To Make Lemon Cheesecakes

The word cheesecake conjures up a lot of types and tastes. Those familiar with chess pies will find its mate with these lemony filled, flaky crust delights.

18th Century

Take the peel of two large lemons, boil it very tender; then pound it well in a mortar, with a quarter of a pound or more of loaf-sugar, the yolks of six eggs, and half a pound of fresh butter, and a little curd beat fine; pound and mix all together, lay a puff-paste in your patty-pans, fill them half full, and bake them. Orange cheesecakes are done the same way, only you boil the peel in two or three waters, to take out the bitterness.

Hannah Glasse, “The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy“ 1796.

21st Century

  • 2 large lemons
  • 4 oz. white sugar
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 2 sticks of butter, melted
  • 4oz. of cream cheese
  • Puff pastry (store bought or home-made)


  1. Peel the lemons avoiding the white part (or pith) as much as possible.
  2. Boil the peels in water until soft.
  3. Beat them in a food processer until mushy.
  4. Add the sugar, yolks of eggs and melted butter and blend thoroughly.
  5. Blend in the cream cheese until all is smooth.
  6. Place the puff pastry into several tin molds like little pies.
  7. Spoon the mixture into the pastry shells about half-way up.
  8. Bake these in a 375° oven for approximately 20 to 25 minutes or until tops are golden and firm like baked custards.


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10 Responses to “To Make Lemon Cheesecakes”

  1. March 14th, 2014

    Kathryn says:

    Very easy recipe that turned out pretty well. Next time more lemon!

  2. November 11th, 2014

    Clare says:

    can’t wait to make!

  3. June 29th, 2015

    Carolyn Randall says:

    Easy to make, added more lemon extract to make up for not adding enough lemon peel. Everyone loved them!

  4. January 7th, 2016

    Mr. White says:

    This is a great website and video. I use it every year to teach my students about functional texts and life during the colonial times. Thank you!

  5. January 7th, 2016

    egypt says:

    why did they make their whisk out of sticks

  6. January 7th, 2016

    Riana says:

    Totally will make this

  7. January 7th, 2016

    Gabriella says:

    Very good a Delicious and fun to Make

  8. January 8th, 2016

    Josh Rose says:

    Is there actually any cheese in it?

  9. January 30th, 2017

    Mariaelena says:

    How many little cheesecakes does this recipe make?

  10. April 9th, 2017

    Annie Hoffman says:

    I am looking for VERY old recipe for chess pie that called for corn meal, a tad bit of flour, 6 to 8 eggs, rich cream,
    sugar, vanilla, brandy or both….. Yum… Some added lemon.
    Originally from Tennessee, Andy Jackson era ’tis said. Annie

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