I broke one of the rules of baking class. Our teacher, Chef Meyer, told us to always garnish desserts with something in the dessert, and not just a generic sprig of mint or zig-zag of chocolate. You can see the picture. You know what I did. I should’ve probably drizzled on some ginger syrup or garnished with candied lemon peel, but I kind of like it with chocolate.

Lemon Ricotta Cheesecake - 3

I used Mi-del ginger snaps in the crust. They’re Swedish style. All natural. A little chewy and extra gingery.

3 oz of ginger snaps (13-14 cookies if you’re using Mi-del)
3-4 T butter, melted
1/2 c walnuts
1 T sugar
a pinch of salt

16 oz (about 1 c) ricotta
16 oz cream cheese
1 lemon, zest + juice
1 vanilla bean, seeded (save the pod for some chai sun tea)
3 eggs
3/4 c sugar

Lemon Ricotta Cheesecake - 1

1. Preheat the oven to 350˚.
2. In a food processor, combine the ginger snaps, nuts, salt, sugar, and butter. Pulse until smooth. It should feel damp, but not wet. Add a few more cookies if too wet or a little butter if too dry.
3. Press into the bottom of a springform 9 in cake pan that you’ve buttered and/or covered with parchment.
4. Place onto a baking tray (to catch any butter that may seep out) and bake until browned slightly, about 10-15 min.
5. Let cool.
6. Clean out your food processor, and add in the ricotta, cream cheese, lemon, vanilla, eggs, and sugar. Pulse until smooth.
7. Pour on top of the cooled crust.
8. Bake at 325˚ on the lower rack in your oven with another sheet tray on top to insulate the cake and prevent the top from browning, about 45 min-1 hr. The cake should just barely jiggle in the middle. If it’s too loose, keep baking.
9. Once it is done, let cool and then refrigerate it overnight, or at least 10-12 hrs.
10. Garnish with something lemony, gingery, or chocolate…

Lemon Ricotta Cheesecake - 2