Whip up this truly indulgent cheesecake, topped with a rich salted caramel and cashews.
I love salted nuts and caramel together and could only imagine how amazing cashews were with a nice dark caramel. You can use a lighter caramel if you want, but for me darker caramel is the best. It has so much more depth to the flavor and pairs really well with a sweet dessert like cheesecake. My guess was right. Salted cashews and caramel is possibly the best combination ever. Next time I make this cheesecake, I think I will need to cover the entire cheesecake in the mixture, not just the edges.
This cheesecake doesn’t even need a crust. The cake is already so indulgent with so many flavors that you don’t even miss it. If you really want a crust you can add it. I wouldn’t blame you! I just think Heather was right in leaving it out. The texture of the cheesecake is so incredibly light and airy. Unlike most other cheesecakes, I also did not have any issues with cracking. The cheesecake does puff quite a bit in the oven, but if you keep your parchment paper high enough, it won’t overflow in the slightest. For the best results, I made my cheesecake the night before and made the caramel the next day so that I knew the cheesecake would be nice and chilled and ready to go when I was ready to devour it whole. I mean serve it to everyone.
- 32 oz cream cheese, room temperature
- 4 cups ricotta cheese, room temperature
- ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons water
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups salted cashews
- 1 ½ teaspoons Fleur de sel
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Grease a deep 9-inch springform pan, then line the bottom and sides with parchment paper, leaving the parchment to stick up about 4 inches past the pan (the cheesecake puffs a lot).
- Beat the cream cheese, ricotta, and butter until smooth and creamy. Beat in the sugar and beat until fluffy. Add in the flour, cornstarch and mix well.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time beating well – at least one minute - between each addition of egg. Stir in the lemon juice and vanilla extract and mix until combined.
- Pour the batter into the pan and place in the center of the oven on the middle rack and bake for about 1 hour and 20 minutes. The edges will pull away and be a light golden brown. The top will be very puffed.
- Remove and cool for about 20 minutes, then carefully run a knife around the edges. Allow to cool completely in the springform pan, then transfer to the refrigerator to chill in the pan for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
- Make the topping. Mix the sugar and water together in a saucepan and heat on medium high until the sugar dissolves and the mixture turns amber – or a very dark amber if you like a dark caramel like me. Remove from heat immediately and stir in the heavy cream. The mixture will bubble, so be careful. Stir in the vanilla extract.
- Allow the mixture to cool until it is almost room temperature, but still a little warm to the touch. Toss in the cashews and stir to combine. Spoon out the cashews and place around the cheesecake. Pour the remaining caramel in the middle of the cheesecake. Top with Fleur de sel.