This tiered cheesecake is easier to make than it appears, but even more delicious than it looks, although you do need to give it enough time to bake and then chill to set the filling.

I was asked to bring a cheesecake to a friend's house this year for Easter.  My friend even texted me a raspberry cheese cake recipe she found on for 'inspiration'.

But I couldn't find any fresh raspberries, so I needed to make some substitutions. The recipe I am sharing here is the result of a bit of tweaking of that original recipe.

My inspiration for the cheesecake I ended up making was this patch of violets growing in among some chocolate mint in my herb garden, as well as the fresh blackberries from our berry patch.

I used the violets, blackberries and mint for garnish.  It turned out fairly light  (as cheesecakes go) and the flavor was spot on.

I hope you'll be inspired to try making one soon.

(scroll down for printable recipe)

Blackberry White Chocolate Tiered Cheesecake

1 (12.8 oz) package shortbread cookies
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

4 8-ounce packages of cream cheese, room temperature
1 Cup sugar
2 Tablespoons flour
4 large eggs
2 Tablespoons heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or pure vanilla extract in an equal amount)

6 ounces Ghirardelli white chocolate chips
1/2 Cup blackberry jam
1/2 teaspoon blackberry extract (optional)
Fresh blackberries, violets and mint leaves for garnish

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Process shortbread cookies and butter in a food processor until crumbed. Press into the bottom and partway up sides of a 9-inch springform pan.  Bake crust for 10 minutes, remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.

Using a stand mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth and fluffy.  Beat in flour, then eggs, one at a time, heavy cream and vanilla bean paste.

(You can substitute vanilla extract in an equal amount, but the paste will give you the nice flecks and a superior vanilla taste, so I highly recommend buying some paste. I hardly ever use extract anymore when I bake.)

Separate 2-1/4 Cups of the batter into a medium bowl and stir in white chocolate chips.  Stir the blackberry jam and blackberry extract into the remaining batter.

Pour the blackberry batter into the prepared crust.  Fill a cake pan with water and place on the bottom rack of the oven, then place the cheesecake on the middle rack.

Bake for one hour, or until edges begin to puff. and center is almost set.  Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.

Spoon the white chocolate batter on top of the blackberry layer. Smooth the top. Return to the oven and bake until set, about 30 minutes.

Refrigerate cheesecake, uncovered, at least 4 hours and up to two days (cover after four hours if storing longer).

Just before serving, run a sharp knife around the edge to loosen and release the side of the springform pan.  Garnish the cheesecake with mint leaves, violets and fresh blackberries.

©2012 by Fresh Eggs Daily, Inc. and updated in 2024 for Coop to Kitchen. All rights reserved.