Not one to hold back when given clear instructions, Fidget was giving 150% when tasked to pulverise the biscuit to sprinkle on this sensational cake – another foolproof recipe from Stefano Caffarri (Il Cucchiaio d’Argento).
Streusel cheesecake with chocolate / Torta stracciatella ricotta e cioccolato
To create the base for this yummy cheesecake you will need: 300g flour, 100g granulated sugar, 100g butter, 1 egg, a pinch of salt and 1 sachet of lievito vanigliato*. For the filling you will need 400g ricotta cheese, 1 egg, 100g sugar and 100g dark chocolate (75% cocoa is Fidget’s favourite).
Base: start by mixing flour, butter, sugar, egg, raising agent and salt. You will get a very crumbly dough. Set aside part of it (about the size of a satsuma) to create a biscuit, which you will then crumble over the cake before serving. Use the rest of the dough to cover the base and sides of a lined baking tin. Don’t worry if the pastry tears, just use your fingers to press it in and all will be resolved in the cooking.
Filling: whisk egg, sugar and ricotta; then add the chopped dark chocolate (your choice whether you prefer it finely chopped or – like Fidget – a bit rustic and chunky). Combine well and fill your case with the mixture.
Take your reserved dough ball, flatten it to resemble a large cookie and place on a baking tray.
Bake both the cake and the biscuit in a pre-heated oven at 180°/gas 4 for 45min. When cooked (sides golden, the filling solid though slightly wobbly) take out of the oven and let cool. To serve, crush the biscuit to rough crumbles, sprinkle over the cake and give it a final dusting of icing sugar.
Fidget’s good work certainly paid off.
* Available everywhere in Italy, this is vanilla-flavoured raising agent; if you can’t find it, replace with 1tsp baking powder and a few drops of vanilla essence.