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Hawaiian Passion Cheesecake

Contributed by: Chris WebAdmin. of

Put Some Passion Into Summer Entertaining - What comes to mind when you think of summer bliss? Perhaps it's an image of scenic Hawaii. With its pristine beaches, lush green foliage, beautiful volcanoes and exotic fragrant flowers, Hawaii is a true island paradise.

Even if you're unable to escape to an island bungalow, you can still recreate some of the magic of a Hawaiian retreat at home by borrowing ideas from the island's culture, especially its tropical culinary style. Passion fruit evokes visions of a tropical paradise, and incorporating this fruit into your summer gatherings will turn any special event into an impromptu vacation.

With "Hawaiian Passion Cheesecake" you match a dessert favorite with the exotic taste of the tropics.

If you are unfamiliar with the passion fruit, it's a fragrant, complex, sweet with just a touch of tartness, almost floral-flavored fruit, which can be eaten fresh or pureed for juice. It lends itself well to sauces, desserts and ice cream.


  • Syrup

    • 56 passion fruits
    • 1 cup light corn syrup
    • 3 tablespoons Myer's dark rum

  • Cake

    • 6 large eggs, separated
    • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
    • 11/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 11/4 cups all-purpose flour

  • Filling

    • 1 pound cream cheese
    • 3/4 cup sugar plus 2 tablespoons
    • 3/4 cup hot water
    • 1 package unflavored gelatin
    • 3 cups heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks
    • 1/2 cup passion fruit puree (reserved from syrup)


Place a nonreactive strainer over a medium bowl. Cut open the passion fruits and scoop the pulp out into the strainer. Push the fruit through the strainer; discard the seeds. Continue until you have 2 cups of pulp.

In a nonreactive saucepan over medium heat, bring the puree to a simmer. Reduce heat and simmer until reduced by 50 percent. Remove from the heat and cool. Reserve 1/2 cup and transfer to a nonreactive container. Cover and refrigerate.

Whisk 1/2 cup passion fruit puree, corn syrup, and rum in a nonreactive bowl until smooth. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 300 F. Butter and flour a 10-inch cake pan.

In a bowl, combine the egg yolks and 1/2 cup sugar and, using an electric mixer, beat until light yellow in color and double in volume.

In a nonreactive pan over medium heat, combine the remaining sugar, egg whites and cream of tartar. Whisk together until the sugar melts; do not allow the egg whites to set. Remove from heat and, with an electric mixer, beat until soft peaks form.

Fold the egg whites into the egg yolks; add vanilla and stir. Sift the flour (1/4 cup at a time) over the mixture and gently fold in.

Pour the batter into the pan and bake 20 to 30 minutes, or until the cake is set and begins to pull away from the sides of the pan. When a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean, remove the cake from the oven and cool on a rack before unmolding.

Combine the cream cheese and 3/4 cup sugar and beat with an electric mixer until smooth. Mix the hot water and gelatin together, stirring until the gelatin is melted. Fold the gelatin into the cream cheese mix. Gently fold in the whipped cream. Fold in the reserved passion fruit pure, making sure that it is evenly distributed. Cool the filling in the refrigerator while you do the next step.

Remove the cake from the pan. Halve the cake horizontally and brush some syrup on the bottom layer, cover with one-half of the filling. Replace the top layer of the cake and brush with syrup. Spread the remaining filling on top and sides. Chill.

Serve each slice chilled with whipped cream and syrup on top.



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