This is the perfect treat for your mom on Mother’s Day: a delicious and stunning-looking Raspberry Ombre Cheesecake Charlotte.
For the sponge cake:
2 medium eggs, separated
a pinch of salt
3 tbsp. sugar, divided
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
1.8 oz. (50g) all-purpose flour
For the fruit layer/filling:
17.6 oz. (500g) frozen raspberries, thawed
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. lemon juice
0.5 oz (15g) agar-agar
For the filling:
14 oz. (400g) cold heavy cream
9 tsp. cream stiffener, divided
17.6 oz. (500g) low-fat quark (curd)
1/4 cup (30g) confectioners’ sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
zest of 1 organic lemon
1 tbsp. lemon juice
For the decoration:
7 oz. (200g) ladyfingers
3.5 oz. (100g) white chocolate
1–2 tsp. coconut oil
food coloring for chocolate (pink)**
some whipped cream (optional)
fresh raspberries (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Line an 8 inch (20cm) springform tin with baking parchment and set aside. Thaw the raspberries.
2. Separate the eggs. Whisk the egg whites with a pinch of salt. Once the egg whites are foamy, gradually add 2 tablespoons of the sugar and whisk until stiff peaks form. Set aside. In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the remaining tablespoon of sugar and vanilla extract for 3-4 minutes until very light and fluffy. Sift the flour in two batches over the mix and gently fold in. Add the stiff egg whites, also in two batches, and gently fold in. Pour the batter into the prepared springform tin, smooth out the top and bake for about 14-15 minutes. The sponge should have risen nicely and got a nice golden brown color. Remove from the oven and let cool down completely.
3. For the fruit layer/filling, add the thawed raspberries to a small saucepan and puree with an immersion blender. If you don’t like the seeds, you’ll need a few more raspberries and you’ll have to strain the raspberry puree after pureeing. Add the sugar, lemon juice, and agar-agar and stir in. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, and let bubble for at least 2 minutes (otherwise the agar-agar won’t bind). Remove from heat and let cool until almost room temperature, stirring once in a while.
4. Whisk the cold heavy cream with 4 teaspoons of the cream stiffener until stiff peaks form. Set aside. In a large bowl, mix the quark with the remaining 5 teaspoons of the cream stiffener, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, lemon zest, and lemon juice until well combined. Gently fold in the whipped cream in several batches until well combined.
5. Remove the sponge cake from the tin and place it on a serving plate. Level the top if there are any bumps or if the cake has collapsed a bit. Place a cake ring tightly around the cake, then spread about 1/3 of the cream filling on top. Place in the fridge until needed again. Add about 1-2 tablespoons of the pureed raspberries to a bowl and mix with 1 tablespoon of the cream filling – this will make sure that everything has the same temperature and you avoid that the agar-agar is cooling down too quickly which would lead to clumps in the filling. Gradually add more cream and mix gently until another 1/3 of the cream has been incorporated. This mixture should have a light pink color. You can intensify the color by mixing some more raspberry puree in a separate bowl with some of the already colored cream filling, and then combining that again with the rest to intensify the pink. Take the cake out of the fridge and carefully spread the pink cream on top of the light cream layer and smooth it out. Put it back in the fridge. Color the remaining cream filling the same way but with a bit more raspberry puree than you did for the second layer – the cream should be a tad darker now. Make sure there is enough raspberry puree left for the fruit layer at the end. Carefully spread the cream again on top of the previous layer and smooth out – place in the fridge for about 20 minutes.
6. Take the cake out of the fridge and pour the remaining raspberry puree on top. If the puree has already thickened or is partially solid, simply warm it up again very briefly until the puree softens again. Place in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight.
7. To decorate the charlotte cut off the tips of the ladyfingers on one side so they can sit flush on the serving plate. Remove the cake ring around the cake and place the ladyfingers close to each other around the cake. You may need to trim the ladyfingers a bit more so they sit really close to each other.
8. Chop the white chocolate and gently melt it with about 1 tsp. of the coconut oil. Add the food coloring (sparingly) and color the chocolate pink. The chocolate sauce should flow nicely if you want a “drip effect”, so you may need to add some more coconut oil until the consistency is right. Remove ladyfingers – one at a time – from the charlotte, dip them into the pink chocolate sauce, and return them to their position on the side of the cake. If the chocolate doesn’t drip down on its own, you can drizzle some additional chocolate sauce on top of the ladyfingers. When all ladyfingers are dipped in chocolate and back in their place the charlotte should hold its shape without any problems. If you want to be super safe or have to transport the charlotte, I recommend placing a ribbon around it, which will hold everything together. If you like, you can decorate the charlotte with some whipped cream and fresh raspberries as well (optional).
**If you don’t have food color for chocolate specifically, you can use regular food color too. All you have to do is mix it with 1/2 tsp. of heavy cream and then add that to the chocolate and coconut oil when melting it.
Keywords: raspberry, ombre, Charlotte, cheesecake, Mother's Day