Catherine Fulvio's Baked Irish Coffee Cheese Cake with Cherry Sauce.

Ingredients

Makes: 1 x 23cm 

For the base

  • 300g digestive biscuits
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • 150g butter, melted

For the filling 

  • 300g soft cream cheese 
  • 100g crème fraiche
  • 50g soft dark brown sugar
  • 3 eggs 
  • 3 tbsp espresso coffee
  • 3 tbsp Irish whiskey

For the cherry sauce

  • 1 tbsp arrowroot
  • 4 tbsp water
  • 350g jar pitted morello cherries (retaining juice too)
  • 3 tsp caster sugar
  • 2 star anise

To finish

  • 150g cherries with stems attached, to decorate
  • Small sprigs of lemon balm or mint, to decorate

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C/fan 150°C/gas 3. To prepare the tin, generously brush a 26cm loose base tart tin with melted butter.    
  2. To make the base, place the biscuits in a food processor and crush until fine crumbs form. 
  3. Transfer the biscuit crumbs to a bowl, add the ginger then pour over the melted butter and mix thoroughly until the crumbs are completely coated. 
  4.  
  5. Tip them into the prepared tin and press firmly down into the base and up the sides. Set in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  6. To make the filling, mix the cream cheese, crème fraiche, dark brown sugar, eggs, es-presso coffee and whiskey together in a large jug.
  7. Pour the mixture into the biscuit base and smooth evenly. Place in the oven to bake for about 30 to 35 minutes or until just set.
  8. Carefully remove from the oven and cool completely before removing from the tin.
  9. For the cherry sauce, drain the cherries (reserving the juice) and mix the arrowroot and the water together in a small bowl.
  10. Add the reserved juice, sugar, arrowroot mix and star anise in a saucepan over medium heat for 5 minutes or until the mixture boils and thickens. Stir in the cherries and set aside to cool slightly. Remove the star anise before serving.
  11. To decorate, arrange the cherries with stems attached as well as some sprigs of lemon balm or mint in a quarter moon shape on the one side and serve with the cherry sauce.