Mini Chocolate Candy Cane Cheesecakes
I promise that I only have one more peppermint recipe to share with you. I don't know about you, but I still have a whole jar full of candy canes left that I need to figure out what to do with. This recipe I was pretty excited to make because I don't usually make cheesecake since it's not a popular dessert in my house. This christmas, my family did something a little different than usual. We decided to draw names out of a hat instead of everyone getting gifts for everyone. It saves a lot of money and time! This year I got one of my brother-in-law's. I still made a bunch of goodies for everyone, but I made something extra special for him. So, I picked my sister's brain on what to make for him. Cheesecake and chocolate where near the top. I had this recipe bookmarked for a while and I thought it would be perfect.
Boy was I right.
I had extra filling, so I made a ramekin for myself. Oh my word. It was creamy, pepperminty and addictive. I had to really restrain myself from eating the entire thing in one sitting. Just don't do what I did and get distracted while the ganache is chilling and let it get too hard. I totally messed up on that part by trying to warm it up a little to pipe then warmed it up too much! I was quickly running out of time so I just had to make do with it. It didn't change the taste any, just made it a little less pretty.
Mini Chocolate Candy Cane Cheesecakes
For the crust
1 cup chocolate cookie crumbs (I used Oreos with the filling)
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 Tablespoon sugar
For the cheesecake
12 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream
2/3 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
Pinch of salt
Pink food coloring (optional)
25 white chocolate candy cane kisses, chopped
For the topping
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 Tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
Coarsely crushed candy canes, for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350˚ F. Line a 24 mini muffin pan with liners. To make the crust, combine the chocolate cookie crumbs, melted butter and sugar in a small bowl. Mix with a fork until evenly blended. Divide the crust mixture between the wells of the prepared pan, about 2-3 teaspoons in each. Press the crumb mixture into a flat layer on the bottom of the well. (The bottom of a shot glass is great for this.) Bake for 10 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack.
Reduce the oven temperature to 300˚ F. To prepare the filling, combine the cream cheese and sour cream in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until smooth and well blended. Add in the sugar and mix until incorporated, about 1 minute more, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Blend in the egg, peppermint extract and salt. If desired, tint the batter light pink with food coloring. Continue to beat until the mixture is completely smooth. Fold in the candy cane kisses with a spatula. Divide the mixture evenly over the cookie crumb crusts and smooth the tops slightly. Bake just until set, about 22 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool in the pan to room temperature. Once completely cool, transfer the pan to the refrigerator and chill thoroughly before removing the cheesecakes, at least 3 hours.
Once the cheesecakes are well chilled, carefully remove them from the pan. To make the ganache, place the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl. In a small saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer over medium heat. Once simmering, remove from the heat and immediately pour over the chocolate. Let stand 1-2 minutes. Whisk in small circular motions until a smooth ganache has formed.
Whisk in the butter until completely incorporated. Let the mixture stand at room temperature until slightly thickened for piping onto the cheesecakes. (Speed this process in the refrigerator or freezer, but be sure to whisk every 5 minutes or so.) Once the ganache has thickened, transfer to a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip and pipe onto the cheesecakes. Sprinkle with crushed candy canes. Refrigerate until the ganache is set.
Source: Annie's Eats