When I first dipped my toe into the world of fine dining, Capital Grille was my jam. One of my baby sitters told me she liked it there, so on a late summer daddy-daughter day before I headed into middle school, dad and I poked in ourselves when at the mall.
I think he took one look at the menu and the prices and steered me toward the door. It’s a funny and not necessarily bad memory, even if I kind of wish we’d gone in, as that probably would have made a good memory too.
About a year later, a guy dad worked with invited my parents and me to dinner at Capital Grille with him and his wife. I can’t tell you how much I loved that night, though the fact I am smiling right now just thinking about it might give you an idea.
The couple was so kind, we actually are still in touch a bit, and the experience was exceptional with the food and service. I felt so special. In particular that night I remember liking creamed spinach and butternut squash like I never had before or have since. I also had my very first taste of crème brulee – sublime.
After that, the flood gates opened and I went through a phase of eating at Capital Grille all. the. time. To celebrate all. the. things.
There are quite a few items that stand out in my mind, almost none of which are still on the menu 🙁 But the cheesecake might most of all. It’s also not on the menu, at least not in the form I knew and loved. It was a thick slice cut from what I must assume was a rather large whole. It had a crust that maybe wasn’t a pie crust, but definitely wasn’t a graham cracker crust. The inside was impossibly fluffy and creamy and not too tangy. And it was served with a strawberry sauce.
Strawberries aren’t even my favorite fruit, not even close, but I devoured that thing every time, and I couldn’t imagine a way to make it better.
And then they went and changed it to individual cheesecakes with none of the panache or flavor. Blah.
I actually very very rarely make cheesecake because it doesn’t turn out to be anything remotely like that one I hold all others to. But I had some cream cheese that needed to be used and I wanted to be creative, so I whipped up this Basque Cheesecake after seeing Tieghan’s recipe on Half Baked Harvest and hearing tons of buzz about this creamy cheesecake.
I did change it up a little by swapping out her puff pastry crust for my grain free pie crust and the blueberries for cherries because cherry season. Although I like the way the blueberries look better and I would honestly use them next time.
Other than that, I wouldn’t change a thing. This cheesecake might not be Capital Grille’s, but it is so creamy and not too tangy and the closest I have ever come to that blast from my past.Print
Grain free cheesecake with a pie crust base, tons of fresh cherries, and a sublimely creamy filling.
1 ½ cups almond flour
½ cup tapioca flour
2 tablespoons coconut flour
1 tablespoon coconut sugar
6 tablespoons coconut oil, room temperature
2 tablespoons olive oil
2–4 tablespoons cold water
2 8 ounce packages cream cheese
1/3 cup maple sugar
3 large eggs
¾ cup heavy cream, plus a little more if necessary
2 teaspoons vanilla bean powder
2 tablespoons coconut flour
1 tablespoon tapioca starch
2 cups fresh pitted cherries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, 325 degrees F convection. Make the crust. In a large bowl, stir together flours, sugar, and oils until the dough starts to come together. Using hands or a fork, mix in the cold water until the dough comes together. Press into a deep dish 9 inch pie pan (this is my favorite!) and bake about 15 minutes until beginning to brown. Allow to cool while you make the filling.
For the filling beat the cream cheese and sugar using a hand or stand mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then slowly drizzle in the cream while continuing to beat. Finally beat in the vanilla, coconut, and tapioca. Pour into the mostly cooled crust and top with the cherries. Bake about an hour until golden brown and set around the edges. The center must still be jiggly or the cake will be overbaked. If at anytime the cake gets too brown while baking, tent it with foil.
Cool completely before serving at room temperature or chilled. Cake may be stored in the refrigerator for up 4 days.
Recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes