Savoury cheesecake with garden peas

Savoury cheesecake with garden peas

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  • 10–12 as a starter
  • Easy
  • Meat-free
  • 15 minutes, plus 1 hour’s chilling time
  • 1 hour
  • Lismore Viognier 2015


  • For the shortcrust pastry:
  • 300 g cake flour
  • 2 t baking powder
  • ½ t fine salt
  • 220 g cold butter
  • 3 large free-range egg yolks
  • 4 t ice-cold water
  • 2 x 250 g creamed cottage cheese tubs
  • 1 x 250 g crème fraîche tub
  • ½ t salt
  • 8 jumbo free-range eggs
  • 2 cups shelled peas
  • 4 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 1 t lemon zest

Cooking Instructions

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

To make the pastry, sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Coarsely grate the butter into the dry ingredients. Mix the egg yolks and water in a small jug. Pour the egg mixture into the dry ingredients and mix using your hands to form a soft dough. Wrap in clingwrap and chill for 1 hour.

Butter a 22 cm, deep, loosebottomed cake tin. Roll out the pastry and line the cake tin with a thin layer of pastry. Combine the cottage cheese and crème fraîche in a mixing bowl and add the salt. Beat the eggs lightly and stir into the cheese mixture until all the ingredients are combined. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake for 20 minutes.

Reduce the oven’s temperature to 160°C and bake for a further 20 minutes. Check the cheesecake and if the top of the cake or the pastry edge is browning too fast, protect it with a double layer of baking paper or tinfoil. Bake for a further 20 minutes.

When the top of the cheesecake feels firm to the touch, remove it from the oven and leave to rest for 10 minutes, then remove the cake ring.

Boil the peas in boiling, salted water for 1–2 minutes, or until they turn bright green and are still firm, but cooked. Drain in a colander. Scatter the peas and spring onions over the cheesecake and sprinkle with the lemon zest. Serve slices of the warm cheesecake with extra peas on the side.

Chef's note: “One of the best gifts of spring is a basket of fresh peas and if you get to sit outside with a friend while you shell your peas, it has the makings of a celebration. The texture and simple fl avouring of this savoury cheesecake provide the perfect backdrop to turn the overused and underrated pea into a star again.”

Mariana Esterhuizen Recipe by: Mariana Esterhuizen
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