Friday, April 29, 2011
Friday Food Craft: Individual No Bake Cheesecakes!
I told you the mason jars would be making an appearance! This is a great way to make individualized desserts to take to a picnic, pot luck, or pack in a lunch. Even more no fuss: a no bake dessert! The glass jars certainly may go in an oven to bake (and I've seen many clever recipes online for pies, etc.) but I decided a no bake dessert was the way to go this time.
You will need:
1 sleeve graham crackers (about 5 ounces)
4 Tablespoons butter (melted)
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 cup heavy whipping cream
16 ounces cream cheese (softened)
1/2-3/4 cup sugar (depending how sweet you like your desserts)
zest of one lemon
juice of one lemon
To make the crust you will need to smash up your graham crackers (other crackers or cookies may be substituted if you have something else on hand). I used my trusty old rolling pin and placed my crackers in a sealed bag and smacked/rolled them to smithereens. If you prefer, you may use a food processor. Once I have my crumbs, I mix in 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar to evenly distribute it. Then, mix in your melted butter with a fork (or pulse it in with your food processor).
Once you have your crust, spoon it into your containers. While I used tiny mason jars (4oz. jars) you could also use a pie plate or any other container you like for your cheesecake. Gently pat your crust into the bottom of your container.
To make the filling, start by whipping 1 cup of heavy cream into whipped cream (like you would top a sundae with). You could try substituting an already whipped topping, but I like the results better with real whipped cream. Once you have your whipped cream, add in your cream cheese and sugar. Last, but certainly not least, add in the zest and juice of one lemon. I found an exceptionally large lemon, so I used all of the zest but only about 3/4 of the juice. Again, you may add this to suit your taste. If you prefer, lime juice would also be lovely in this.
Spoon your filling over your crust and smooth out with a spoon or spatula. Cover and refrigerate for 6 hours or overnight (the jars come in handy here as each one has it's own built in, air tight, cover). Serve as is, or with your favorite fruit topping (okay, okay or chocolate/caramel, etc.). Enjoy!