Personally, I’ve had mixed feelings about the warmer weather. While I’m thoroughly enjoying the fact that I can finally wear all those cute summery tops, dresses and shorts I bought a few weeks ago, and the fact that the Rocking Rebel insists on wearing no shirt (!), I also haven’t been able to do anything in this heat. Well, besides reading gossip magazines, eating watermelon pops and joining the Rocking Rebel and Lucy for lazy picnics on our granite kitchen floor. You see, we don’t have air conditioning and we live in a tiny apartment, on the top floor. In other words, it gets kind of hot in our place!
Luckily, my mom brought us a desk fan when she and my little sister came over the other day. Lucy especially loooooves it!
But enough about the heat. I’m sure you all remember my ‘Battle of the Buttercreams 2.0’ series, so let’s talk buttercream. Wait, no. It was waaay to hot for buttercream! Honestly, I didn’t even try to make it. I’m sure that if I had dared to take the butter out of the fridge for even five minutes, it would have just melted into a sad little puddle. So no new buttercream post for you today. Instead, I’ve made some cute, summery treats: individual no-bake lemon cheesecakes. Refreshing, yet indulging. Tangy and sweet and crazy delicious!
And easy too, because no one likes to slave in the kitchen on a hot day.
These cute little individual cheesecakes are super duper easy. Seriously, I whipped these up in about fifteen minutes. Sure, they’ll need a little time in the fridge to set, but if you make these in the morning (when the heat hasn’t caused you to crawl under your bed yet), and place them in the fridge, they’re ready by the time you’ll want dessert!
Here’s how I made them…
First, I made the crusts. Now, if you’re familiar with no-bake cheesecakes (which I’m sure you are, since you’re probably a foodie) I know what you’re thinking right now: bu-duuuh! I know, I know, I’m pointing out the obvious, but it’s an important step, right? Anyway, start with the crust, which is just a simple mix of cookie crumbs and melted butter (again: bu-duuuh!). Divide the crust mixture evenly over four to six pretty glasses (depending on their size) and place the crusts in the fridge to set a bit.
The glasses I used were huge, by the way. Like, 300mls – 2¼ cup! – kind of huge… I actually had difficulty finishing mine all by myself, so you can easily use smaller serving cups if you have them and make eight smaller cheesecakes.
Grab your electric mixer – I used a hand mixer – fit it with a whisk attachment and beat cream until it holds stiff peaks. Put the cream aside for a minute and, using the same mixer, no need to wash the beaters first, beat cream cheese, lemon zest, lemon juice, vanilla extract, sugar and a little salt together until fluffy and well combined. Fold in the cream with a rubber spatula and that’s it!
Spoon the lemon filling into the prepared serving glasses, cover tightly with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least three hours to set.
Wasn’t that easy? And fast? You didn’t even have to wash the beaters! Oh, and about that, if you don’t have an electric mixer, you can also use a whisk to beat the cream to peaks and a simple spoon to mix the cream cheese with the remaining ingredients. It just means you’ll have to work a bit harder and, well, um I like being lazy. Especially when it’s hot!
Once the cheesecakes have set and you’re ready to serve, wash, dry and hull some gorgeous strawberries, cut into quarters and place on top. Or, if you want to take lazy to the next level, just add a spoonful of your favorite jam. I bet raspberry jam is awesome on these!
- 120g (or 4 to 4.5 ounces) buttery, crumbly cookies of choice, or graham crackers
- 42g (or 3 tablespoons) unsalted butter
- 200ml (or ¾ cup + 4 teaspoons) heavy whipping cream
- 300g (or 10.5 ounces) cream cheese, softened at room temperature
- 130g (or ½ cup + 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon) granulated sugar
- Zest of 1 large lemon
- 2½ teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of table salt
- Fresh fruit for serving
- In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Place the cookies in a large zip-lock bag, squeeze out the excess air and gently smash the cookies with a rolling pin until you have fine crumbs. Add the crumbs to the butter and stir with a spoon until well combined.
- Divide the crust mixture evenly over 4 to 6 serving glasses, using a small spoon or your (clean) fingers to level the crumbs and firmly press them into the bottom of the glasses.
- Place in the fridge to set for about 10 minutes.
- In a small bowl, using an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat cream until it holds stiff peaks. Set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl, using the same electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (no need to clean it first!), mix together cream cheese, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, vanilla extract and salt until fluffy and well combined, about 2 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula and mix for another 30 seconds.
- Using a rubber spatula, gently fold one third of the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. Add the remaining cream and gently fold until combined.
- Spoon the cheesecake mixture into the prepared serving glasses, then cover the glasses with plastic wrap and place the cheesecakes in the fridge to set for at least 3 hours.
- Just before serving, top with fresh fruit.
- These no-bake cheesecakes can be made up to three days ahead. Keep them in the fridge until ready to serve, tightly covered with plastic wrap. Add the fruit right before serving.