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Brown Sugar Peach Cheesecake

From my book, "Making Artisan Cheesecake" Quarto 2015 this is my favorite summertime cheesecake. You can also substitute any fruit puree.

Makes 1 - 10 inch cheesecake

For the cheesecake:

3 pounds (1.3kg) ricotta

2 tablespoons (15g) flour

1 cup (225g) packed brown sugar

1 cup (235ml) buttermilk

1 cup (235ml) peach puree

5 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon (1.2g) cinnamon

1 tablespoon (14ml) peach brandy, optional

For the peaches:

4 ripe peaches, pitted, halved and cut into 1/4 inch slices

4 tablespoons (55g) unsalted butter

1/4 cup (50g) granulated or light brown sugar

1 tablespoon (14ml) peach brandy, optional

To make the cheesecake:

Heat oven to 325℉ (170℃) Gas Mark 3

In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, mix ricotta and flour on low speed until softened; scraping down the sides of the bowl, underneath the paddle, and the paddle frequently with a rubber spatula, about 2 minutes. Add in brown sugar and continue mixing on low and scraping down the sides, bottom, and paddle until there are no visible lumps. Add in buttermilk and mix just until combined. Add in peach puree and mix just until combined. Add in eggs, one at a time, and mix just until combined, about 10 seconds after each egg. Stir in peach puree, cinnamon, and peach brandy, if using.

Place the springform pan in a large cake pan or a roasting pan (around the same height or lower than your springform pan). Pour batter over the crust, and spread the batter with a small offset spatula to level the batter. Place in the oven and pour almost boiling water into the roasting pan (it should come up halfway around the sides of the pan). Bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes, until the cheesecake is firm around the edges but still jiggly in the center (about the size of a quarter). Remove from oven and remove cheesecake from the water bath. Remove the foil from the sides of the pan. Gently run a small sharp knife or small spatula around the edges of the pan to loosen the cheesecake from the sides. Allow to cool at room temperature. Place in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours (this will help the cheesecake set completely).

To unmold the cheesecake:

Gently run a small sharp knife or small spatula around the edges of the pan. Release the latch on the side of the pan and then lift the ring straight up.

To make the peaches:

In a large sauté pan, heat the butter and sugar over medium heat until the butter is melted and the sugar is beginning to dissolve. Add the peaches and toss to coat with the butter/sugar mixture. Cook 3-5 minutes, depending on the ripeness of the peaches, until slightly softened. Remove from heat and add brandy if using.


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