Honey Rosewater Cheesecake with Pistachio Crust (Gluten Free)

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I love a good Cheesecake as much as the next person but this one really got to me. The hit of goat cheese (yes- goat cheese!)  in there gives a little tang that I was very into without taking over with goat cheese flavor. It also helped lightened up this Cheesecake. I know “light” and “Cheesecake” don’t really go together but I swear it worked in this situation.

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There’s only a touch of natural sweetness… to me this made the Cheesecake feel more homemade and not super sugary store bought. It also let the rosewater come through. Oh yea… we have Persian flavors in full force here with rosewater, honey and pistachios. Even though there’s a pistachio/Almond flour mix in the crust the pistachio really stands out.

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Also- the crust is gluten free and super easy. The whole Cheesecake is crazy easy actually. No water bath, no fancy steps… Just crust, filling, garnish. The garnishes are optional but I would recommend you don’t skip the honey… even if it’s just to individual slices based on personal preference. Like I said, there’s not much sweetness in the actual Cheesecake so that little drizzle on the end really brings this gem home.

Don’t stress out about cracks or what not, especially right out of the oven. Give it sometime in settle down in the fridge and it will be delicious. It really does need to sit overnight… it’s hard I know but worth the wait for this light, easy and Persian inspired Cheesecake.

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You’ll need:

For cheesecake

  • 16 ounces cream cheese (two bricks), at room temperature
  • 4 ounces goat cheese, at room temperature
  • 4.5 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2.5 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon rosewater
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 3 large eggs

For the crust

  • 0.75 cup pistachios
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1.5 tablespoons butter
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • 0.5 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg

For garnish (optional)

  • 0.25 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons dried rose petals
  • 2 tablespoons chopped pistachio*

*I used these really young green pistachios from Iran that are extra gorgeous but (as Ina would say) regular pistachios would do

To Make:

  1. Preheat oven to 356 degrees F (weird I know).  In a food processor, pulse pistachios the best you can until they are almost like flour.  Add the rest of the crust ingredients until a dough forms.
  2. Grease a spring-form pan and press dough into tin.  You can use the bottom of a measuring cup to make it smooth and even.  Prick all over with a fork so that air can escape (if you forget to do this… like I did… just prick it when it comes out of the oven).  Bake in oven for ten minutes.
  3. While crust cools, make cheesecake.  Beat cream cheese, goat cheese, maple syrup, honey and egg with an electric mixture until there are no lumps and the mixture is smooth.  Beat in lemon juice and rosewater.  Pour cheesecake batter onto cooled crust and spread evenly.  Bake in oven for 40-45 minutes (I pulled mine out at 42 minutes).  If it looks puffed up and maybe even cracking don’t stress to much it will look better after some time in the fridge.
  4. Place cheesecake in fridge and chill overnight.  This cake is not very sweet so garnish with honey accordingly (or drizzle honey on individual slices when serving).  Garnish with rose petals and pistachios.

Inspired by Georgeats

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