I bought an extra of package of cream cheese and brainstormed mini cheesecakes as a cute idea to use up the 8oz block as well as a some blackberries, raspberries, and graham crackers we had left over from doing this awesome stop motion s'mores video. I used the same base on all of them and then modified for each of the flavors. I liked the blackberry-lime one the best but but Chocolate-Raspberry made with Taza 70% dark was not to be missed. What was great about these cheesecakes is I really just threw in what I had on hand in the the pantry and you can do the same! What kind will you make?
Assorted Mini Cheesecakes (makes 8)
Adapted From: Sweet Pea's Kitchen
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
2 tbsp butter, melted
1.5 tbsp sugar
Prepare 8 cupcake tins with liners. Combine crust ingredients with a fork and spoon 1-2 tablespoons into each cupcake liner, more or less depending on how much crust you like. Press down with either the bottom of a glass or the top of a jar or something that fits the space. Bake at 325 degrees for 5 minutes. Let cool.
8oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
1 large egg, at room temperature
In a bowl, beat the cream cheese until fluffy, then blend in the sugar until smooth. Add the pinch of salt and slowly beat in the egg. Divide base into four small bowls. Flavor to preference. Bake for 22-24 minutes, rotating half-way through. Let cool to room temperature and then transfer to the fridge to chill for 4 hours before serving or decorating.
(2x) Blackberry-Lime: Add 1/2 tsp lime juice, 1 tsp lime zest. Top with blackberry puree, fresh blackberry, and a bit of lime-zest. (2x) Raspberry-Swirl: Add 1/4 tsp vanilla extract to cupcake base. Crush 4-6 Raspberries. Strain seeds out with a fine mesh sieve. Let juice drip on to tops of cheesecake's and swirl with toothpick to create a marble effect.
(2x) Chocolate-Raspberry: Mix 1 tablespoon melted chocolate, 1 tsp of raspberry puree, and 1/4 tsp vanilla extract into cupcake base. After baking, pour more melted chocolate over the cheesecake and spread it evenly. Place one fresh raspberry on top in the center and let cool and harden in the fridge.
(2x) Nutella: Mix 1 tbsp Nutella and 1/4 tsp vanilla extract into cupcake base. When baked, place 3 tbsp Nutella into a zip-lock bag and cut a small hole in the corner. Top with a ribbon of Nutella.
Photos: Zac Wolf Photography