Spread the love this Christmas with homemade jellyhearts! This no-bake recipe is a cinch to make, and you don’t even need an oven.
The recipe I used is from Bing, pretty much the same recipe used across the blogosphere. Do visit her page for a step-by-step pictorial of how to carry out the recipe.
Her recipe makes a large portion though, so you may want to halve the portion, or perhaps make it in several smaller containers, if you don’t have one large dish.
This is the one I made in a smaller dish… the larger dish had some issues which I will address later.
Her recipe has very even layers of biscuit crust, cheese and jelly. But if you don’t like the cheesecake part, you can reduce it according to your preference.
I was pretty happy with the results! This isn’t my first time making it, and each time has been a success, thankfully. I couldn’t get my hands on strawberry jelly this time round, so I settled for cherry flavoured jelly which worked just as well.
Strawberry Jellyhearts Recipe:
For the crust-
300 grams digestive biscuits
150 grams melted butter
For the cheesecake layer-
500 grams cream cheese (placed in room temperature for 2 to 3 hours to soften)
(Andrea’s note: Please buy the cream cheese blocks, not the cream cheese spread, if not your cheesecake layer won’t harden)
1 tablespoon &1/2 gelatin powder
1 cup &1/4 boiling water
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the jelly layer-
160 grams strawberry flavoured jelly
1 cup &1/2 boiling water
1 cup &1/2 cold water
1) Place 150g of butter in a oven proof bowl.
2) Cover the bowl loosely with cling film wrap or use a microwave oven food cover. Microwave for 30 to 40 seconds at high till butter is melted.
3) Dip a brush into the melted butter and butter a large rectangular pan generously. I used a 13 X 10 X 2 inch glass pan.
4) Note: You can line the pan with a large piece baking paper. This will make removal of the jelly hearts from the pan alot easier. And you wouldn’t have to worry about the crust sticking to the base of the pan. If you line the pan with baking paper, butter the baking paper all over as well. For photography purpose, I’ve eliminated the baking paper.
5) Place 300g of digestive biscuits in a food processor. Process till they become fine crumbs. (Andrea’s note: I just placed the digestive biscuits in a large ziploc bag and crushed them with my hands/with a rolling pin –> you can do this too if you don’t have a food processor)
6) Place the crumbs in a large bowl and add the melted butter. Stir well to combine.
7) Place the biscuits-butter mixture in the pan. Using a potato masher or a large glass with a flat surface, pack the mixture tightly into the pan.
8) Once the crust is made, place the pan in the fridge and chill until ready to use.
9) Add 1 & 1/2 tablespoons of gelatin powder in a bowl. Add 1 & 1/4 cups of boiling water to the gelatin powder. Stir well till all the gelatin has dissolved. Set aside to cool.
10) Place 500g of cream cheese in a large mixing bowl. Add 2/3 cups of sugar.
11) Using an electric whisk, combine the cheese and sugar. The cream cheese must be soft otherwise it will be very hard to mix here. Whisk till the mixture is light and fluffy.
12) Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract to the cream cheese mixture.
13) Add the cooled gelatin mixture a little at a time. Whisk well to combine.
14) The finished mixture should be a runny smooth liquid. Like a milkshake. If there are lumps, run the mixture through a sieve.
15) Remove the pan from the fridge. Using a fork, prick holes all over the biscuit base.
16) Pour the cream cheese mixture on to the biscuit base.
17) Let the mixture rest in room temperature for about 10 minutes.
18) In the meantime, cut the strawberries. Cut them first in half. Look for the thicker side and cut lengthwise across it so that each strawberry heart is thick. Then at the top of the strawberries, slice off the white tops with the leaves and cut a deep V in the centre.
19) Press each strawberry half into the cream cheese mixture. Let the strawberry sink in gently. Space the strawberries 1 inch to 1.5 inches apart. Cover the pan with cling film wrap.
20) Place the pan in the fridge. Chill for at least 4 hours or overnight.
21) Use strawberry jelly powder to make the top layer. Place 160g strawberry jelly powder in a bowl. Add 1 & 1/2 cups of boiling water. Whisk well till jelly powder has dissolved. Add 1 & 1/2 cups of cold water. Mix well.
22) Ensure that the jelly-water mixture has cooled. And pour it over the cream cheese layer. (Andrea’s note: The jelly mixture MUST be cool)
23) Pour just enough jelly to cover the strawberries.
24) Cover with cling film wrap again. Chill for at least 4 hours.
25) Use a sharp knife with a thin blade to cut the jelly hearts. Prepare a large jar of boiling water. Dip the knife into the water. Wipe it off and cut. Repeat that with every cut to get a nice clean cut with no crumbs sticking at the sides.
26) If you lined the pan with baking paper, the crust should not stick to the pan. If you didn’t line with baking paper, set the pan on a hot/warm surface for a few minutes before removing the jelly hearts. The heat will warm the butter at the base and make it easier to remove the jelly hearts.
27) Cut into nice small pieces of jelly hearts cheese cake.
28) Store covered in the fridge.
If you followed her steps, and my tips, you should get a pretty jelly heart like the one above! As I mentioned in the recipe, even if you don’t have a food processor, it’s alright. Hand-crushed biscuits taste so much better, you can taste the love. Ahh, who am I kidding… #cantaffordabrandedfoodprocessor
I bet that caught your eye. First time seeing upsidedown jelly hearts? Well, that’s because I’m the first person to make them. Even if they were by accident.
Don’t worry if you poured the jelly mixture on before it was completely cooled. You’ll see the cream cheese melting and forming white clumps in the jelly. Before you freak out, just put the dish back in the fridge to set. Somehow or another, the jelly ends up at the bottom of the tray, and there you have it! A unique new take on jelly hearts.
Sometimes, mistakes can be hidden successes! Your friends will be so impressed with how you got the jelly layer below the biscuit crust.
Hope you enjoy this recipe!