I haven’t made a real dessert for ages, so I have been really looking forward to making a cake for my husband’s birthday, which is today.
Cheesecake is one of our favourite desserts but being on the Mediterranean Diet, for a few months now, I didn’t want to make something loaded with calories and unfortunately cheesecake is one of them.
I decided to recreate an older cheesecake I made in the early stages of blogging by reducing the calories significantly. I calculated the calories based on the ingredients used in the above cheesecake. I had used an 8″ (20 cm) baking tin and divided it into 12 pieces and was shocked to find that each piece had about 500 calories? That’s almost as many calories as a regular meal!!!!
Here is what I did to make it healthier and less fattening. First of all I substituted the fatty ingredients with low fat products: Digestive light biscuits, Philadelphia light cream cheese, anthotyro which in any case is a Greek low fat cheese, similar to ricotta and yoghurt with no fat at all. Instead of regular chocolate, I used dark chocolate with 70% cocoa, which is much healthier; in fact this chocolate in Greek is called Health Chocolate. Instead of butter I used tahini with honey and a little bit of margarine and finally I used less eggs to bind the cream.
I used a cup of the apricot spoon sweet I made last week and that is the only sweetener I added in the cake, plus the one used to make the jelly and decorate the cake on top.
I estimated that this cake, using an 11″ baking tin and again dividing the cake into 12 pieces (see how big the piece is in the picture) gave around 300 calories. However, I had to estimate the calories on apricot jam instead of spoon sweet and ricotta cheese instead of anthotyro. I am not 100% sure if my calculations are accurate but nonetheless, at least the ingredients used are much healthier than the original recipe.
I hope that this event I have created to honour Rosie, will inspire some other people to think about their health as well and make wise decisions on what to eat and what not to eat.
What Is Coronary Artery Disease?
Coronary artery disease (CAD), also called coronary heart disease, is a condition in which plaque (plak) builds up inside the coronary arteries. These arteries supply your heart muscle with oxygen-rich blood.
Plaque is made up of fat, cholesterol (ko-LES-ter-ol), calcium, and other substances found in the blood. When plaque builds up in the arteries, the condition is called atherosclerosis (ATH-er-o-skler-O-sis).
What Causes a Heart Attack?
Most heart attacks occur as a result of coronary artery disease (CAD). CAD is the buildup over time of a material called plaque on the inner walls of the coronary arteries. Eventually, a section of plaque can break open, causing a blood clot to form at the site. A heart attack occurs if the clot becomes large enough to cut off most or all of the blood flow through the artery.
National Heart, Lung & Blood Institute
I must tell you that this cheesecake tasted wonderful. If you like tahini, believe me the crust had a wonderful taste and the cheesecake itself was even better. First of all you can’t even believe that all the ingredients used are low fat.
I was a little bit worried if the cake would set as I used yoghurt and less eggs and I was also worried if the jelly topping would turn out to be too sweet, but it was absolutely perfect.
The only thing that I would change if I made it again, would be to use a smaller baking tin to make it higher but unfortunately, the only spring form tin I now have is an 11″ (28 cm) one.
I met Rosie in the early states of Blogging and her blog was then called Baking a Peace of Cake. She was a caring person, always left kind comments at my posts, we exchanged Awards of friendship and participated in most of the events I created and I also participated in a few she hosted as well, so as years passed we became quite close. She was a very caring and loving person.
Lately, she had some problems leaving a comment and that had something to do with the Internet Explorer she used. Instead she would send me an e-mail. Here is the last one she sent me:
“ Hello Ivy,
I just wanted to send you a quick email to let you know I’ve been trying to comment on your blog but my web browser Internet Explorer will not open up your page fully and keeps putting a box up with a red x which says operation aborted. I do know this was happening on my blog last week and found out it was the follwers widget playing up in the end.
I didn’t want you to think I’d forgotten you!!
Best wishes Rosie x ”
During this exchange of e-mails we also talked about some personal things, especially relating to health.
Goodbye my friend, I will miss you.
Apricot Cheesecake, recipe by Ivy
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: about 1 hour
- 1 packet Digestive biscuits crumbs (I used the low fat biscuits)
- 2 tablespoons tahini with honey
- 1 tablespoon margarine
- ½ cup ground, blanched and roasted almonds
- 400 grams low fat cream cheese (I used Philadelphia 12%)
- 200 grams Greek anthotyro cheese (may be substituted with ricotta or cottage cheese)
- 170 ml Greek yoghurt (0%)
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 95 grams dark chocolate (70% cacao), melted
- 1 cup apricot spoon sweet (with a little syrup)
- 20 pieces of apricot spoon sweet halves
- 400 ml apricot spoon sweet with syrup
- 150 ml water
- 6 gelatine sheets
- Preheat oven to 180o C. Blanche almonds and roast until they have a light beige colour. Allow to cool.
- Melt chocolate in a double boiler and set aside to cool.
- Put the almonds in the food processor and powder. Add half biscuits, or as many as can fit in the food processor and powder. Add remaining biscuits and tahini and mix together. Empty in the baking tin, add the margarine and mix to combine. Press into the bottom of the pan and set aside.
In the same food processor (no need to wash) add apricot spoon sweet and mix to puree. Add anthotyro cheese and mix.
- In mixer bowl beat the eggs, add the cream cheese and yoghurt and beat until fluffy. Add the apricot mixture, vanilla and mix to combine.
- Pour the cream cheese mixture evenly over prepared crust reserving about 4 heaped tablespoons, which mix with the melted chocolate.
Fill a pastry bag with this mixture and make small balls in the other cream mixture.
- Preheat oven at 180 degrees C. Wrap the cake pan with aluminium foil and bake in a water bath for about 45 – 60 minutes or until it sets.
- While cooling prepare the jelly.
- Place gelatine leaves in a bowl with water for 2 – 3 minutes to soften.
- Place the apricot spoon sweet with syrup in a food processor and puree.
- Heat the water and add the gelatin leaves. Mix until it dissolves. Place Apricots and gelatin in a bowl, mix and set aside to cool.
- Using a spoon, carefully add the jelly on top of the cheesecake and decorate with the apricot halves.
- Place into the refrigerator until it sets.
Please my friends, change you cooking habits and enjoy food, eating healthier but still even if you can’t change your habits, I believe that we can enjoy all things good, if we practice moderation.
Kopiaste and Kali Orexi!!