Have Yourself A Merry Little Cheesecake

This isn't really a Christmas or holiday cheesecake. Well, it is in the world of color themes, but not in taste. Let me back it up a little here...

So, I have been doing some catering and personal chef work. It's been a lot of fun. Of course when I started doing it, my mom immediately wanted to support me because she's an awesome mom like that. Every year she has a Christmas party for her office, and this year she asked me to cater for her. It was going to be Asian themed, which normally isn't my strong suit, but lately (because of the dairy free thing) I've found more and more Asian recipe sneaking their way into my repertoire.

Back to the cheesecake at hand. I had to come up with a dessert. My mom requested cheesecake, which of course isn't near Asian at all, but then, like a lightbulb going off, I had it: why not make a green tea cheesecake?!

For this, I used one of my favorite little secrets to bake with: matcha! It's green tea powder.

Matcha can be a little expensive, but it's worth every penny because just one small container goes a long, long way. You can use it to make all sorts of stuff from iced green tea lattes to my green tea wedding cake cookies to this awesome cheesecake you are about to make. So splurge. Treat yourself to this amazing little powder packed with green tea goodness. (No, this was not a paid advertisement, I'm just passionate about my powda.) 

Any-who, this dessert will look beautiful on a Christmas dessert table, but also would be wonderful in any season. The flavors lend themselves to any time of year, if you ask me. So let's get to it. Ladies and gentlemen, start your ovens. We're gonna make some cheesecake with a slightly Asian twist.

Green Tea Cheesecake 
Time: 1 hr, 30 mins | Makes: 1 hell of a cheesecake | Difficulty: Easy-ish 

You Will Need: 

2 cups shortbread cookie crumbs
2 -8 ounce packages of cream cheese (room temperature) 
1/2 cup greek yogurt 
4 eggs 
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract 
3 teaspoons matcha powder 
1 small package of raspberries
Fresh mint 

Special equipment: Springform cake pan and a bigger bake pan that will hold it. 


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. 

Take tin foil and wrap the bottom of the springform pan (from the outside) with three layers of the foil. Grease the pan and then press the shortbread crumbs in the bottom (not the sides, just the bottom) of the pan. Set aside. 

In a stand mixer, mix the cream cheese, yogurt and sugar until smooth. I did a medium (ish) speed. Once mixed, add your eggs, one at a time and vanilla. Once incorporated, go ahead and add your matcha. I found that little beads of matcha stayed in unmixed, and it came out just fine. Just be sure it's about as incorporated as it can be. 

Pour your mixture into your prepared springform pan. 

Place that pan into a larger pan and fill it halfway with hot water. Carefully place the cheesecake into the oven and bake it about an hour or until the center moves just slightly. I found it took about an hour an fifteen minutes, but my oven gets a little weird sometimes. 

When finished, carefully remove the pan from the oven and then remove the springform pan from the water. Place it on a wire rack to cool for one hour and then place in the refrigerator up to two days before serving. 

To serve: Take the outer ring off the springform pan and place the cake on a serving tray. Slice your mint or tear into "rustic" pieces. Mix with the raspberries and then place the mixture on the cheesecake. Slice and serve! 

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