Thursday, September 20, 2012

MINI APPLE-PECAN CHEESECAKES

Apple chcake for 2

These little cheesecakes are perfect for up to four people (two servings per cheesecake).  If you’re a big dessert eater, you may want one all to yourself.  I cut the original Kraft recipe in half and adapted it slightly, using Neufchatel cheese instead of full-fat cream cheese, nonfat Greek yogurt in place of sour cream and my own graham cracker crust on the sides as well as the bottom (hubby loves a thick crust).  We gobbled these up, eating cheesecake after dinner for several nights. 
Apple chcake for 2 (7)
The brown sugar used in the crust, cheesecake filling and the apple-pecan topping imparts a caramel flavor to this dessert which complements both the apples and the pecans.  If you’ve made apple cheesecakes before, but not with brown sugar, please give this a try. 
If you don’t have 4-1/2” springform pans, think about buying them.  They’re not expensive at all, about $5 each, and so worth the investment.  You can also bake cake batter in them to make those cute little Bistro cakes.

Mini Apple-Pecan Cheesecakes
Adapted from Kraft
Rating:  9 out of 10

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Crust: 1 cup crushed graham crackers (about 5 crackers out of a package of 9) 1 Tbsp. light brown sugar
2 Tbsp. butter, melted

Heat oven to 350F (325F for dark or coated pans).  Combine ingredients in a small bowl and mix well with fork or fingers.  Pat mixture onto two 4-1/2” springform pans, covering bottom and sides.  Bake about 10 minutes, or till set but not brown.  Cool thoroughly, in fridge if necessary, while preparing cheesecake.

Cheesecake Filling: 8 oz. Neufchatel cheese, softened, cut into 6-8 chunks
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract (I used my homemade vanilla)
1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt, plain or vanilla-flavored

In work bowl of food processor, pulse cheese with sugar till smooth.  Add egg and pulse just till combined.  Add vanilla and yogurt and pulse briefly till combined.  Pour mixture into cooled crusts.
Apple chcake for 2 (4) Apple-Pecan Topping: 1 cup chopped peeled apples (I used 1/2 of a large Rome apple.)
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
3 Tbsp. chopped pecans
1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Combine all ingredients in small bowl, mixing with fork or fingers till well combined.  Carefully place mixture on top of cheese fillings.
Apple chcake for 2 (5) Bake cheesecakes @350F (325F for dark or coated pans) 40-45 minutes, or till centers are almost set. 
Apple chcake for 2 (6) Cool completely, then refrigerate for several hours, or overnight for best flavor.
Yield:  2 mini cheesecakes (2-4 servings total)   

2 comments:

Joan said...

What a cute idea using the mini spring form pans. Going to have to try this recipe soon. Thanks!

Barbara Bakes said...

I like everything about this recipe, especially the cute little size.