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Sunday, December 4, 2011

Raspberry Amaretto Mini Cheesecakes


Luscious, gorgeous and oh, so good!
These were so fun to make and so easy, really.  Trust me, I don't do complicated on a whim.  I made these, literally, on a whim one Sunday afternoon.  I had all the ingredients, some time on my hands, and VIOLA'!  These Raspberry Amaretto Mini Cheesecakes are adapted (mildly) from The Boozy Baker by Lucy Baker.  So far everything I've made and sampled from Lucy's cookbook has been just great.  Easy recipes and great results. 

I'm sharing this recipe over at Cake of the Week for this month's Baking with Spirit Challenge, Raspberry Liqueur!  Check out Janine's latest creation: Honey Cupcakes with Raspberry Liqueur Icing...You'll love these!!



The play-by-play...Stick with me, it's easier than you think!

Make the puree using this method from my post for Raspberry Liqueur Cupcakes, then add a few fresh raspberries and mash up.  Set aside.

Mix the graham cracker crust ingredients and press into the cupcake liners.  I used my 20 yr old, wine stopper since it recently lost it's fancy enameled top.  Bake them and let them cool while you make the filling.


Mix up the filling...Easy!

Pour the cheesecake filling into the baked cups.  I used a #24 scoop for this one and it seemed to be the right amount.
Drop in a teaspoon of the raspberry puree mixture.
Swirl a bit with a toothpick, not too much.

Set the pan in a roasting pan.  Have hot water available.  I use my coffee carafe because I wanted to control the water.  I'd place the pan in the oven and add the hot water.  And, actually, I didn't do this and had sloshing and water in a few cups.  No worries = water rescue was a success!
 
Okay, so I also used a turkey baster to add the last bit of water
to the pan to minimize slosh factor. 
Also, I had enough left over for these little cups. 
YUMMY as well and an extra treat for the baker!

Bake until just set.  A little wiggle is okay as these will keep cooking.  Too long and they will be dry.  Extricate that pan from its watery home and let these cool for 2 hours before placing them in the fridge to cool completely.
Top each with a fresh raspberry and you're good to go!
Raspberry Amaretto Mini Cheesecakes
Adapted from The Boozy Baker by Lucy Baker
Makes about 15 mini cakes

For the crust:
1 ¼ cup finely ground graham cracker crumbs (I use these…Easy)
¼ cup sugar
5 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

For the filling:
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese (I use the full fat), at room temp
¾ cup sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp vanilla extract (next time, vanilla bean paste)
¼ cup Amaretto (almond liqueur)
2 large eggs
¼ cup sour cream
Raspberry puree (recipe follows)
15 juicy raspberries for the topping-reserve

For the raspberry puree (make first and set aside)
16 oz fresh raspberries (you could probably use frozen)
1/3 to ½ cup sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
4 tbsp Frambroise (raspberry liqueur)

To make the raspberry puree, see my post for the instructions here.

Instructions
Preheat oven at 350 F.  Line 12 cup muffin pan with paper liners (I used two liners); you’ll have enough extra filling to make 3 more, so I’d line the other muffin tin with 3 more liners.  

To make the crust, in a small bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter.  Mix well with a fork.  Drop 1 ½ to 2 tbsp into each cup.  Make sure you have enough for all 15.  Gently press and pack down the mixture with your fingers (or small flat surface, see above).  Bake for 5 minutes and remove from pan to cool while you make the filling.  Leave the oven on!

To make the filling, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese, sugar and cornstarch until smooth.  Add the vanilla extract, Amaretto, eggs and sour cream.  Beat until smooth and set aside.

To assemble, fill the muffin cups almost full with the cream cheese mixture (#24 scoop makes EASY work of this).  Leave a bit of room so that you can drop generous teaspoons of raspberry puree on top.  With a toothpick create a swirly pattern with the puree. 

Place the muffin pan in a large shallow roasting pan.  Fill with enough hot water to come up 1 inch, which is about to the rim.  Bake 35 to 40 minutes until the cakes are puffy and just set in the middle.  Be careful not to over bake or they will be dry as they are minis. 

When done, removed muffin pan from the water bath and cool, still in the muffin pan, for 2 hours.  Transfer the cakes to the refrigerator overnight or at least 4 hours.  Top each cake with a fresh raspberry and enjoy!
A little bit of Italy...Manga!

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5 comments:

  1. Oh my! These look and sound amazingly delicious! :)
    -Mel

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  2. Ellen~These look so festive and would be the perfect dessert at a holiday dinner party. I'm hooked on mini desserts! XOXO

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  3. Wow! They look yummy! I'm making them tonight!

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  4. These are so pretty, perfect for a holiday dessert.

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  5. These were really fun...And, I was surprised yesterday when I discovered that Sac Bee online used this photo as their lead pic in its holiday desserts recipe/photo gallery. :) Not bad for my little point and shoot.

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