Blood Orange Curd Swirl Cheesecake with Creamsicle Cookie Crust
Whatever is easier for you.
Finished my word count. Went to take the trash out in a tank top. Met a neighbor and had a five-minute conversation without getting cold. February is scaring me. Hold me?
Ate leftover rabbit, stayed off my feet still recovering from two nights ago where I spent an evening in four-inch heels, snuggled the dogs, made sourdough bread, changed the sheets. I love that smell.
Drank iced coffee out of a martini glass. Felt classy about it. Dinner plans with my favorite fell through.
So I made this.
First, the creamsicle cookies:
No wait first – take 5 large eggs, 2 sticks of butter, two packages of cream cheese, and 1/2 cup crema (or sour cream) out of your fridge to temper. Cut 1/2 stick of butter into chunks and set aside. Preheat the oven to 325.
Ok, now the cookies:
4 ounces butter, softened
2 oz powdered sugar
2 oz granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 ounce milk (you could probably get away with orange juice here)
1 zest of one (blood) orange
7 ounces all-purpose flour
heavy pinch of salt
Cream the butter, sugars, vanilla, and orange zest together until light and smooth. Meanwhile, mix flours and salt. Add ounce of milk and beat until incorporated. Fold in flour mixture. Turn onto plastic wrap, roll into a log, and place in fridge for 1/2 hour.
Meanwhile, make the blood orange curd:
1/4 cup sugar
zest of two blood oranges
juice of two blood oranges – you could use regular oranges, but aren’t these pretty?)
juice of half a lemon
1/2 stick butter, cubed
large pinch of salt
Whisk egg and sugar together in large saucepan until combined. Add zest and juice, and turn on heat to medium. Whisk constantly, occasionally adding butter, chunk by chunk, adding each piece as the last one disappears. Continue to whisk until the mixture has thickened and large bubbles break in the center. Take immediately off heat. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl. Add salt and stir. Cover the top with plastic wrap, pressing down so the plastic wrap comes into full contact with the surface of the curd. Put in fridge until cool.
Cut cookies into 1/2″ slices, and bake on a parchment lined sheet tray for 15-20 minutes, until the edges are golden brown. Allow to cool. You can freeze the other half and bake them off whenever, or you could have an extra dozen cookies around. Either way.
Cookie Crust –
1 dozen of the creamsicle cookies
2 tablespoons of sugar
2 -3 tablespoons of melted butter
When cool, pulse one dozen of the cookies to crumbs in a food processor. Add the sugar and 2 tablespoons melted butter and stir to combine. (I happened to have some orange sugar around, so I used that to make the crust prettier.) If it’s not coming together, meaning you can’t pinch it into clumps, add the extra tablespoon of butter. Fill a muffin tin with liners. Add about 1 tablespoon of crust mixture to each muffin liner. Press down firmly.
Bake for 5 minutes to set crust.
Prep for cheesecake –
2 8-ounce packages of cream cheese
1/2 cup crema (or sour cream)
2/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt
Beat cream cheese, crema, and sugar together until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each one. Add tsp of vanilla and pinch of salt. Stir.
Bump oven temp to 350.
Fill the muffin tin about halfway to the top with cream cheese mixture. Add a healthy dollop of curd. Fill to almost the top with cream cheese mixture. Add another dollop of curd. Swirl with a knife, being careful not to go all the way to the bottom, to avoid stirring up cookie crumbs.
Bake for 15-25 minutes, until the cheesecake has puffed and the center no longer jiggles. Be warned, these will sink. It’s ok. It’s the nature of egg to souffle, then deflate. Chill for 1-2 hours in the fridge. serve cold, with an additional dollop of curd if you like (there should be some leftover).