Yes. You read the title correctly. And whether you are slobbing out at home on a day off like me, sneakily reading this at work whilst avoiding your boss or ignoring the friend you’re meeting for a drink in order to check out this fabulously titled recipe; you must be thanking me. And you are most welcome.
And since its January and the LAST thing anyone wants to do in January is cook more expensive food. I’ve made this recipe using super cheap ingredients, but still kept the quality in there. Nothing is better than this, except maybe a glass of fizz but that’s a whole other story. Let me tell you a bit about my cheesecakey creations!
Making desserts into cupcake form is something I saw a lot of in 2015 and I thought I would write my own almost hassle free version of a beautiful Cheesecake made with Sicilian Lemons, and a beautiful crunchy all butter biscuit base. Except mine is given a little extra silky goodness in the form of quality white chocolate, in contrast to the addition of the zingy ginger snaps in the base which just makes these cups even more awesome. And let the druelling commence!
I also thought it would be hassle free in the terms of them being individual cheesecake cupcakes, rather than having to slice a huge one up. These littl’uns are great for packed lunches, stops the kids getting messy with them and stops your other half/housemate/mother from eating a whopping big slice.
There isn’t much more I can say other than they went down an absolute treat with my colleagues at work. Not that they usually complain at free baked goods. But this must be a good sign that these are worth giving a go! Make sure once you’ve made them you take a picture and upload it to Twitter or Instagram and tag me @soph__austin
For the base
- 2tbsp butter, melted
- 2tbsp soft brown sugar
- 15 ginger snaps
- 5 digestive biscuits
- Pinch of sea salt
For the cheesecake
- 400g cream cheese
- 100g caster sugar
- 2 free range eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 100ml double cream
- 100g melted white chocolate (best quality you can afford)
- Zest of 2 unwaxed lemons
- Preheat your oven to 180c/gas mark 4 and line a 12 hole muffin tray with muffin or cupcake cases. I also put a few grains of uncooked rice in the tin BEFORE I put the paper cases in to absorb a bit of the grease from the biscuit base as the cheesecakes cook.
- Take all your aggression out on smashing up those biscuits. Because believe me, the ginger nuts need a hell of a bashing. Put all 20 biscuits into a polythene bag, preferably a ziplock one, and bash them, whack them, roll them out til your hearts content. Well, until you have an evenly fine-ish crumb. Feel free to leave a few odd chunks for a bit of texture but it will need to be fine enough to hold itself together. Now put the sugar into the bag and give it a shake up to make sure it’s all mixed.
- Melt down your butter and add into a bowl with the biscuit crumbs and mix until it looks a bit like wet sand. Put 1 tablespoon of the crumbs into each paper case and press down using a spoon to get it nicely packed down. Now bake them off in the oven for about 8 minutes in the centre of the oven. Then leave the tin on top of a wire rack to allow the bottom of the tin to cool slightly while you make the cheesecake mix.
- Turn your oven down to 160c/gas mark 3 and melt your white chocolate over a Bain Marie or in the microwave. Do this first so it can have time to cool slightly.
- In one bowl use a whisk to whip your cream just so it starts to thicken. Do NOT over whip.
- In another bowl using an electric hand whisk, whip up your cream cheese until it is smooth and no longer lumpy. Add caster sugar, vanilla and salt and mix again.
- Crack in the eggs one at a time, mixing well between each one, then fold in your whipped cream and white chocolate until it’s one smooth mix.
- Now evenly spoon your mix into the muffin cases and bake in your preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until they begin to puff up slightly and still have a gentle wobble in the middle.
- Once they’re done, turn your oven off but leave them in there with the door open slightly for about 10 minutes but be sure to keep an eye on them.
- Take them out and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Now you can decorate them once they’re cool with whatever you like, I chose a dollop of lemon curd and some fresh berries but you could use cream and some lemon zest, continue on the ginger theme and mix some ginger and spices of choice into whipped cream and pipe that on top… Whatever takes your fancy.
- Then scoff them. Before any of your work colleagues get a chance. I made the mistake of taking my batch in and I didn’t even get a look in.
Lots of January love,