Today is St Andrews Day and a celebration of all things Scotland. Scotland has always been in my blood with three Scottish Grandparents and I spent the last ten years living in Edinburgh. When I was thinking about a recipe for today my mind wandered to all the things I enjoyed about Scotland. Memories of macaroni pies whenever we visited the family, chomping on highland toffee at Granny Motherwell’s, venison stews, mussels from a holiday in Oban, and the always scrumptious Anne Clark’s Steak Pies.
Produce in Scotland is second to none and I could have made a recipe up that celebrated it. However, there is one Scottish product that is a stand out for me, and that’s Irn Bru. It reminds me of my childhood, teenage years and adulthood. From being a 10p bar studded with black sherbet, to reminding me of visits to the family to acting as a vodka mixer in my student days.
So today’s recipe is a celebration of Irn Bru. Turned into a sugar syrup and at an easy fridge cheesecake. I could suggest eating while listening to bagpipes but I think that might be a little too much!
· 200 g digestive biscuits and a couple of caramel wafers
· 50 g butter, melted
· 500 g full-fat cream cheese
· 100 g icing sugar
· 1 tsp vanilla extract
· 200 ml double cream, lightly whipped
· 500ml Irn Bru
· 1 tbsp Cornstarch
1. In a plastic bag smash up the biscuits to make a crumb. In a mixing bowl, mix together the biscuit crumbs and melted butter.
2. Spoon the biscuit mixture into a 22cm spring-form cake tin lined with baking paper. Use a metal spoon to press the biscuit crumbs down firmly and evenly. Chill in the refrigerator until set.
3. In a large mixing bowl, using a whisk or a wooden spoon, beat together the cream cheese, icing sugar and vanilla extract until well mixed. In a saucepan simmer the Irn Bru till it reduces by half.
4. Fold in the double cream, mixing well.
5. Spoon the cream mixture over the chilled biscuit base, making sure that there are no air bubbles. Smooth the top of the cheesecake with a palette knife or metal spoon. Mix the cornstarch with a small drop of Irn Bru and mix. Once well combined pour into the saucepan and thicken.
6. Chill the cheesecake in the refrigerator for 1 hour until set. Pour over the Irn Bru syrup and add your own flashes of inspiration. I used gold powder and gold sugar rocks.
7. To serve, remove from the cake tin and cut into slices.