Cheesecake and poppy seed tartlets

lemon cheesecake tartlets © dan and tuesday

lemon cheesecake tartlets © dan and tuesday

Last weekend, I saw a recipe which I couldn’t resist: tartlet cheesecake and you make your own pastry from scratch! It’s a recipe that calls for lemon and poppy seeds which are lovely together. I love a really tart lemon poppy seed loaf!

This lemon cheesecake tartlet is really, really good! The cheesecake just melts in your mouth and the pastry is soft with a hint of lemon tartness mixed with the poppy seeds. It is a Yotam Ottolenghi recipe published in The Guardian Weekend last week. For the non-UK blog visitors, it’s a magazine which comes out every Saturday with The Guardian newspaper.

It’s very easy to make but it takes awhile for the tarts to be ready.

poppy seeds © kirsten loza

poppy seeds © dan and tuesday

For the poppy seed pastry you need:

  • 170 g plain flour plus extra
  • 50 g icing sugar
  • 90 g cold butter, diced
  • 1/2 tbsp grated lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp poppy seed
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 free-range egg yolk
  • about 1 tbsp cold water

For the cheesecake you need:

  • 200 g cream cheese (I used extra light Philadelphia cream cheese, perhaps it would set better if I used the full-fat version? I’ll let you know next time!)
  • 60g caster sugar
  • 2 small free-range eggs
  • 90 g sour cream
  • 2 small lemons for 50 ml lemon juice and 1 tbsp zest
  • butter for brushing the tins
  • icing sugar to sprinkle


  • mixing bowls
  • lemon juicer and zester
  • shallow muffin tins or tartlet tins or silicone bakeware
  • rolling pin
  • food processor
  • hand whisk
  • baking beans

What to do:

  1. Make the pastry by putting the flour, sugar, butter, zest, poppy seed, and salt in a food processor and let it mix for a bit. Then mix the egg yolk and just enough water so that it’s all together.

    pastry dough © kirsten loza

    pastry dough © dan and tuesday

  2. Take the pastry out, wrap in a cling wrap and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  3. Pre-heat oven to 160˚C. Grease the baking tin or silicone bakeware with butter.
  4. Flour your work space and roll out the pastry  until it’s about 1/2 cm thick.
  5. Cut circles- the recipe says 8 but I manage to get a dozen out of my pastry. Line the tin with pastry circles. The put it back on the fridge for 20 minutes.

    cutting circles © dan and tuesday

    cutting circles © dan and tuesday

  6. Line each pastry case with baking parchment and fill it with baking beans. Bake for 15 minutes until golden. Take out of the oven, remove the beans out and let the pastry cool down. Lower the oven temperature to 150˚C.

    baking beans © dan and tuesday

    baking beans © dan and tuesday

  7. Now to make the cheesecake – whisk the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add the sour cream,  lemon juice and zest.
  8. Fill the pastry cases with cream cheese to the top and bake for 15 minutes until it has set.

    lemon cheesecake tartlet © dan and tuesday

    lemon cheesecake tartlet © dan and tuesday

  9. Leave to cool then chill for about an hour before removing from the tin.
  10. Dust with icing sugar before serving, if you like.

    Very, very delicious cheesecake tartlet © dan and tuesday

    Very, very delicious cheesecake tartlet © dan and tuesday


Cappuccino cheesecake

cappuccino cheesecake © tuesday

cappuccino cheesecake © tuesday

With my oven’s thermostat fixed,  I’m so excited to try a new dessert. Something I haven’t done before. My first stop is the Divine: Heavenly Chocolate recipes book. It has wonderful recipes with beautiful images. This is the second recipe I’ve used from the book. The first one was the rich, dark chocolate cup cake.

The cheesecake turned out really well. It has a perfect texture and the coffee taste really works well with its creaminess.

Oh, I should remind you that this is best prepared the day before. Now how to make this gorgeous dessert…

You need:

biscuits © tuesy

biscuits © tuesday

For the base of the cheesecake

  • 1 bar of dark chocolate or Divine coffee chocolate (100g)
  • 50 g unsalted butter, diced
  • 200g Hob Nobs or digestive biscuits

crushing biscuits © tuesday

crushing biscuits © tuesday

For the cheesecake

  • 500g cream cheese (I used Philadelphia)
  • 125g light muscovado sugar
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 2 tsp instant coffee dissolved in 1tbsp of hot water
  • 1 tbsp Kahlua (optional)
  • 2 large free range eggs

Dusting: cocoa powder


  • 23cm spring based cake tin, greased, put on a baking tray
  • Oven pre-heat at 160˚C

What to do:

  1. melting chocolate © tuesday

    melting chocolate © tuesday

    Break the chocolate into small pieces, put in a heat-proof bowl with the diced unsalted butter. Melt together. If you have not done this before, you can read here.

  2. Crush the biscuits. I put them in a ziplock bag and then used a rolling pin.
  3. Once the chocolate with butter is melted, remove from heat and then add the crushed biscuit. Mix very well then tip the mixture into the cake tin. Press the mixture into the base of of the tin and halfway up the side. Chill.
  4. cheesecake mixture © tuesday

    cheesecake mixture © tuesday

    For the cheesecake, put all the filling ingredients in a food processor and run it until the mixture is smooth. Pour the filling on top of the cheesecake base.

  5. Bake for about 40 minutes until it has set then turn off the heat and leave the cheesecake and let it cool in the oven.
  6. Cover and let it chill overnight.

    © tuesday

    © tuesday

  7. A good trick in removing the cheesecake from a spring-based tin is by putting it on top of a tinned beans (or tomatoes) and then unclip to let the sides drop.
  8. Dust the cappuccino cheesecake heavily with cocoa.
  9. This can be stored but must eat within 4 days.
removing cheesecake from cake tin © tuesday

removing cheesecake from cake tin © tuesday

The photos I took for this recipe are also part of my project in the Intro to Photography class I am currently taking. The homework is take images that shows depth of field. If you have some time, please please please visit my flickr site by clicking here.

If you want to see the cappuccino cheesecake collection, you can click here. Or to see in a jazzy slideshow, click here.

Thanks! xx