Recipe: Little and Friday’s berry cheesecakes

The ultimate DIY dessert for your big day – Little and Friday's berry cheesecakes.

    Here at New Zealand Weddings, our love for tantalising treats means Auckland’s two Little and Friday cafés have a firm standing on our list of favourite sustenance stop-off points. So you can imagine our excitement when Kim Evans’ Little and Friday Celebrations, aka 192 pages of delectable DIY delight, landed on our desks. The recipe book, in stores October 25, has a stack of sumptuous guides to catapult your reception menu to a whole new level of heavenly. This recipe for berry cheesecakes is proof enough why Little and Friday Celebrations is a must-buy.


    200g chocolate biscotti
    50g unsalted butter
    1 punnet strawberries
    125g Philadelphia cream cheese
    ¼ cup caster sugar
    1/2tsp rosewater
    300ml cream
    4 leaves gelatine
    1 punnet raspberries

    100ml water
    ¼ cup caster sugar
    1 punnet raspberries, plus a few extra to garnish
    2 leaves gelatine
    ½ cup pomegranate seeds
    pansies, borage or violets, to garnish

    Makes 8 – these are best made a day in advance so the topping has a chance to set.

    1. Grease eight 8cm diameter x 6cm deep metal ring moulds and place on a tray lined with baking paper.
    2. Place biscotti and butter in a food processor and blitz for two minutes until mixture resembles crumbs. Distribute mixture evenly between moulds and, using a glass, press mixture firmly to form a solid base.
    3. Slice strawberries into 3mm-thick slices and line the sides of the moulds, overlapping the slices. Place in the refrigerator to chill.
    4. Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese with sugar and rosewater until soft and smooth. Turn out into another bowl. Pour 250ml cream into mixer bowl and whisk until soft peaks form. Fold cream into cream cheese mixture.
    5. Meanwhile, soak gelatine in cold water for two minutes to soften.
    6. Pour remaining 50ml cream into a saucepan and heat until warm but not boiling. Remove from heat.
    7. Remove gelatine from water and squeeze out excess water using a clean tea towel. Add gelatine to warm cream and stir to dissolve.
    8. Mix gelatine and cream into cream cheese mixture. Add raspberries and stir to combine.
    9. Pour mixture into moulds and refrigerate for two hours until set.
    10. To make raspberry topping, in a saucepan mix water, sugar, and raspberries. Simmer for five minutes. Remove from heat and strain mixture through a sieve. Reserve raspberry syrup.
    11. Soak gelatine in water for two minutes to soften. Remove and squeeze out excess water. Stir gelatine into raspberry syrup/ Allow to cool slightly before pouring over cheesecakes. Syrup shouldn’t be so hot that it elts the cheesecake. Refrigerate overnight to allow topping to set.
    12. When ready to serve, remove cheesecakes from moulds by running a palette knife soaked in hot water around the inside of the moulds, then gently lifting them off.
    13. Decorate cheesecakes with pomegranate seeds, fresh edible flowers and a raspberry. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

    Kitchen notes:
    • Ring moulds are available from kitchenware stores. 
    • I use Philadelphia cream cheese because a firm cream cheese is required to ensure the cheesecakes set. 

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