Thursday, June 7, 2007
Mini Chocolate Cheesecakes
To celebrate the final week of this year's PLTI class, I made a special treat: Mini Chocolate Cheesecakes with raspberry-flavored chips. (Yes, the original Nestlé recipe calls for mint-swirled chips. Whatever.) The recipe is courtesy of Nestlé, and they seemed to be a hit with the class. It was kind of funny talking to a couple of the people from this year's class. They made some of the same comments that we had last year at the end of PLTI, including "I'm not sure what I'm going to do with my Thursday nights now." I'm going to back that up a day and say I don't know what I'll do with Wednesdays now that I won't have a specific event to bake for.
Baking for PLTI has been a pleasure. These folks have been an appreciative, enthusiastic audience, and it's been nice for me to feel like I've been a small part of helping them to enjoy this program.
Eagle-eyed readers might notice that the mini-cheesecake in the photo is not made with raspberry-swirled chips. In fact, the mini-cheesecakes were such a hit that I made a second double batch, this time using peanut-butter swirled chips. I also added about 1/4 cup of creamy peanut butter to the cheesecake batter, for a chocolate-peanut butter bit of excitement. The PB made the batter slightly thicker, but the end result was a tasty cheesecake.
If you don't want to click through, here's the cheesecake recipe:
Swirled Chocolate Mint Mini Cheesecakes
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
3 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
1 1/4 cups (10-oz. pkg.) Nestlé Toll House Swirled Semi-Sweet Chocolate & Mint Morsels, divided
12 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 large egg
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat oven to 300°F. Place 12 2-inch-foil muffin cups on baking sheet.
Combine crumbs, 2 tablespoons sugar and butter in small bowl. Press rounded tablespoon of mixture onto bottom of each muffin cup. Sprinkle 3/4 cup morsels over crumb mixtures.
Beat remaining 1/2 cup sugar, cream cheese, egg, cocoa and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until smooth. Spoon about 1/4 cup filling into each bake cup. Sprinkle with remaining morsels.
Bake for 18 to 22 minutes or until just set. Remove from oven to wire rack. Cool completely. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.