Are you loving the seasons strawberries?
I know I am! I enjoy them just as much in salads as I do in pies. But sometimes a hint of strawberry flavor is all you need. These mini strawberry swirl cheesecakes are a perfect, sweet little bite. A chocolate cinnamon cookie crust holds the creamy vanilla cheesecake which is swirled with sweet strawberry puree.
It all begins with season’s best strawberries.
There’s no second guessing when these are done. They are simply baked like a cupcake in a muffin tin.
Decorate them to you heart’s content. (My heart loves hearts!) You will love the chocolate strawberry combo and the sweet, creamy cheesecake.
You can certainly substitute a vanilla or graham cracker crust. And other fruit purees would work well, too. But for me it is chocolate and strawberry all the way!
“ Be aware of wonder. Live a balanced life – learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work everyday some.” Robert Fulghum
- FOR THE STRAWBERRY PUREE:
- • 8 ounces of strawberries, sliced
- • 2 Tablespoons of sugar
- FOR THE CHOCOLATE COOKIE CRUST:
- • 24 chocolate wafer cookies (I used Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafers)
- • 3 Tablespoons of brown sugar
- • 5 Tablespoons of butter, melted
- • ⅛ of a teaspoon of cinnamon
- • a pinch of salt
- FOR THE VANILLA CHEESECAKE FILLING:
- • 2 (8 ounce) blocks of cream cheese, softened
- • 1½ cups of sugar
- • 2 eggs at room temperature
- • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
- • a pinch of salt
- Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F.
- Prepare the strawberry puree. Simply place the strawberries and sugar in a blender.
- Blend and then strain the mix through a fine mesh sieve.
- Next, the chocolate cookie crust.
- Place the cookies and the brown sugar in the working bowl of your food processor and pulse until they are fine crumbs.
- Tip the crumbs into a large bowl.
- Whisk in the cinnamon and a pinch of salt.
- Add the melted butter and use a fork to bring the mixture together.
- Press a Tablespoon of the cookie crumb mixture into the bottom of each cupcake paper.
- Bake for 5 minutes until the crust is set and set the cups aside to cool.
- Finally, prepare the cheesecake filling.
- Place the cream cheese in the bowl of your electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
- With the mixer on medium high, blend the cream cheese until smooth and fluffy.
- Slowly add the sugar in a steady stream.
- Add each egg, one at a time, being sure the egg is incorporated before adding the next.
- Add a pinch of salt and the vanilla extract and blend until all is combined.
- So now, place 3 Tablespoons of cheesecake batter into your cookie crust line cups.
- Add as many droplets of strawberry puree on top of the cheesecake batter to achieve the look you want for your cheesecake.
- I added 4 or 5 drops and used a toothpick to swirl the puree through the batter.
- You can also add 1 drop and pull a toothpick from the top through the droplet to achieve a heart.
- Place your cupcake tins in a roasting pan and place it on the rack of your oven. Fill the pan with hot water until it rises to halfway up the sides of the cupcake pan.
- Bake the cheesecakes for about 25-30 minutes, until set.
- Carefully remove the pans from the hot water and set on a wire rack to cool.
- Then refrigerate the cheesecakes in your cupcake tins, uncovered, for about 4 hours or overnight.
You can’t buy happiness but you can buy local and that’s kind of the same thing. Support your local farmers!