna said...

Paneer is not the same as creamcheese. I used paneer and yogurt instead of creamcheese because I don't get it in the stores here. This won't work in all recipes for cheesecakes and you will have to change proportions or ingredients depending on the recipe. It should work for most no-bake cheesecakes.