Lemon Meringue Cheesecake
For the cheesecake:
- 250g cream cheese, chopped and softened
- ¾ cup (180g) fresh ricotta
- 2 eggs
- 75g caster sugar
- ¼ cup (60ml) lemon juice
- 1 tbsp finely grated lemon rind
- ½ tsp cornflour
For the shortcrust pastry:
- 1½ cups (225g) Lighthouse Biscuit, Pastry & Cake Plain Flour
- ½ cup (80g) icing sugar, sifted
- 125g unsalted butter, chilled and chopped
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 tbsp iced water
For the meringue:
- ¼ cup (60ml) water, plus 1 tbsp extra
- ¼ tsp cream of tartar
- 1 cup (220g) caster (superfine) sugar
- 75ml eggwhites (approximately 2 eggs)
For the pastry, place the flour, icing sugar and butter in a food processor and process until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. With the motor running, add the egg yolks and iced water and process until the mixture just comes together to form a dough.
Turn out onto a clean work surface and bring together to form a ball. Roll out the dough between 2 sheets of non-stick baking paper to 3mm thick. Refrigerate the pastry for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 160°C. Line a lightly greased 30cm springform cake tin (or three 10cm springform cake tins), leaving 1cm excess pastry overhanging. Refrigerate for 20 minutes or until firm.
Prick the base of each pastry case with a fork and line with non-stick baking paper. Fill with pie weights or uncooked rice and cook for 18–20 minutes. Carefully remove the baking paper and weights and cook for a further 10–12 minutes or until the pastry is golden and dry. Set aside to cool slightly. Using a small serrated knife, trim the excess pastry.
To make the filling, place the cream cheese, ricotta, eggs, sugar, lemon juice and lemon rind in a food processor and process until smooth. Add the cornflour and mix to combine.
Reduce oven to 140°C. Pour the filling into the pastry cases and cook for 20–25 minutes or until just set. Remove and set aside to cool to room temperature before refrigerating for 30 minutes.
To make the meringue, place the water, cream of tartar and half the sugar in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to medium and cook for 4 minutes.
While the sugar syrup is cooking, place the eggwhites in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat until stiff peaks form. Add the remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until smooth and glossy.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Gradually pour the hot sugar syrup in a thin steady stream and beat for 4 minutes or until cool. Spoon the meringue over the cheesecakes and, using a kitchen blowtorch, lightly torch to serve.
Note: If you do not have a blowtorch, you can place the pie under the grill for 30 seconds or until lightly browned.