Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Tasty Tuesday - Easy Peasy Cheesecake!

Hey, readers! I hope you had a fantabulous Labor Day Weekend (for those of you in the States) or a fantabulous, normal weekend (for those of you outside the US)! We had a ton of downtime but now we're all (especially bebe) ready to get back on schedule. For her, that's school. For the adults, its work.

And before I get to work, I thought I'd share a fab, simple and sweet recipe with you - for mini-cheesecakes! The perfect reward after a hard day of work - the right size to appease your sweet tooth but not so big you need to run 5 miles to make up for it. Okay, here goes!

Ingredients:

1 cup of smashed graham cracker crumbs (buy the crumbs or just toss a packaged of crackers in a plastic bag and use your rolling pin to crumble)
3/4 cup plus 2 TBS sugar, divided
3 TBS melted butter
3 pkg Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened
1 tsp vanilla
3 eggs
1 cup whipping cream
**Toppings - lemon zest + blueberries, strawberries, cherries, a mixture...go to town!
**18 cupcake wrappers

Preparation:
Heat your oven to 325. Mix the graham cracker crumbs, 2 TBS sugar and butter together; press into the bottoms of paper lined muffin pan cups. Next, beat the cream cheese, remaining sugar and vanilla until it's well blended. Then, add eggs and mix on low until well blended. Pour this over the crumb lined cups. Bake for 25 - 30 minutes, until the center is nearly set and then set out to cool. Let it cool completely. Place in the fridge for at least two hours. Once cooled, beat the whipping cream until stiff peaks form and then spread over the cheesecakes. Top with whatever toppings and serve.

**Note from Kristi: this makes 18 mini-cheesecakes. But who needs to eat 18 cheesecakes all at once, right? So, I like to freeze them once they're made - I place them in an oblong tupperware container and stack, putting wax paper between the layers. They're perfect an afternoon snack. To thaw, just set them out on the counter for 20 or so minutes and badda-bing, top with the lemon zest and the fruit of your choice and enjoy!

Okay, your turn: what's your favorite afternoon snack?