The recipe for this cheesecake comes from an old file of my mother’s, she notes that the inspiration came from a cookery demonstration she went to on 9 November 1988. Those were the days when Angel Delight and Instant Whip still reigned, unchallenged, in larders. There’s something ragingly pop-art, but at the same time curiously comforting, about this recipe.

There are two versions. One is a dark, fruits of the forest purple and red affair: the other is citrus, bright-tasting and orange. Both are a dead cinch.

The base tends to go soggy quite quickly so the one snag about this recipe is that it doesn’t keep for too long.

You’ll need an 18 cm/7” loose-bottom cake tin.


For Dan Hargreaves’ useful cheats’ cheesecake recipe follow this link.


Recipe for Pop-art Period Cheats’ Cheesecake


For about ten


  • 100g/3.5 oz butter
  • 200g/7 oz plain digestive biscuits – OR ginger biscuits go well in the citrus version
  • 70g/2.5 oz/½ a packet of jelly cubes – blackcurrant flavour – OR orange flavour
  • 180g/6 oz Philadelphia cream cheese
  • 2 tbsp runny honey – orange blossom honey is especially good for the citrus version
  • 80ml/⅓ cup cassis OR juice and zest of one medium orange
  • 160ml/⅔ cup double cream
  • Garnish – five or six sliced, hulled strawberries and a little fresh chopped mint; or a sliced tangerine or small orange – possibly soaked in Grand Marnier


  1. Make up the jelly as per the instructions on the packet, chill in the fridge
  2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan, then take off the heat.
  3. Crush the biscuits in a freezer bag, bashing with a rolling pin, add to the butter
  4. Push the biscuits down onto the base of the cake tin and chill
  5. In a medium mixing bowl put the lightly set jelly and the cassis or juice and zest of the orange
  6. Add the cream cheese and the honey, and, using an electric whisk, mix all together
  7. Whip the cream until floppy and fold in
  8. Chill in the fridge until set – a couple of hours


cheats cheesecake recipe

This version is the forest purple and red affair.