Lemon Icebox Cheesecake

1 1/2 cups mascarpone cheese
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup prepared lemon curd
Kosher salt
About 20 whole graham crackers
Blueberries, for serving

Line a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap, allowing 4 inches of overhang. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the mascarpone with the heavy cream at medium speed until smooth and just firm; do not overbeat. Fold in the lemon curd and a pinch of salt.

Spread a 1/4-inch-thick layer of the lemon cream on the bottom of the pan. Arrange a single layer of graham crackers on top, breaking them to fit. Repeat the layering with the remaining lemon cream and crackers, finishing with a final layer of cream. Cover the cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Uncover and invert the cheesecake onto a platter. Remove the plastic wrap. Serve with blueberries.

No-Bake White Chocolate Cheesecake with Strawberries

CRUST
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (7 ounces)
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of fine sea salt

FILLING
7 ounces white chocolate, finely chopped
1 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
1/4 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons strawberry jam mixed with 1 teaspoon hot water
Quartered strawberries, for garnish

MAKE THE CRUST
In a medium bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs with the butter, sugar, vanilla and salt until evenly moistened. Press the crumbs over the ?bottom of a 9-inch round springform pan. Freeze until firm, about 20 minutes.

MEANWHILE, MAKE THE FILLING
In a microwave-safe bowl, microwave the white chocolate on high power in 10-second intervals until just melted. Let cool slightly.

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle, beat the cream cheese with the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla bean paste and orange and lemon zests until smooth. Gradually beat in the white chocolate. Scrape the mixture into a large bowl.

Wipe out the bowl of the stand mixer and add the cream to it. Attach the whisk and beat the cream at high speed until firm peaks form. Stir one-third of the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture, then fold in the remaining whipped cream until no streaks remain. Spread the cheesecake filling over the chilled crust in an even layer. Cover with foil and refrigerate for at least ?3 hours or overnight.

Unmold the cheesecake. Top with the strawberry jam and garnish with quartered strawberries. Cut the cake into wedges and serve.

MAKE AHEAD
The cheesecake can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Top with the jam and strawberries before serving.

No-Bake Triple Cheesecake with Amaretti Crust

AMARETTI CRUST
3 ounces amaretti cookies (about 20)
2 ounces honey graham crackers (about 4 whole crackers), coarsely crushed
Pinch of kosher salt
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

CHEESECAKE
1 teaspoon unflavored powdered gelatin
3/4 cup chilled heavy cream
Two 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup fresh ricotta cheese
3/4 cup sugar
Pinch of kosher salt
1/4 cup mascarpone cheese or sour cream
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

HONEYED APRICOTS
3/4 cup honey
Three 3-inch rosemary sprigs
6 ounces dried California apricots

MAKE THE CRUST
Preheat the oven to 350°. In a food processor, pulse the amaretti with the graham crackers and salt until finely ground. Transfer the crumbs to a small bowl and stir in the butter. Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and halfway up the side of an 8-inch springform pan. Bake for about 10 minutes, until the crust is set. Cool on a rack.

MAKE THE CHEESECAKE
In a microwave-safe dish, sprinkle the gelatin over 2 tablespoons of cold water; let stand until the gelatin is softened, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, beat the heavy cream until soft peaks form; refrigerate.

MAKE THE CHEESECAKE
In a bowl, beat the cream cheese, ricotta, sugar and salt with an electric mixer at high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the mascarpone and lemon juice.

MAKE THE CHEESECAKE
Microwave the gelatin until melted, 5 seconds; scrape into the cream cheese mixture and beat until incorporated. Fold in the whipped cream. Pour the mixture into the cooled crust and smooth the surface. Refrigerate the cake until firm and set, 3 hours.

MAKE THE HONEYED APRICOTS
In a medium saucepan, combine the honey with 3 cups of water and the rosemary. Bring to a boil and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the honey is dissolved. Add the apricots and simmer until tender, 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the apricots to a bowl. Boil the rosemary syrup until thickened, 20 to 25 minutes. Strain the syrup over the apricots and let cool.

MAKE THE HONEYED APRICOTS
Unmold the cheesecake and serve with the honeyed apricots.

Cherries with Red Wine and Mascarpone

2 1/4 cups red wine
1 cup sugar
1 1-by-3-inch strip orange zest
2 pounds sweet cherries, halved and pitted
1 cup mascarpone cheese
2 1/2 tablespoons honey

In a medium stainless-steel saucepan, combine the wine, sugar, and orange zest. Bring to a simmer over moderately high heat. Add the cherries and bring back to a simmer. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, until the cherries are just tender, about 5 minutes. Pour into a glass or stainless-steel bowl so the cherries don’t overcook.

In a small bowl, combine the mascarpone with the honey. Remove the strip of orange zest from the cherries. Serve the warm cherries and syrup in bowls or stemmed glasses, topped with a large dollop of the mascarpone cream.

