With just a few ingredients, this dessert ticks all the boxes. The combination of lite cream cheese and ricotta makes this cheesecake decadent, but not too “heavy”. I’ve used vanilla wine biscuits, which are not too sweet, but any similar biscuits will work just as well.
I would strongly recommend using a loose bottom cake tin, as all you need to do is remove the side of the tin to serve (it can be left on the pan bottom).
Had a little malfunction with the sides of the crust as I pressed it up to the top of the cake tin, which was higher than the cheesecake mixture, so when it cooled down before putting the meringue on, it crumbled, but it didn’t matter at all and actually made an interesting contrast between layers when it was cut and served.
The cheesecake can be made a day in advance and stored in the fridge until serving.
Baked Pineapple Meringue Cheesecake
(Serves 8 – 10)
330 grams vanilla wine biscuits (about 1½ packets)
120 grams butter (melted)
250 grams lite cream cheese
250 grams ricotta
⅔ cup caster sugar
3 eggs, plus 3 extra yolks
1 lemon (grated zest and juice)
440 gram tin crushed pineapple (well drained)
3 egg whites
½ cup caster sugar
1 cup finely dessicated coconut
Grease an 8 cm deep x 20 cm loose bottom cake tin. Use a food processor to process the biscuits until they are fine crumbs, then add the butter and process until well blended.
Press the mixture into the cake tin (bottom and sides). Process the cream cheese, ricotta and sugar, then gradually add the eggs and yolks one at a time, until just blended. Add lemon juice and zest, blend then finally the pineapple and just pulse a couple of times to mix through. Pour into the biscuit base and bake at 160°C for 40 minutes.
Set aside to cool for at least 15 minutes. Beat 3 egg whites until soft peaks form and gradually add the caster sugar, continuing to beat until the meringue is thick and glossy, then fold in the coconut. Spread the meringue over the cooked cheesecake.
Return to the oven and bake for a further 10 minutes or until it starts to go golden and is firm to touch.
Once the cheesecake has cooled to room temperature it can be removed from the tin and chilled either in an airtight container or covered in plastic wrap until serving.
No need to dress this dessert up with anything – it’s perfect just served as it is.