Sunday, November 05, 2006

Little Cheesecakes with Strawberry Sauce

From Food Network Kitchens Making It Easy

10 chocolate graham crackers, broken
1/4 C semisweet chocolate chips
3 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 pound cream cheese, softened
3/4 C sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp grated orange zest

1 C frozen strawberries, thawed
2 Tbsp sugar

Microwave cream cheese on high for 15 seconds to bring to room temperature. Place eggs in a bowl of warm water to bring to room temperature.

For the cheesecakes: Preheat the oven to 325. Process the graham crackers and chocolate chips in a food processor until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture is sandy and moist. Divide mixture evenly among 6 jumbo muffin cups, then press it evenly over the bottoms and about two-thirds of the way up the sides. Bake just until the crusts are set, about 8 minutes.

In a clean food processor bowl pulse the cream cheese, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and orange zest until smooth. Divide the filling evenly among the muffin cups and bake until the rims are slightly puffed and the centers are almost set, about 30 minutes. Cool the cheesecakes in the cups on a rack, then refrigerate, uncovered, for at least 2 hours.

Meanwhile, for the sauce: In a food processor or blender puree the strawberries with the sugar.

When ready to serve, run a small knife around the outside of the cheesecakes, then use the knife to gently lift them from their molds. Transfer the cheesecakes to dessert plates. Spoon some sauce over each and serve.

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