About Deborah

Deborah is a wife, mother, grandmother, traveler, bootlegger, and a very poor speller! As Victor Hazan so eloquently puts it, Deborah has chosen Umbria to be the home of her soul. When she can’t be there in body, she spends her free time cooking & reading about Italy. She blogs mostly about food and about trips – past and future – here: Old Shoes New Trip.

About Cindy

Cindy lives in Eagle River, Alaska where her freezer is always full of salmon, halibut & shrimp. Cindy participates in several regular cooking challenges. You can read more about her cooking and life in the last frontier on her blog, Baked Alaska.

About Jan

Jan is a serious home cook who loves to read recipes and then do her own thing. Her focus is ingredient driven comfort food, often with an Italian influence. She is passionate about all things Italian, especially the cuisine & the language. Jan blogs about food and travels (next trip to Italy: May/June of 2012) at: Keep your Feet in the Street.

About Palma

Palma is a Marriage & Family Therapist in Palm Desert, CA. She’s an Italian-American with a passion for cooking, entertaining, & travel to Italy. She’s always planning her next culinary adventure to Italia on her blog, Palmabella's Passions

About Sandi

Sandi is a true Southerner, but a traveler & Italian cook at heart. She lives in Alabama and knows more about fried green tomatoes than fricassees. Her family owned the WhistleStop Café for many years. Sandi also blogs at Whistlestop Cafe Cooking.

About Kim

Kim joins us after being our permanent sub on the Pomodori e Vino project. Kim loves to eat, drink, travel and cook - probably in that order. When she's not here, you can find her organizing and leading food, wine and beer tours in Europe as co-owner and operator of GrapeHops or blogging at What I Really Think or The Amy Foundation.

About Jerry

Jerry is a food obsessed Canadian. He learned to love Italian food as a child while eating the meals prepared by his Napolitano uncle. He learned to cook Italian foods by watching his uncle cook these feasts for the family. This love of Italian food has been honed through serious personal experimentation in eating and cooking. Willing to try most anything once, Jerry isn't so sure about tripe! Jerry also blogs at Jerry's Thoughts, Musings, and Rants!

Our Subs

About Beth

Beth, along with her husband, Mike, is co-owner of two Italian Deli/Markets in St. Louis - Viviano’s Festa Italiano. When not creating yummy new menu items for the deli, she’s the pediatric research lab supervisor at Washington University School of Medicine. Read more out about Viviano’s Festa Italiano.

About Amy

Amy is a teacher in suburban Boston with far too many cookbooks, her Grandmother's meat grinder and canning jars, and a new Wolf stove. She appreciates cuisines from around the world, with a particular fondness for French, Moroccan, Italian, Vietnamese, and Indian cooking. Tweaking her cooking and eating habits resulted long-lasting weight loss and health benefits, proving that living well still tastes good. An old hobby is knitting; and a newer one is canning preserves. Read more from Amy on her blog, Destination Anywhere.

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Plum-Mascarpone Cheesecake with Ginger Crust

By Palma

Italian plums at the market:


I agreed to participate in this cooking challenge two days before leaving for Italy. I got my book and the next day, headed to the airport for two weeks in my favorite place on earth. While visiting several produce markets, I kept thinking, PLUMS! When I returned, I decided to try a cheesecake with an Italian twist topped with plums and a ginger crust.

For the Crust:

1 1/4 c. gingersnap crumbs
5 T. unsalted butter, melted

Mix crumbs and brown sugar. Stir in melted butter, and blend thoroughly with a fork. Press into the bottom of a 9" springform pan and bake at 350 for 10 minutes. Let cool.


2 7-8 oz. containers mascarpone
12 oz. cream cheese
3/4 c. SUGAR
3 eggs

Beat mascarpone and cream cheese (room temp) until smooth. Add sugar and beat well. Add eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition. Add vanilla and lemon juice. Pour into cooled crust. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 and bake another 25 minutes. Turn off oven, and leave cheesecake in the oven for 30 more minutes. Cool on rack, cover and refrigerate until ready for the plum topping.



6 large red plums (cut in half, then pitted and sliced)
1/2 c. red currant jelly
3 slices of fresh ginger

Whisk together orange juice, jelly, brown sugar and ginger in a skillet. Stir over medium heat until sugar and jelly have melted. Increase heat slightly and add sliced plums. When mixture comes to a boil, reduce heat to medium low, cover and cook for 3 minutes. Remove plums with a slotted spoon. Increase heat again and bring liquid to a boil for 6-7 minutes, until reduced by half. Cover and chill plums and glaze until ready to assemble.

Arrange cooled plums on top of cheesecake.


Brush with glaze, slice and serve. Melt glaze to spreadable consistency in microwave for 30 seconds if necessary.



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Comments (8)

Wow, Palma. If I had looked at that picture all by itself I would have known it was you. Your food styling is always so beautiful. This looks lucious!



Your recipe looks like it is heaven sent! The gingersnap crust alone is making me salivate!! (With a tall glass of ice cold milk, I can down an entire box of gingersnaps in one sitting)! I would love to eat a great big slice of this right now!!



OMG! I need a slice of this.

Is this the sexiest looking thing ever...wow! I cannot imagine putting this on a table and not having everyone go "ooohhhh" and "aaahhhh" and fall immediately in love with you. Love the idea of ginger, plums, orange, mascarpone...all that just seems to be made for each other. Beautiful.


It's a beauty, Palma!


Wow, wow and wow! It is hard to say what looks better - the cheesecake or the plums on top...combined it must be pure ambrosia...

Look forward to giving this recipe a go!

Palma-This cheesecake sounds delicious!

I took a 10-day tour of Italy in September and last night I invited a couple of friends over to enjoy some Italian food and see my photos.

I made this cheesecake for our Dolce and it was wonderful - thank you very much!

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 5, 2011 5:00 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Plum Clafouti with Cardamom.

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