For my roommate’s 30th birthday, we had a party with lots of appetizers, dips, delicious desserts, and plenty of great beer. I told my roommate I’d make whatever dessert she wanted me to make. After my Thanksgiving pumpkin cheesecake with bourbon-sour cream topping, her request was more pumpkin cheesecake. She didn’t want the sour cream topping, though, and I wanted to make mini cheesecakes in the interest food portability during the party. I went right to theWilliams-Sonoma website and these mini pumpkin cheesecakes were born! They got rave reviews, especially for the crust! After all, what goes better with a high-quality beer than pumpkin cheesecake?!?
Miniature Pumpkin Cheesecakes with Cinnamon Crust
adapted from www.williams-sonoma.com
Ingredients: For the crust:
1/2 c. graham cracker crumbs
1 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 TBSP unsalted butter, melted
2 TBSP sugar
For the filling:
1 c. pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
14 oz. low-fat cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1. Have all the ingredients at room temperature. Preheat an oven to 325°F. Lightly butter the wells of a muffin pan. Alternately, line muffin pan with foil liners.
2. To make the crust, in a small bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, cinnamon, butter and sugar and stir until blended. Divide the mixture among the prepared wells. Using a juice glass or other small glass, press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the wells. 3. Bake until the crusts are set, about 10 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely. 4. Reduce the oven temperature to 300°F. 5. To make the filling, in a small bowl, stir together the pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg. Set aside.
6. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat together the cream cheese and sugar on low speed until smooth, about 5 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. 7. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl, then beat in the vanilla. 8. Add the pumpkin mixture and beat until completely blended, about 1 minute. Pour the batter into the crusts, dividing it evenly among the wells. 9. Bake until the filling is set and puffed but not cracked, 23 to 25 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before removing from pan.
yield: 12-14 miniature cheesecakes