Variations

• The warm cherries and poaching liquid are great alone—without the mascarpone cream—or with whipped cream.

• Serve the mascarpone cream with cut up fresh fruit or mixed berries instead of with the poached cherries.

Passionfruit Ice Cream Pie with Ginger Crust

One 8-ounce box gingersnaps, lightly crushed
1 dried sweetened pineapple ring (1 1/2 ounces), coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped candied ginger
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups dulce de leche (16-ounce jar)
1/2 cup passion fruit nectar (see Note)
3 pints vanilla ice cream, slightly softened
1/4 cup salted roasted pistachios, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons shredded sweetened coconut

In a food processor, combine the crushed gingersnaps with the pineapple, candied ginger and butter and process until fine crumbs form. Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and 1 inch up the side of a 9-inch springform pan. Freeze until firm, about 10 minutes.

In a blender, blend the dulce de leche and passion fruit nectar until smooth.

Spread 1 pint of ice cream in the chilled crust. Using a very small ice cream scoop (2 tablespoons), scoop the remaining 2 pints of ice cream into the crust, leaving some nooks and crannies. Drizzle 3/4 cup of the dulce de leche sauce over the ice cream, allowing it to pool in spots. Sprinkle with the pistachios and coconut and freeze until firm, at least 2 1/2 hours.

Remove the ring and cut the pie into wedges. Serve the extra dulce de leche sauce at the table.

MAKE AHEAD
The pie can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 4 days.

NOTES
Look for passion fruit nectar at supermarkets, preferably the Looza brand.

Dark Chocolate Pudding

1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
5 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 quart half-and-half
One 3.5-ounce bar bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Lightly sweetened whipped cream and sliced candied ginger, for serving

In a medium bowl, sift together the sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch and salt.

In a large saucepan, add the half-and-half and whisk in the cocoa-powder mixture. Cook over moderate heat, whisking, until the pudding starts to bubble and thicken, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the bittersweet chocolate and vanilla.

Pour the pudding into 6-ounce ramekins and let cool, then cover and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour.

Top each pudding with whipped cream and candied ginger and serve.

No-Bake Ricotta Cheesecake with Strawberries

CRUST
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons sugar
1 1/4 cups packed graham cracker crumbs (10 to 12 whole crackers)
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch of ground ginger
Pinch of cinnamon

FILLING
1 pound fresh ricotta cheese, at room temperature
1/2 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
3 tablespoons agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch of ground ginger

TOPPINGS
1 pint strawberries, hulled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup honey

MAKE THE CRUST
In a small saucepan, melt the butter with the sugar over moderately low heat, stirring, until the sugar dissolves, about 4 minutes. In a medium bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs with the salt, ginger and cinnamon. Stir in the melted butter until the crumbs are evenly moistened. Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and up the side of a 9-inch fluted tart pan. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled, about 1 hour.

Advertisement
MAKE THE FILLING
In a large bowl, using a handheld electric mixer, beat the ricotta with the cream cheese, agave nectar, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and ginger just until smooth. Using a spatula, spread the filling in the chilled crust. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled, about 2 hours.

MEANWHILE, PREPARE THE TOPPINGS
In a medium bowl, toss the strawberries with the sugar and lemon juice. Let stand at room temperature, stirring once or twice, until the berries are juicy and slightly softened, about 30 minutes.

MEANWHILE, PREPARE THE TOPPINGS
Warm the honey over moderately low heat for 10 minutes. Strain the honey into a bowl, discarding the seeds; let cool.

MEANWHILE, PREPARE THE TOPPINGS
Cut the cheesecake into wedges, top with the strawberries and honey and serve.

MAKE AHEAD
The cheesecake can be refrigerated for up to 2 days. The honey can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 month.

Mango Fool

1 cup pureed mango
1/2 cup whole milk yogurt
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons sugar
Kosher salt

In a medium bowl, whisk together 3/4 cup of the pureed mango and yogurt. In a separate bowl, whisk the cream with the sugar and salt until it just hold stiff peaks. Fold the cream into the mango mixture. Divide the fool between 4 (4-to 5-ounce) glasses and chill until stiff, 1 hour. Divide the reserved 4 tablespoons mango puree between the glasses and serve.

Silky Chocolate Custard

1/4 cup milk
3 tablespoons sugar
1 large egg yolk
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped, plus shaved chocolate, for serving
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup heavy cream
Pinch of ground cinnamon

In a small saucepan, combine the milk and 2 tablespoons of the sugar and heat until steaming and the sugar is dissolved. Put the egg yolk in a small bowl and gradually whisk in the hot milk. Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes.

Off the heat, add the chopped chocolate and salt and whisk until smooth. Whisk in the butter. Pour the custard into 2 shallow bowls and refrigerate briefly, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, beat the heavy cream with the cinnamon and the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar until softly whipped. Dollop the cream on the custards, sprinkle the chocolate shavings on the cream and serve.

