Dinner with friends

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Saturday night was toward the end of my long summer holiday and I was looking forward to catching up with my friend Sandra.

Being the end of the holidays I was so much in un-wind mode that dinner at the local Thai with an offer of dessert and coffee was all I could manage.

I always love making a good baked ricotta cheesecake though. You can be creative with bases and toppings and know exactly what to expect from the baked ricotta section.

I resourcefully used left over Christmas shortbreads, a little cocoa and ginger and tasmanian butter for the base – just mix together in food processor.

The middle section is 500g fresh ricotta, small tub of light cream cheese, 2 eggs & 1/3 cup icing sugar. you can vary the amount of icing sugar depending on your need for sugar. These also get mixed together in food processor until smooth and creamy, which happens fairly quickly. The cake is baked at 160 for about 55 mins or until firm and golden.

The topping is a mixture of raspberries, a spoonful of marsala and a dash of icing sugar – put together in a saucepan and heated for a minute so the raspberries don’t lose their lovely form. The topping is poured over prior to serving.

The best thing about doing this dessert is that it tastes better the next day , so you get to enjoy the left overs as a true ‘cooks treat’.

PS – Other good toppings include:  * fresh date, pecan ,cinnamon & honey warmed together in a small saucepan * caramelised banana and pear  * chocolate ganache, white & dark chocolate shards with sour cherries

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