Brûlée vanilla cheesecake

    Calories per serving 160

    Serves 8
    Preparation time 30 minutes,
    plus cooling and chilling
    Cooking time 30-35 minutes


     butter, for greasing
     3×200 g(7 oz) packets low-fat
     cream cheese
     6 Tbs granulated sweetener
     1½ tsp vanilla extract
     finely grated rind of ½ orange
     4 eggs, separated
     1 Tbs icing sugar, sifted
     3 oranges, peeled and cut
     into segments, to serve

  • Lightly grease a 20 cm (8 inch) springform tin. 
  • Mix together the cream cheese, sweetener, vanilla extract, orange rind and egg yolks in a bowl until smooth.
  • Whisk the egg whites in a clean large bowl until soft peaks form, then fold a large spoonful into the cheese mixture to loosen it. 
  • Add the remaining egg whites and fold them in gently.
  • Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and level the surface. 
  • Bake in a preheated oven, 160°C (325°F), Gas Mark 3, for 30-35 minutes until well risen, golden brown and just set in the centre. 
  • Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake to cool for 15 minutes with the door slightly ajar. 
  • Remove from the oven, leave to cool, then chill for 4 hours. 
  • (The cheesecake will sink slightly as it cools).
  • Run a knife around the cheesecake, loosen the tin and transfer to a serving plate. 
  • Dust the top with the icing sugar and caramelize the sugar with a cook’s blowtorch. 
  • Serve within 30 minutes, while the sugar topping is still hard and brittle. 
  • Cut into 8 wedges and arrange on plates with the orange segments.
  • For lemon drizzle cheesecake, make the cheesecake as above, using  the finely grated rind of 1 lemon in place of the orange rind. 
  • When the cheesecake has been chilled and removed  from the tin, mix 3 Tbs sifted icing sugar with enough juice squeezed from the lemon to give a runny syrup. 
  • Spoon over  the cheesecake and sprinkle with the grated rind of another lemon.