Ruth Wignot of Lenior City, Tenn., was looking for a recipe for a cheesecake that uses an artificial sweetener in place of sugar. Janet Morrissey of Baltimore sent in a recipe for what she says is "without a doubt the best sugar-free cheesecake around."
It is from George Stella's Food Network show, Low Carb and Lovin' It. The recipe is for a crustless cheesecake, but Morrissey says she has mixed finely chopped nuts, Splenda and butter to make a very thin bottom crust. She thinks, however, that it really doesn't need a crust.
I tested the recipe without making a crust; considering it was made using a sugar substitute, it was very good. As the recipe suggests, I used Splenda as the sweetener. I have found that it acts the most like real sugar in baking.
Thanks to the ricotta and the cream cheese, the cake was dense and creamy and had a nice, lemony flavor with only a slight aftertaste from the sweetener. It is best to make it at least a day before serving so it has time to firm up in the refrigerator.
Amy Ackerman of Aurora, Ore., is looking for a recipe for a casserole she calls "Lox Lotta," made with scalloped potatoes and salmon.
Ella Krichinsky of Dundalk would like to have a recipe for plain brown-edged cookies.
If you are looking for a hard-to-find recipe or can answer a request, write to Julie Rothman, Recipe Finder, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore 21278, or e-mail email@example.com.
The nutrition analyses accompanying recipes in today's Taste section were calculated by registered dietitian Jodie Shield, except where noted.
Low-Carb New York Ricotta Cheesecake
24 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup extra-fine whole milk ricotta cheese (to refine, process in a food processor for 1 minute)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups sugar substitute (Splenda recommended)
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon no-sugar-added vanilla extract
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3 egg yolks
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray bottom of an 8-inch springform pan with nonstick vegetable spray. Set aside. In a shallow roasting pan big enough to fit the cake pan, pour about 1 inch of water and place it on the center rack of the oven to preheat.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat softened cream cheese, ricotta, sour cream and sugar substitute on low speed for about 1 minute until well blended.
In a separate bowl, using wire whisk, mix heavy cream, vanilla extract, lemon juice, eggs and egg yolks until blended.
Turn the mixer on medium speed, and slowly pour the egg mixture into the cream-cheese mixture. Beat until blended and then turn off; be careful not to over-whip.
Pour batter into greased springform pan. Place pan into heated water bath. Bake for 15 minutes, and then lower the oven temperature to 275 degrees.
Continue baking for 1 1/2 hours, or until top is light golden brown and cake is pulling away from sides of pan. Turn the oven off when finished cooking and leave the cake in the oven to cool for 3 more hours. Then remove cake and refrigerate before serving. Serve chilled.
Per serving: 318 calories, 9 grams protein, 29 grams fat, 18 grams saturated fat, 6 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fiber, 173 milligrams cholesterol, 207 milligrams sodium