MAKE AHEAD
The chocolate custards can be prepared through Step 2 and refrigerated overnight. Serve the custards chilled or at room temperature.

Icebox Chocolate Cheesecake

70 Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafers (from 2 packages)
Three 8-ounce packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup chocolate syrup, such as Hershey’s

Put 20 of the chocolate cookies (reserving 50 whole cookies) into a zippered plastic bag and, using a rolling pin, crush them to fine crumbs. Line an 8-inch round cake pan with enough plastic wrap to extend by 4 inches all around.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese at high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the chocolate syrup and 1/4 cup of water and beat the chocolate cream for 2 minutes.

Arrange 9 cookies in an overlapping ring on the bottom of the prepared cake pan and place 1 cookie in the center. Spoon one-fourth of the chocolate cream (about 1 1/4 cups) over the cookies, being careful not to disturb them. Repeat with the remaining cookies and chocolate cream, ending with a layer of 10 cookies on top. Fold the plastic wrap over the top of the cake. Lightly tap the pan once or twice on a work surface. Refrigerate the cake for at least 8 hours and preferably overnight.

Peel back the plastic wrap and invert the cake onto a serving plate. Carefully peel off the plastic wrap. Press the cookie crumbs onto the side of the cake to coat evenly. Cut into wedges and serve.

MAKE AHEAD
The plastic-wrapped cake can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Cold-Brewed Coffee

1/2cup ground coffee (medium-coarse grind is best)
Milk (optional)

In a jar, stir together coffee and 1 1/2 cups cold water. Cover and let rest at room temperature overnight or 12 hours.

Strain twice through a coffee filter, a fine-mesh sieve or a sieve lined with cheesecloth. In a tall glass filled with ice, mix equal parts coffee concentrate and water, or to taste. If desired, add milk.

Braised Pork with Red Wine

2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, cut into large chunks
Salt and pepper
2 cups fruity red wine, like Beaujolais or Burgundy (pinot noir)
1 cup good stock, or water
1 pound fat carrots, peeled and cut into large chunks
10 cloves garlic, more or less, peeled
2 tablespoons butter

Cooked egg noodles for serving
Chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish

Combine pork, salt and pepper to taste, wine, stock, carrots and garlic in a saucepan, Dutch oven or slow cooker. Bring to a boil, then adjust heat so that mixture simmers steadily but not vigorously. (If using a slow cooker, just turn it to ”high” and let cook for at least three hours.)

Cook, stirring every half-hour or so, until meat is very tender and just about falling apart, at least an hour and most likely a bit longer. Use a slotted spoon to remove solid ingredients to a bowl, then turn heat to high. (If using a slow cooker, transfer liquid to a saucepan for this step.) Reduce to about a cup, or even less. Taste and adjust seasoning, then lower heat and stir in butter.

Add solids to sauce and reheat. Serve over egg noodles, garnished with parsley.

Vietnamese Slow Cooked Pork

FOR THE PORK:
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 medium-size yellow onion, peeled and diced
8 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1/2 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup fish sauce
1 tablespoon sriracha sauce
1/2 bone-in pork shoulder, skin and fat removed, approximately 5 pounds
12 to 16 flour tortillas, warmed

FOR THE SLAW:
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1 tablespoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons neutral oil, like peanut or grapeseed
1 teaspoon sriracha sauce, or to taste
1 small green cabbage, cored and sliced thinly
2 medium-size cucumbers, peeled and sliced into julienne
2 medium-size carrots, peeled and sliced into julienne
1 Asian pear, peeled, cored and sliced into julienne
1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, rinsed, dried and roughly chopped

Prepare the pork: Place a sauté pan over medium-high heat. After a minute or so, swirl in the sesame oil and then the onions, stirring to combine. Sauté for about 5 minutes, then add the garlic and continue to cook until the onions are soft and becoming translucent. Turn off the heat, stir in the ginger and set aside.

Add the hoisin sauce and the fish sauce to the pan, and stir to combine, loosening the mixture with a little less than half a cup of water. Add sriracha sauce to taste.

Put a few spoonfuls of the sauce in the bottom of a slow cooker, then nestle the pork on top of it. Pour the remaining sauce over the top of the pork. Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 5 to 7 hours, or until the pork shreds easily with a fork. Remove the pork from the slow cooker and allow to rest for a few minutes.

Meanwhile, make the slaw: Put the vinegar, ginger, sesame oil, neutral oil and sriracha sauce in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Add the cabbage, cucumbers, carrots and Asian pear and toss to combine.

Shred the pork with a pair of forks. Discard bones. Return the pulled pork to the slow cooker and stir to combine with the juices. Serve with the slaw and warmed tortillas, with the cilantro on the side.