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Amaretti and Coffee Cheesecake

The 2021 Great British Bake Off winner shares a tantalizing coffee cheesecake recipe from his first cookbook, Giuseppe’s Easy Bakes.

Amaretti Coffee Cheesecake

Amaretti Coffee Cheesecake from the cookbook Giueseppe’s Easy Bakes. Photo: Matt Russell

In 2021, Giuseppe Dell'Anno became the first Italian to win the popular competition show, The Great British Bake Off. An engineer by trade, his baking recipes have proved popular not just on TV but in newspapers and in his recently released cookbook, Giuseppe's Easy Bakes—Sweet Italian Treats. This no-bake recipe for amaretti and coffee cheesecake is excerpted with permission from the book.

Although cheesecakes do not belong to the classic Italian baking register, they are so popular that they have found their way into pretty much every family recipe book. An ideal cake for beginners, this amaretti and coffee cheesecake recipe requires no baking and combines two of my favourite flavours; coffee liqueur and amaretti provide a pleasantly bitter flavour, so the overall result is not overly sweet. For a non-alcoholic version, you can swap the Kahlúa for strong coffee. Mascarpone gives the cream an unbeatable velvety texture, and the ricotta keeps it lighter and surprisingly smooth. I like to fold whipped cream into my cheesecake as this opens up the otherwise dense structure. Despite its rather simple looks, this cake is bound to trigger many thumbs-up around the table and leave your guests asking for more.

Amaretti and Coffee Cheesecake

Amaretti and Coffee Cheesecake

Recipe by Giuseppe Dell'Anno
0.0 from 0 votes
Servings

12

servings
Prep time

1

hour 
Cooking time

0

minutes

Ingredients

  • For the base
  • ½ cup (90g) unsalted butter

  • 7 oz. 7 (200g) amaretti biscuits

  • 1/8 tsp. 1/8 salt

  • For the cream
  • 4 4 platinum-grade gelatine sheets (about 1/6oz/8g) or 1/2 oz (16g) standard powdered gelatine

  • 4 tsp 4 instant coffee granules

  • ½ cup (100g) hot water

  • 1 cup 1 (250g) mascarpone, at room temperature

  • 1/2 cup 1/2 (120g) ricotta, drained and at room temperature

  • ¾ cup (100g) icing (confectioner’s) sugar

  • 1 tsp 1 vanilla bean paste

  • 3 tbsp. 3 (40g) Kahlúa coffee liqueur

  • 3/4 cup 3/4 plus 1 tbsp (200g) whipping (heavy) cream (35–40% fat), cold

  • 12 12 amaretti, to decorate

Directions

  • Line the base of the tin with baking paper. Place the gelatine sheets in a small bowl and cover them with cold water; leave to soak for about 10 minutes.
  • Put the butter in a small microwave-safe bowl and melt it in the microwave: 30–40 seconds should be enough. Set aside to cool.
  • Put the amaretti and salt in the bowl of a food processor and blitz until they resemble sand. Transfer to a medium bowl and add the melted butter. Mix to moisten the crushed amaretti fully, then tip the mixture into the lined tin. Press it down firmly using the back of a spoon or the bottom of a cup. Put in the fridge to set.
  • Dissolve the coffee in the hot water, drain the soaked gelatine and dissolve the sheets in the hot coffee by whisking energetically for a few seconds. Set aside to cool.
  • Put the mascarpone, ricotta, sugar and vanilla in a bowl large enough to accommodate all the ingredients, then whisk by hand or with a handheld electric whisk until smooth and homogeneous. Add the cooled coffee mixture and the coffee liqueur and whisk again until well combined.
  • Put the whipping cream in another bowl and whisk until it forms soft peaks. Do not overbeat or it will curdle: stop as soon as the surface changes from shiny to dull. Use a silicone spatula to gently fold the cream into the mascarpone-coffee mixture in three batches.
  • Pour or spoon the mixture over the biscuit base, level it off with the back of a spoon or, better, with a small offset spatula, then chill in the fridge for at least 5 hours or overnight.
  • When ready to serve, loosen the sides of the cheesecake with a small knife, remove the ring of the tin and transfer the cake to a serving plate. Decorate the top with amaretti. Cheesecake caffè e amaretti keeps for up to 3 days in the fridge.

Notes

  • Serves up to 12 for a 9 inch (23g) springform cake tin

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Excerpted with permission from Giuseppe’s Easy Bakes by Giuseppe Dell’Anno published by ‎Hardie Grant Publishing, November 2023, RRP $32.50 Hardcover.

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