The night before Valentine’s Day my wife rolled over and stated that she would really like some sort of cheesecake for dessert. Not really awake and thinking the refrigerator was well stocked I agreed.
The next morning I had a dilemma. It seemed that most of the cream cheese had been used a few days before for some sort of brownie and all that was left was one stick. So that meant individual servings, still romantic and fun.
This of course meant a graham cracker crust instead of pie dough. A quick survey of the pantry showed we happened to be out of that particular premade dessert. Luckily there were still 8 amaretto cookies left for espresso. (Time to buy more).
Now all I needed was a pack of cupcake wrappers and everything would be good to go. A long search of the kitchen yielded none and I remembered that we gave the remaining bunch away to a friend who had a birthday party for their 4-year-old 2 months ago.
At this point it was looking like a trip to the grocery store was in order.
But that would be easy and I was feeling a bit masochistic.
Below is probably one of the best cheesecakes I have had without ricotta in it. The ratio is for two 4-ounce ramekins. Increase however you want, or take the concept and run with it.
Orange Cheesecake with Cranberry Jelly
- 8 amaretto cookies crushed to a powder
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1/2 tsp orange zest
- 1 8-ounce package cream cheese softened
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp butter softened
- 1 tsp Grand Marnier
- 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 3/4 cups frozen cranberries
In a 4-ounce ramekin melt one tablespoon butter. Swirl it around to coat the container then pour into the second ramekin. Swirl it around in the second container, then pour remaining butter into crushed cookies and orange zest. Mix well then take crust mixture and press equally into the base of each ramekin. Use your finger to pack the cookie crust firmly. Make filling. In a large mixing bowl add cream cheese, butter and sugar. Whip until creamy, about three minutes. Scrap down sides and add egg. Beat again until incorporated. Add liquor and mix again. Pour mixture evenly into ramekins up to the top. Place ramekins in a larger baking dish and fill with 1/4″ water. Steam custard in a preheated oven at 350 degrees until set, about 40 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for at least 1 hour. Make topping. In a sauce pan combine all ingredients for cranberry topping over high heat. When at a boil crush berries with a masher and reduce heat to medium low. Cook until thick. Spoon topping over custard evenly and place in refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours. Serve with espresso.