Vanilla cheesecake with red berry compote

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A slice of Pierre Koffmann's dreamy vanilla cheesecake will not be enough, so it's a good job this baked cheesecake recipe produces a whole cake for you to devour in your own time. A mixed berry compote cuts through the richness of the cake perfectly.

First published in 2015




Cheesecake mix

  • 880g of cream cheese
  • 4 vanilla pods, de-seeded
  • 210g of caster sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 eggs
  • 250g of double cream

Crumble mix

For the cake base

Mixed berry compote

To finish

  • 300g of crème fraîche
  • 1 vanilla pod, dried


  • Food mixer
  • 25cm pastry ring


Begin by preparing the cheesecake mix. Combine the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla in a mixer and mix on a medium speed until combined. Add the eggs, continue to mix on a medium speed, then switch to a low speed and add the cream, allowing it to combine slowly. Turn up to a high speed and mix until thickened for 1 minute
  • 880g of cream cheese
  • 4 vanilla pods, de-seeded
  • 210g of caster sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 eggs
  • 250g of double cream
Place a 22cm deep square mould, or a 25cm pastry ring if you'd like a circular cheesecake, onto a flat baking tray. Cover the base with cling film, then a layer of foil. Fill the tray with cheesecake mixture until it is just below the level of the mould
Preheat the oven to 90°C
Bake the cheesecake in the oven for 45 minutes until set until the cheesecake is set, baking for an additional 5–10 minutes if necessary. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature – it should still wobble slightly. Once cool, place in the fridge to set
Meanwhile, make the crumble mix. Combine all of the dry ingredients in a bowl, then dice the butter and rub into the dry ingredients. Once all of the butter is incorporated, spread out on a baking tray lined with baking paper
Preheat the oven to 140°C/gas mark 2
Bake the crumble in the oven for 15 minutes, or until golden brown and crunchy. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool
To prepare the base, break the crumble into little pieces and combine with the melted butter in a pan, tossing to combine. Spread this mixture between 2 pieces of baking paper and roll flat with a rolling pin to form a circular shape, 1 1/2cm wider than the diameter of the cheesecake mix
Place the base on a very flat tray, tightly wrap the tray in cling film and refrigerate until set
To assemble, remove the cheesecake and base from the fridge, carefully place the crumble base on top of the chilled cheesecake and place a tray on top. Invert so that the base is on the bottom, remove the tray, foil and the cling film from the base of the cheesecake (now the top) and trim the excess base of the crumb
Mix the créme fraîche in a bowl until it becomes runny, then spread evenly over the top of the cheesecake, ensuring the it only just reaches the top of the ring. Refrigerate to set for at least an hour
  • 300g of crème fraîche
To prepare the berry compote, add the sugar, red wine, cinnamon stick and sugar to a medium-sized pan and bring to the boil. Reduce by half, then reduce the temperature to a simmer. Add the fruit and simmer until soft and tender
Remove the fruit from the poaching liquid and reduce the liquid by half over a high heat. Once reduced, pour the remaining liquid back over the fruit and set aside until ready to plate
Remove the cheesecake from the fridge and gently blowtorch the ring holding the cheesecake in place, making sure you do not burn the topping. Carefully slide off the ring, maintaining the form and shape of the cheesecake
To plate, use a hot knife to slice the cheesecake into portions. Garnish with the mixed berry compote and a slither of dried vanilla pod
  • 1 vanilla pod, dried

Pierre Koffmann's cooking is undeniably refined; classical yet humble, with provincial French touches grounding the skilful elegance of the food. Taking inspiration from his Gascon roots, Pierre artfully extracts extraordinary flavour from ordinary ingredients and cuts.

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