Be warned, this Salted Caramel Popcorn Cheesecake is seriously moreish, it is irresistible and one piece will never be enough. Cream, butter, sugar, salt and oodles of popcorn, what is not to like.
The original recipe came from Olive magazine and once tried in our house it has become a family favourite. This recipe is slightly easier than the original and I use Skyr (Icelandic low-fat yoghurt) which helps stop the cake being too sweet. If you cannot find Skyr, do not worry, thick plain yoghurt also works well.
- 30g unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1 tsp semi-skimmed milk
- 160ml double / heavy cream
- 145g light Muscovado sugar
- 1 tsp Maldon sea salt _ Kosher salt
- For the Cheesecake:
- 225g Digestive biscuits (crushed)
- Generous pinch Maldon salt / Kosher Salt
- 110g unsalted butter, melted, plus a little extra for greasing
- 500g Mascarpone cheese
- 100g Skyr (Icelandic low-fat yogurt) or thick natural yogurt
- 75g icing / fine sugar
- 100ml double/heavy cream
- For the Decoration:
- 55g salted popcorn**
Line both the sides and base of a 20cm diameter springform cake tin with greaseproof paper.
Place the digestive crumbs into a mixing bowl, add a small handful of popcorn and the salt. Pour over the warm melted butter and mix thoroughly. Tip the mixture into the cake tin and using the back of a tablespoon, gently press to create an even, compact base for your cheesecake. Once evenly spread place into the refrigerator to chill.
Melt the butter with the milk, cream sugar and salt in a small saucepan over a gentle heat, stir continuously until they are melted together. Raise the temperature and bring to a gentle boil. Once boiling, lower the heat again and simmer for about 10 minutes to create a glossy sauce. Put to one side to cool during which time the sauce will start to thicken.
Beat the cheese, yoghurt and icing sugar together in a stand mixer (or use a hand whisk) and once well combined add the cream and continue to beat to create a thick glossy sauce but do not over whip. Take the cooled sauce, and if it has thickened too much when cooled, warm slightly, so the sauce is runny once again. Gently fold half of the sauce through the cheesecake filling to create a lovely rippled effect. Taste and add more sauce if you feel you want a more caramel flavor. Pour the filling over the set cheesecake base and smooth the mixture out using the back of a tablespoon or a small palette knife. Cover with a proper wrapping of clingfilm and chill in the refrigerator for at least a couple of hours. The cheesecake is ready when the filling is firm and set.
Take the cheesecake from the tin and remove the greaseproof paper. Place onto a cake stand or plate. Pile the remaining popcorn on the top, pressing the first layer slightly into the cake to create a firm base. Once the popcorn is piled high, warm the remaining sauce and drizzle over the popcorn allowing the sauce to run down the sides.
The cake us best eaten on the day it is made, it does not keep well as the popcorn will begin to go soft after a few hours though I doubt there will be any leftovers, the cake is simply too delicious to keep.