This is baby shower recipe #2! I thought twice about sharing this recipe with you guys, not because it wasn't tasty, but because I had a few technical difficulties with it. But I had a few requests from guests as the shower to "please post it on your blog" so here it is. There is nothing majorly wrong with it, I'm just a little OCD and was bothered by it's appearance. You see, my cheesecakes sunk in the middle. Some of them weren't so bad, while others had major craters in them and were just plain ugly. I didn't have the heart to serve those to my guests, so we ate those at home and served the better looking ones at the shower.
This recipe comes off the box of my mini cheesecake pan I got from Williams-Sonoma Outlet last year. They were originally $32 each, but were on sale for $14.99, then were marked down another 50%. So I got two pans for half the price of one- score! I've been waiting for just the right occasion to use them, and my baby shower just happened to be it. Of course, you don't really need a special occasion to enjoy mini cheesecakes.
One of my other issues with this recipe was that it made way more than the recipe stated. Normally that's not an issue, but when you have a specialty pan and way too much batter, how are you supposed to bake them? The recipe was supposed to make 12 cheesecakes, but I could have easily gotten 18 out of them. Unfortunately and fortunately, I doubled the recipe. One batch came out fairly decent, the other sunk horribly and the remaining batter got turned into cookies and cream cheesecakes with a whole Oreo acting as the crust. I made those in cupcake liners, which was far easier than using the pan, only not as pretty. It turned out to be a good thing there was extra batter though, because in the end I still had a substantial amount of cheesecakes to serve at the shower.
As I've mentioned, oh I don't know about 500 times already, my cheesecakes sunk in the middle. Note To Self: I think a way to combat the "souffle" action of the cheesecakes would be to not overbeat the batter and to bake them at a lower temperature for longer. To make up for this, I decided to dollop a little lemon curd in the center and top with fresh berries. No one was the wiser and the little divot actually created a little cup to hold all the toppings in. The Oreo ones were topped with a little sweetened whipped cream. The ones topped with berries disappeared rather quickly so I didn't get to taste those, but the cookies and cream version was creamy and tasty. The sunken ones we had at home were eaten plain, but would have been great with a little pie filling. I also turned a few stragglers into a cheesecake milkshake. Yes, it was good!
Mini Cheesecakes adapted from Williams-Sonoma
- 1 cup chocolate cookie, vanilla wafer or graham cracker crumbs
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- pinch salt
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 16 ounces cream cheese
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup sugar
- pinch salt
Have all ingredients at room temperature. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat cups of 12-cup mini cheesecake pan* with nonstick cooking spray.
To make crusts: In a small bowl, stir together the cookie crumbs, sugar and salt. Add the melted butter and stir until combined. Divide the mixture among the cups and, using your fingertips, press it evenly into the bottom. Bake until the crusts are set, about 10 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely. Reduce the heat to 300’.
To make the filling: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the cream cheese on low speed until smooth, 2 to 3 minutes. Increase the speed to medium-low and add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the cream and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute. Add the sugar and salt and beat until incorporated, about 2 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Pour the batter into the crusts, dividing it evenly among the cups. Bake until the cheesecakes are set, about 20 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before unmolding.
To unmold, insert the dowel into the hole in the bottom of each cup. Gently push up to remove the cheesecake from the cup. Use a small spatula or butter knife to remove the cake from the metal bottom. If the cheesecakes are sticking to the pan, gently run a toothpick around each cheesecake to loosen it before pushing it out of the cup. Makes 12 mini cheesecakes.
NOTE: This recipe makes more than it states. It should make 12 mini cheesecakes, but I got about 18. So plan accordingly.
*If you want to make these but don't have a mini cheesecake pan, line a standard size muffin tin with paper liners. Proceed with recipe as written above, but bake for 30 minutes or until set. Allow cheesecakes to cool completely in the pan before refrigerating for at least 2 hours or overnight. Served chilled or at room temperature. Makes 12-18 mini cheesecakes.
For Oreo Cheesecakes: Line a standard size muffin tin with paper liners. Place a whole Oreo cookie on the bottom to act as the crust. Pour cheesecake batter over the top of the cookie. Top each (unbaked) cheesecake with about a half teaspoon of crushed cookie crumbs. Bake for 30 minutes or until set. Allow cheesecakes to cool completely in the pan before refrigerating for at least 2 hours or overnight. Served chilled or at room temperature. Makes 12-18 mini cheesecakes.