Lemon Ripple Cheesecake Bars Recipe

I love these. You can remix them a thousand different ways with various flavors of preserves.

Lemon Ripple Cheesecake Bars

Sunday morning I went on my annual pilgrimage to the Fancy Food Show at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. My dad has been taking my sister and I to these types of gourmet food shows since I was a teenager, but the Winter Fancy Food show stands alone, and is the one I look forward to all year. For you techies, it is the E3, CES, or Mac World expo of gourmet foods. I think there may be one bigger in NYC, but I've never been to that one.

Imagine aisle upon aisle of cheeses, chocolates, salsas, jams, teas, waters, candies, cakes, pies, horsdouvres, honeys, chutneys, and wines. There are close to a thousand exhibitors, and over 25,000 people attend the 3-day exposition.

There was quite a bit more excitement than usual on Sunday. I was walking up one of the aisles in the middle of the south hall when a propane cooking stove detonated about four booths ahead of me. The explosion sent a giant fireball high into the rafters, and propelled the stove out into the crowd. We thought everyone was ok -- the chef looked very rattled, but apparently 3 people were sent to the hospital with varying degrees of burns. We thought it was a bit funny that the explosion happened right across from the Harry Potter Jelly Belly booth. We thought for a second it might have been one of their spells gone wrong. As the article mentions, the food show continued.

A few highlights. I got to chat a bit with John Scharffenberger and he gave me a sample of their new milk chocolate, as well as their new 82% extra dark. Both delicious -- bonus points for him being really nice. Stonewall Kitchens were showing off their baking kits that come in really cute collectable tins, I looked like they had some new ones. I was happy to see the Savannah Bee Company booth growing. Ted Dennard and his bees produce gourmet raw honey and raw honey products. He had a display of stunning, tall, sleek bottles of Tupelo honey that everyone was ooo-ing and aaah-ing over -- unfortunately for me it looks like they may be sold out on their site.

In terms of trends...As you can imagine low-carb products were well represented as were kid-targeted cooking mixes and gadgets. You could make a moon out of all cheese samples. I actually had an amazing cheese at one of the Italian distributer booths. I can't remember the Italian name for it, but it translated to "breeze of summer" in English. It was produced an hour outside of Venice towards the Dolomites, was made in barrels, and was covered in a grassy hay. I think it was a mix of cow milk and something else. Best cheese I've had this year. Other trends; still alot of hot sauces, lots of tea drinks, lots of vitamin drinks, lots of gourmet and organic chocolate brands, lots of cute girlie bakery up-and-comers with nice packaging (lots of nicely designed packaging in general at the show). And we saw quite a bit of lemon curd, tasty!

The abundance of lemon curd reminded me of a couple recipes I clipped over the past year. I clipped this Food + Wine recipe last year and have been meaning to try the lemon cheesecake bars -- I think the swirls look beautiful. I also have the Spring 04 issue of Donna Hay magazine, and they have a lemon swirl cheesecake bar recipe, the picture looks just as tasty as the one in Food + Wine. I considered it a sign, went to the store, and loaded up on cream cheese.

I'll just get this out in the open....these little cheesecakes are absolutely delicious and decadent. Impressive to look at as well! The pools of citrus blend into the cheesecake filling beautifully and each bite is an explosion of lemon. You might notice my picture looks more like a tart than a bar. That's because I don't have a 9-inch square non-stick baking dish. I do have lots of little non-stick tart pans though. I'm going to a friends for dinner, and thought the individual tarts looked a little fancier and I saved myself $8 and some shelf space. I'll do bar shapes for the next picnic I go on.

The recipe is easy to follow, and I had all of the ingredients right in my refrigerator (with the exception of the cream cheese). I made the simple crust, made the lemon curd, and then made the cream cheese filling. Assembled it all, baked for 40 minutes and let it cool. Then of course I took a taste. Light but rich, sweet but tangy - very tasty. Great recipe.

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In some of the early entries on this site I didn't request permission to run the recipe I was writing about from the publisher so it won't appear here. The majority of entries on 101 Cookbooks will have the recipes attached, this just happens to be one of the ones that doesn't.

From: Food & Wine (May 2003) Page: 207

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Heidi, So random that I'm checking out your website today - while I wait for you to receive my final revision on the back of the badge. Anyway, lady... I was at the food show last week and had such similar experiences. The tupelo honey guy was AMAZING and I haven't had such amazing, sweet, citrusy honey in, well, forever! Also, it is to funny to meet someone else who grew up in the food business - and who enjoys the food shows with family in the same way. When I was a kid we would go visit food factories instead of going skiing or vacationing during school breaks - this was our family fun and it's so amazing that someone else shares a similar experience. Just wanted to post you a note and tell you how much I enjoyed your story and that I will definitely be checkin' out the rest of your site. Jenn

Jenn White

Heidi, I wish I had known you were there! Me too! Got in with a press pass and had a ball. Lots of good samples and fodder for bloggging of course... Best, Amy


Hi Manda, which books did you sign up for with Good Cook? Just curious. -h


Love the site! :) Your site, along with my boyfriend's recent visit, have gotten me into cooking again. or just for starters, since i've been on my own since last May, and generally haven't cooked that much since. lol. :) I've also re-started collecting of cookbooks. i just joined The Good Cook cookbook club, & most of the starter-books i got were ones you had listed. :) heeh so thank you. :) and those bars look amazing. :D


I too love your site, and come often to see if you've made anything new. The photography is always luscious and you write wonderfully, thank you.


No, I just end up paying it....I used to try to find it on the newsstand, but then I would miss issues and pay as much or more. It is pricey, but I like each issue as much as I like some books that I end up paying $30+ for...so I give it to myself for my birthday each year.


Hi there, Sounds yummy! I read your site all the time, and I adore Donna Hay, have all of her books. I want her magazine desperately, but I can't find it for less than $90US/year for 6 issues. Did you find a good price somewhere? Thanks! Maggie


I love your site and this project. Bookmarked. :-)


Your tart looks scrumptious! And perfect in the tart pan. Impressive catalog of cookbooks over there on the left--keep up that motivation to cook more and buy less. Ha ha. I know the feeling too well--reading through cookbooks is a favorite pasttime of mine, yet I often panic at the thought of what's for dinner. :-)


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