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My problem with too much dessert is why these jam topped miniature cheesecakes are perfect for me. The recipe makes twelve individual cheesecakes, and if they are not all eaten, they can remain frozen, however I have not yet encountered them not being gone the same day they're made in this house. The crust in this recipe, like all of the ingredients, is plain, and made only of chocolate graham crackers and unsalted butter. I chose this because it is largely less sweet than a traditional chocolate wafer, making the overall finished product lighter in taste. The sweetness comes from the strawberry preserves used at the very end to finish these.
The method to ensure that your cheesecake(s) come out smooth and luscious is to be sure all of your ingredients are room temperature. I allow my eggs and my cheese and even my butter to sit at room temperature for 45 minutes to an hour before I begin, as cold ingredients will only ever yield a lumpy batter.
Ingredients for Jam Topped Miniature Cheesecakes
Vegetable oil spray
1 sleeve chocolate graham crackers, crushed (about 10 graham crackers)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup (6 ounces) Crème Fraîche, at room temperature
2 large eggs
3 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup seedless strawberry preserves, warmed and whisked until very smooth
Preheat the oven to 350°. Line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with foil baking cups and spray the cups with vegetable oil spray. In a food processor, crush the chocolate graham crackers. Alternatively, you can crush in a large plastic bag using a rolling pin. Add the butter and process until fine crumbs form. Spoon the chocolate cookie crumbs into the prepared baking cups and press with the bottom of a glass to compact. Bake for 5 minutes, or until almost set. Remove the pan from the oven to cool slightly while the cheesecake filling is prepared, but leave the oven on.
In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar at medium speed until smooth. Beat in the Crème fraîche, then add the eggs and vanilla and beat until smooth. Batter will be slightly runny.
Pour the cheesecake batter into the baking cups, filling them three-quarters full.
Bake the cheesecakes for 15 to 17 minutes, or until slightly jiggly in the center. Remove from the oven and spread 1 teaspoon of the warmed strawberry preserves on top of each cheesecake. Transfer the muffin tin to the freezer and chill the cheesecakes until set, about 15 minutes. If you are not serving immediately, the cheesecakes can remain in the freezer until you are ready to enjoy. They should be removed and paper baking cups peeled off about 45 minutes before serving. Transfer the cheesecakes to a platter and serve.