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Cooking with Kerith: Petite Cheesecakes

I adore dessert. In fact- I may have the largest sweet tooth ever. It’s kind of embarrassing.

But my sister had a birthday party recently and she had the coolest theme to it: “A Dessert Party.”

Everyone in the neighborhood brought some form of dessert- but I was seriously impressed with her idea. And I was seriously excited.

Now if there is one dish I have managed to perfect- it’s petite cheesecakes. It’s the one item I have done enough times that I KNOW I can make it in my sleep. For this recipe I doubled it- since one muffin pan only makes 12 cheesecakes and I wanted to mess with two different crusts.


So first order of business you will need:

(For ONE muffin pan)

For the filling:

  • 1/2 cup Sour Cream
  • 2 8 oz. blocks of full fat cream cheese (Plain) (Room temp.)
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 2/3 cup  White Sugar
  • 2 Large Eggs (Room temp.)
  • 1/8 tsp. Salt

For the Crust:

  • 1 cup crushed Nilla Wafers/ Ginger Snaps/ Biscuit of Choice
  • 1 tbsp. granulated white sugar
  • 4 tbps. melted butter

Additionally:

  • Parchment Paper

Place all your ingredients in an easy to see location.

Now first you will measure out 1 cup of Nilla Wafers and One cup of Ginger Snaps. These are your crusts. You will probably throw in 5-7 cookies extra so that it makes a cup of crumbs. Place the items each in a ziploc bag- so ginger snaps in one bag and Nilla wafers in the other. And then beat them. Roll them. Crush them. You need FLAT and broken crumb like cookies that look like this:

Next step is to take your room temperature cream cheese and place it in your handy dandy Kitchen Aid Mixer and let it mix on low. Like this:

Then you add in your sugar and salt until it looks like creamy goodness.

While you are busy mixing the cream cheese and sugar (seriously leave it on low for a while) you will be busying yourself slicing parchment paper into 12 strips. Or in this case 24.  No larger than an inch in width.

Then you spray the pans with nonstick and place the parchment paper in like that. This is how you will magically lift your cheesecakes out of the muffin pan.

Now you head back to the mixer and add in the eggs- one at a time. Until well combined. Then you scrape down the sides and toss in the sour cream and vanilla extract- and you once again let it spend a few minutes mixing on low. Sot hat it goes from picture 1 to picture 2.

While it is mixing into heavenly tasting goodness, you are going to melt your butter and take your tablespoon on white sugar and combine it with your cookie crumbs to make an amazingly tasty crust crumb mixture.

This is what you will press  into the bottom of the muffin pan. Roughly 3/4 of a tablespoon per muffin slot. Also- make sure it’s not piled too high- you have cheesecake mixture to pour on top people!

You then pour one heaped tablespoon of cheesecake filling into each muffin tin. For some reason I had a ton of filling left over- so I ended up pouring it into a graham cracker pie crust as well.

Then you bake at 300(F) for 18-22 minutes. I find 20 to be the golden number.

And they come out looking like this:

All petite and delicious and perfect to have just one!

The recipe that I originally found said not to add lemon zest- the link to the current recipe on Joy of Baking says to add Lemon Zest. I disagree. These are WINNING cheesecakes.
I have made them for bridal showers, parties, weddings, etc. Do not mess with them. Ignore the lemon zest.

And enjoy.

-Kerith

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