After my recent beer and Labneh pairing, I thought I might try something a little unusual and make a Labneh cheesecake glazed with chocolate porter while using spent grains from brewing for my crust.
Labneh Cheesecake with Beer Glaze
Tasting the Labneh Cheesecake
The first thing you notice is strong expresso notes from the chocolate porter glaze. The espresso blends into raisin, chocolate, vanilla, and other flavours all balanced across the palate no one taking prominence except when you look for them. Then the flavours all fade into the pleasantly bitter aftertaste of high quality espresso. I can still taste a hint of espresso bitterness now, half an hour after eating.
The very healthy cheesecake only retains the slightest tinge of yoghurt tartness from the Labneh. It serves as an excellent platform for the chocolate porter glaze unifying all the strong flavours from the glaze. The fat helps cleanse the palate letting you appreciate new flavours as they develop. Sour is about the only flavour not in the glaze so the light yoghurt tartness is very refreshing against all the heavier flavours competing on the tongue.
Even though the spent barley was from a stout, I could only detect a slight flavour of the base malt. It worked fine as a crust, but it was a little moist and crumbly. It feels fibrous in the mouth, but not unpleasantly so.
It was very good. And there were a number of firsts for me and original experiments:
- My first cheesecake (I’m a good cook, but don’t normally do desserts).
- My first cheesecake crust.
- The first Labneh cheesecake that I know of.
- The first spent barley crust that I know of.
- The first dessert beer glaze that I know of.
It may not have been perfect, but all things considered this first try deserves an A+.
This recipe is slightly modified from what I made today. I didn’t use flour originally, but I think the addition of flour will help soak up the liquid and make it easier to spread the crust up the side of the pan. If you or any guests have gluten allergies, then leave out the flour and maybe dry out the barley in the oven before mixing it.
- 1.5 cups spent barley
- 1 small egg
- 0.5 cups suger
- 0.5 cups flour
- 3 tbsp melted butter/margarine
Mix all the ingredients together. Spread thinly in a greased cake pan. Cook for about 20 mins. Remove from oven before adding cheese.
The Cheese Filling
You can make Labneh with light or full fat yoghurt. Either way Labneh is alot healthier than cream cheese normally used in cheesecake.
- 2 litres Yoghurt
- 3 eggs
- 0.5 cups sugar
- 0.5 tsp vanilla
- 0.5 tsp salt
Start the Labneh at least a day before making the cheesecake. 2 days is even better. Sling the yoghurt in a clean hankerchief or put it in a coffee strainer-lined colander and let the whey drain from the yoghurt. Make sure you Google whey so that you know not to waste it. The curds that remain after the whey has drained off is Labneh.
When you are ready to make the cheesecake, mix all the ingredients together. They should soften up a little and expand as some air gets in to the mixture. Mix more or less depending on how light or heavy a cheesecake you want to make. Put the filling in the crust and bake at 350 for about 40 minutes or until lightly browned.
Chocolate Porter Glaze
I used Phillips Brewing Longboat Double Chocolate Porter, but I’d be willing to try this with any porter, or sweet stout. I also wanted to use agar as a thickener, but couldn’t find any nearby so I fell back on corn starch. This glaze would also work really well over pork.
- 500 ml Chocolate Porter
- 0.25 cups sugar
- 2 tsp corn starch
Cook beer and sugar in a sauce pan over medium heat until the liquid has reduced to about 1/3 the original volume. Dissolve the corn starch in water and add to the sauce pan. Cook for another 3-5 minutes, cool, and pour over cheesecake.