Thursday, June 16, 2016

Savory Zucchini Cheesecake #BundtBakers

A cheesecake with a difference, this savory zucchini version is perfect sliced up and served on toasted bread or crackers. 

The best part of belonging to groups like Bread Bakers and Bundt Bakers is the challenge of creating a recipe to fit each month’s theme. We have a lot of talented bakers in both groups and sometimes it seems like they are trying to outdo each other when they host! The rule is that the host gets to choose the theme. If you’ve been reading along, you know that just in the last couple of months, we've baked Bundts inspired by the tales of Scheherazade and retro desserts, just to name two creative themes.

This month our host is Padmajha from Seduce Your Tastebuds and she has gone in an unusual direction for baking in a Bundt pan: Savory! I immediately thought of the little savory shrimp cheesecakes I baked a couple of years ago for Sunday Supper and I knew a larger Bundt would be delicious. Since summer is the season of an overload of zucchinis (courgettes to my Australian/British readers), I decided to incorporate them to help those gardeners with the surplus. You are welcome!

Drizzle of olive oil, for oiling the Bundt pan
2 cups or 230g zucchini, unpeeled & grated
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 large eggs
leaves from few sprigs fresh thyme
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup or 35g minced onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 fresh jalapeño, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups or 485g whole milk ricotta cheese
1/2 cup or 50g freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Optional, to garnish:
Zest of one lemon
Thyme leaves

Tip: Use a microplane to zest the lemon onto a paper towel and set it aside early in the process. When it's time to sprinkle the lemon zest on your savory Bundt, it will be quite dry and sprinkle-able. Damp zest tends to clump together. 

Preheat oven to 325°F or 163°C. Drizzle about a teaspoon or so of olive oil in your 10-cup Bundt pan. I used this square one from Nordic Ware. (<affiliate link) The square design makes cutting slices to top bread or crackers much tidier. Use a pastry brush to get the oil in all the little corners and crevices of your chosen pan.

In a colander, toss the grated zucchini with the salt and set it aside to drain either in the sink or with a bowl underneath. It’s amazing how much liquid comes out.

Whisk your eggs with the thyme leaves and a good sprinkling of freshly ground black pepper in a large bowl.

Add in the onion, garlic and jalapeño and mix again.

Squeeze the grated zucchini to get out as much liquid as you possible can, then add it to the bowl.

Add the lemon juice and the flour and mix well.

Now fold in the ricotta and the Parmesan. Give the whole thing another good few grinds of black pepper. Can you tell I am a fan?

Spoon the cheese mixture into the pan and smooth out the top.

Bake in your preheated oven for 35-40 minutes or until the cheesecake is still just set. It will set more as it cools.

Leave it on a wire rack for about half an hour or until it looks fairly firm. Now here’s the tricky bit. You need to put your serving plate on top of the pan and turn the whole thing over in one swift but steady movement. You do not want one side of the cheesecake to fall out before the other. I ran a toothpick around the edges and tipped mine from side to side to loosen it first. (Don’t use a knife or you might mar the non-stick finish of a Nordic Ware pan.)

Mix your thyme leaves and lemon zest together and sprinkle them both on the cheesecake.

Serve with sliced baguette or crackers. And perhaps a celebratory beverage.


Many thanks this month to our host, Padmajha. Making a savory Bundt was a great challenge! Many thanks also to Renee of Magnolia Days who made sure this all ran smoothly.

Check out all the wonderful ways my fellow Bundt Bakers met the challenge.


#BundtBakers is a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme.  Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on the Bundt Bakers home page.


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