I bought strawberries having in mind 2-3 recipes and this cheese cake was the one among them. The waiting time for setting the cheese cake killed me but it is worth the wait :) Should admit, I couldnt wait to dig in, it was that tempting :)
Cheese cake was never onto my todo list for 2 main reasons: 1. When I googled it called for cream cheese as a major ingredient 2.Spring form cake pan as both of them were out of my reach so never bothered to give a try. When I saw this recipe which used hung curd, I cudnt give any more excuses, so instantly tried it :) Also if you dont have spring form pan, you can make your cheese cake in a glass which is a easy way to serve in individual portions. Mittu so so loved it and said amma make it daily...what more can satisfy a mother :)
1.Hang curd in a cloth for an hour to drain water completely to get 1/2 cup of hung curd. Set aside. Then crush biscuits roughly and powder to a semi fine mixture.
2.Then add melted butter to the powdered biscuits and mix well such that the mixture becomes moist. Spoon and fill it up as a base layer in each glass and press firmly with the back of a spoon or fingertips. Leave this in the refrigerator while the other layers are getting ready.
3. Chop strawberries roughly and puree it with sugar. Heat the puree in a pan until a single boil, I did that though that step is purely optional. Set aside. In a mixing bowl, mix hung curd and cream well.
4. Add strawberry puree(reserve 1/4 cup for the top layer) and mix well. At this point check for sugar and adjust according to your preference. If adding sugar, beat well until sugar is dissolved completely. Set aside. In a pan add water allow it to boil, keep a small heat resistant cup containing china grass(agar agar) with water. Allow it to boil until you see a clear liquid when the china grass is dissolved completely.
5. Now add the china grass water mixture to the hung curd cream mixture, give a quick stir. Fill it up immediately in cups as a second layer reserving little space at the top. Chill it for 4-5 hrs or even overnight for best results. Then add the remaining strawberry puree as a third layer and serve chilled.
If you add china grass with the strawberry sauce(as mentioned in 'my notes') then after pouring the 3rd sauce layer, set it for an hour and serve chilled. Easy yummy no bake version of strawberry cheese is ready.
For those who are like me using china grass for the first time, here is how it looks. I have seen that it comes as powder too but what I got looked like this. I tried to give a swirl pattern after setting it for one hour(it was not set fully) and this was the outcome. So after giving 4 hours of setting time just poured the puree which looked better for pics so chose that :)
- Also if you wish you add in 1/2 tsp of china grass with 2 tsp of water for the 3rd strawberry puree layer. I just wanted saucy so didnt add china grass for the third layer.
- The quantity in each layer is purely your choice. If you like the sauce more then top it up more.I used Marie Arrowroot for the base layer, you can use any digestive biscuits.
- I didnt set it overnight, just gave 4 hours time and it was just fine. But for best results it is recommended to set it overnight.
- Without setting the 2nd mid layer dont pour the strawberry sauce, it will get blended with the 2nd layer.