My sister decided to host an ugly sweater party for her birthday, which happens to fall on Twelfth Night (the 12th day of Christmas, Epiphany, Dia de los Reys, etc.). I feel a little funny posting a holiday blog several weeks after the holidays, but life got in the way, and I am just now getting around to sharing it with you.
My sister works in the wedding industry, and specifically requested a non-cake birthday cake. Apparently, it is possible to get caked-out. Hence my choice for baking a cheesecake. She also requested lime flavoring, and in the spirit of the ugly sweater party I covered my cheesecake in a lime mousse holiday wreath.
- 1 1/2 cup Graham Cracker Crumbs
- 4 tbsp melted Butter
- 1/4 cup Brown Sugar
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 3 (8 oz) packages of Cream Cheese
- 1 cup Sour Cream
- 1 tsp Lime Extract (or 1 tsp Lime juice and 1 tsp Vanilla Extract)
- 3 Eggs
- 3 tbsp Flour
- zest from 1 Lime
- Preheat the oven to 325 F (~163 C).
- Make the crust:
- Combine the graham crackers and brown sugar in a food processor.
- Gradually pour in the melted butter, while pulsing, until the dough begins to clump together.
- Lightly press the graham cracker dough into the bottom of a springform baking pan.
- Bake the crust for 15 minutes, before removing it from the oven and setting it aside to cool.
- Make the cheesecake filling:
- Beat together the sugar, flour, salt, and cream cheese until fluffy.
- Beat in the lime extract and zest.
- Gradually beat in the sour cream.
- Beat in the eggs 1 at a time.
- Your filling should be smooth and lump free.
- Pour the filling onto your graham cracker crust.
- Bake your cheese cake for an hour. You may want to add a tray with some water in it to create a steam bath to help prevent cracking.
- 3 Eggs separated + 1 whole Egg
- 1 (14 oz) can Sweetened Condensed Milk
- 1/3 cup Lime Juice
- 1/2 tsp Lime zest
- 2-4 drops Green Food Coloring
- 1 (0.25 oz) envelope of unflavored Gelatin
- Maraschino Cherries and Gold Sugar Sprinkles for decorating
- In a sauce pan combine the sweetened condensed milk, lime juice, lime zest, and food coloring.
- Bring these to a boil.
- Meanwhile, beat the 3 egg whites into firm peaks, and set them aside.
- Once the lime/milk concoction has started to boil, allow it to boil for a few minutes before removing it from the heat.
- Immediately stir in the gelatin.
- Gradually beat in the egg yokes and whole egg. Make sure that the liquid is cool enough to not curdle the eggs.
- Spoon a third of the egg whites into the yoke mixture and fold gently.
- Add another third of egg whites, and continue to gently fold.
- Fold in the final third of egg whites insuring that the mousse is as light as possible.
- Store the mousse in the refrigerator of a few hours until it has set.
- Using a piping bag fitted with a piping nozzle and no piping tip, pipe the mousse onto your cheesecake, layering it to form a large wreath.
- Decorate your wreath with maraschino cherries and gold sugar sprinkles.