Summer time means mango time! Make the most of the mango season with this fresh mango cheesecake.
Whatever your favourite mango variety may be, you can be sure that they’re rich in:
- Vitamin C for healthy skin, immune function and iron absorption from your food (a cup of chopped mangoes gives you 100% of your daily vitamin C)
- Vitamin A for eye health, healthy skin and immune function (a cup of chopped mangoes provides over a third of your daily vitamin A)
- Folate for red blood cell and DNA maintenance and supporting healthy pregnancy for women
- Fibre for digestive health and warding off those hunger pangs.
From Calypso to R2E2 and Kensington Pride, Australians are blessed with an abundance of fresh sweet mangoes perfectly timed with the festive season. Each type of mango has their own special feature:
- Kensington Pride has a light and sweet flesh with a yellow-orange blush
- Calypso has a smooth sweet flesh that’s great for pureeing and smoothies as it doesn’t leave stringy fibres
- Honey Gold has a rich sweetness with a glossy golden skin (true to its name) but tend to be smaller than the other varieties
- R2E2 is much larger than the other varieties and has a milder sweetness with deep orange skin and red blush, but eat them quick or freeze them as they ripen fast!
… and there’s so many more varieties!
For this recipe, any mango would do the trick – so go all out with your favourite! I used Kensington Pride because they are a household favourite (not too sweet, but tender and juicy) but it would also be wise to look out for what’s on special at your local shops. Local farmers markets can also have great bargains (e.g. Harris Farms, Flemington Markets in Sydney).
Lighten up your cheesecake
Cheesecakes are typically quite a heavy dessert, made with cream cheese and a cookie base, which can be a bit too much on a hot summer day. Yet, the fresh mangoes in this no-bake cheesecake balances out the heaviness of the cream for true summer bliss.
Choose regular thickened cream:
Light thickened cream usually does not whip – and some brands even have a caveat on the container saying “Does not whip”! Whipping the thickened cream gives the cheesecake its touch of lightness and without this it will feel overly heavy.
Choose light cream cheese:
While you need to opt in for full-fat thickened cream, opt for the light varieties of the cream cheese you use! The cream cheese doesn’t need to be whipped, so it doesn’t matter too much in terms of cooking whether you choose light vs regular. Health wise, light is the way to go because gram for gram you’ll be saving yourself a third of the kilojoules and saturated fat.
|Regular cream cheese||Light cream cheese|
|Total fat (g)||34.1||21.9|
|Saturated fat (g)||23.8||15.3|
*Based on Philadelphia cream cheese block – original vs light. For more information, visit their website here.
Now, if you’re dreading a de ja vu of tasting skim milk after a life of full cream milk, never fear! The light version is still just as creamy as the regular versions – in fact, it will compliment the fresh flavour and soft texture of the mangoes without overpowering it in the final product.
Time to unleash your inner florist and get creative 🙂
Serves: 12 slices
Cost: $25.65 ($2.15 per slice)
Cooking time: 1 hour + overnight chilling
- 4 fresh mangoes (see Notes)
- 200g Belvita biscuits (4 x 50g packets), or any other high-fibre biscuits (see Notes)
- 80g reduced-salt spread, melted (canola or sunflower oil spread are fine)
- 500g light cream cheese
- 1/4 cup caster sugar, or low-GI sugar alternative
- 300ml regular thickened cream
- 1 tbsp gelatin
- 1/4 cup hot water
- 1tsp caster sugar, or low-GI sugar alternative
- 1/4 cup hot water
- 1 tbsp gelatin
Let’s get cooking:
- Lightly spray the base and all sides of a 20cm loose cake tin with canola oil and line with baking paper.
- Cut mango cheeks and peel or use the ‘scoop technique’ to scoop out mango flesh from cheeks. Repeat with remaining mangoes. Thinly slice cheeks into thin semicircles and place in a large dish, cover with cling wrap and chill in fridge until use. Here’s a How to Cut a Mango 101 to brush up on your mango skills!
- Process biscuits in a food processor until they form fine crumbs. Add melted spread and pulse until well combined and forms a moist mixture. (If you do not have a food processor, place biscuits in a large zip lock bag and crush with a rolling pin. Pour the crushed biscuits into a mixing bowl and mix in the melted spread)
- Press the dough firmly into base of the prepared cake tin. Cover tin with plastic wrap and place in fridge to chill until use.
- Beat the cream cheese and sugar in a large mixing bowl until smooth. In a separate bowl, whip the thickened cream until thick. Gently fold into cream cheese mixture to combine.
- Prepare hot water in a small bowl and gradually whisk in gelatin until well combined (make sure there are no clumps left to avoid lumps of gelatin jelly in your cheesecake layers!). Whisk in a couple of tablespoons of cream cheese mixture into the gelatin liquid to form a smooth paste. Pour gelatin paste into the remaining cream cheese and fold in well (mixing the gelatin well will ensure a solid finish).
- Spread half the cream cheese mixture over the chilled biscuit base, smoothing the top with a wet spoon or spatula. Line one-third of the mango slices all over the cheese to form a layer (choose the odd ends and smaller slices that you won’t be able to use for the floral topping). Spread the remaining cream cheese over the mango layer and smooth the top.
- To make the mango bouquet: layer mango slices on top of cheesecake, starting from the border and allowing slices to overlap as you work inwards – leave a small circle in the centre for the flowers to nestle in (circle size will depend on how many flowers you want to make). See my step by step guide to make the mango flowers. Make different sized mango flowers and arrange in the centre space. Curl any remaining mango pieces or make them into squiggle shapes and arrange around the centre flowers for a ‘leafy’ effect.
- To make the glaze: mix sugar and hot water in a small bowl and gradually whisk in gelatin until well combined and no clumps are left. Using a brush, apply glaze all over the mango bouquet. Refrigerate overnight or until firm.Slice to serve.
- You can peel and slice the mangoes up to one day in advance of making the cake. Store slices on a plate, cover with cling wrap and chill in fridge overnight until use. Preparing the mangoes too far in advance may make them lose their firmness and the slices will stick together (uh-oh). If you know you’ll be time-poor on the day, make the cheesecake up to step 7 in advance, then make the mango bouquet on the day.
- For base: I used Belvita milk and cereal biscuits – they’re conveniently packaged so that you can crushed the biscuits with a rolling pin in their packets, then pour the content into a mixing bowl and crush any large pieces you may have missed. Just remember to not go overboard with the rolling pin, as the packets will burst open – and the cleanup isn’t fun. A mortar and pestle or the end of the rolling pin works too. If you decide to use another biscuit, choose one that’s made of wholegrains (check ingredients list) and check the nutrition label for one that has more than 5g fibre per 100g. Top tip: if a product claims to be a “source of fibre” must have at least 2g per serve – which isn’t very much to make to jump out of your chair when you compare it to your daily target of 25-30g.
|Total fat (g)||26.9|
|– Saturated fat (g)||14.9|
|– Sugars (g)||24.5|
|Vitamin A (μg) *||792|
|Vitamin C (mg) **||36|
* Adult daily recommendations for vitamin A is approximately 700μg/day for women and 900μg/day for men.
**Adult daily recommendations for vitamin C is approximately 45mg/day for women and men
Recipe inspiration from Coles Magazine