Mini Low FODMAP Lemon Cheesecakes

You may find this hard to believe however I had never tasted cheesecake until I was 20 years old. I grew up in Malta and cheesecake was never a dessert option on the menu. So I grew up never knowing what a cheesecake tasted like. Well not exactly…. as a cheesecake (or pastizz in Maltese) in Malta is a savory pastry filled with ricotta cheese or peas. At 20 years of age I moved to London and I went out to eat with a couple of classmates. When it was time for dessert they both ordered cheesecake. They raved about it so much that I ended up ordering cheesecake too and that is when my love for cheesecake begun. Unfortunately a year later my IBS symptoms and lactose intolerance struck meaning no more cheesecake for me…well that is if you don’t count the times when I had it anyways and suffered the consequences. But why should I suffer? So I decided to make my favourite cheesecake; lemon cheesecake…low FODMAP of course! It is delicious. Whilst this recipe is lactose free it is rich in fats therefore those of you who find fat is a trigger be mindful of this and if attempting the recipe have a small portion size. I made mini cheesecakes however my smallest tins where still quite big. I am considering buying mini dessert trays with push up bottoms to make even smaller ones, which will be more like cheesecake bites. Also remember to only have this as a treat once in a while.

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Ingredients: (for 7-8 mini cheesecakes)

For lemon curd topping:

  • juice of 1 lemon
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 100g margerine
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 2 egg yolks

For biscuit crust:

  • 12 gluten free digestive biscuits
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • 55g margerine

For the cheesecake:

  • 300g lactose free cream cheese
  • 50g lactose free plain yoghurt or more lactose free cream cheese
  • 185g caster sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 tbsps lemon juice
  • zest of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence or vanilla paste

Method:

For the lemon curd:

  1. Whisk the egg yolks with the caster sugar until white and creamy.
  2. Add the lemon juice and zest.
  3. Place in a bain-marie on low heat.
  4. Add the butter and whisk the mixture on the bain-marie for approximately 30 minutes until it thickens.
  5. Put aside to cool.

For the biscuit base:

  1. Crush the biscuits into crumbs.
  2. Combine the crushed biscuits, sugar and melted butter.
  3. Line the baking tins with baking paper. This will make removing the cheesecakes from the tins easier.
  4. Press the mixture in the bases and bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 5 minutes. You may reserve 1-2 tbsp of the mixture for decoration.
  5. Let the bases cool.

For the cheesecake:

  1. Whisk the cream cheese and yoghurt until smooth.
  2. Add the egg and whisk in well.
  3. Add the caster sugar gradually while whisking continuously.
  4. Add the lemon juice, zest and vanilla.
  5. Pour the mixture onto the baked bases.
  6. Bake in a preheated oven at 160C for approximately 15 minutes until the cheesecake is almost set and the middle has a slight wobble. Cooking time will vary depending on the diameter and thickness. You may need to cook less or longer. My tins were 5cm in diameter and 3cm high.
  7. Leave the cheesecake to cool and then chill in a refrigerator.
  8. Once chilled spread a layer of lemon curd on top.
  9. Remove from the baking tins.
  10. I decorated mine with some of the reserved crushed biscuit mixture, a piece of lemon and a mint leaf.
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