Thursday, October 22, 2009

Mini Pumpkin Toffee Cheesecakes (Treats For Co-Irkers)

I'm so glad that you don't actually get to see behind the scenes and witness the craziness that sometimes occurs when I'm baking. It's not that I don't know what I'm doing; it's more that I get distracted and forget how many eggs I've added to something and I'm then forced to look in the trash and count the shells. Or maybe I'll be working on two recipes at the same time and accidentally add an ingredient from one recipe to the other recipe instead. On one occasion I may have even added ammonia to a recipe calling for white vinegar. In my defense, both gallon jugs are stored under the sink and look almost identical! Don't freak out. I caught the mistake as soon as the ammonia smell hit my nose, but the ammonia was already dripping off the spoon into my salad dressing. Do-over.

Today was one of those days. In true Mag-math fashion, I calculated the amount of cream cheese incorrectly for these mini pumpkin toffee cheesecakes, but by the time I'd figured it out, the cream cheese was already creamed with the brown sugar and I had to refigure the entire recipe to make it all come out correctly. It was no big deal except that there was leftover cheesecake batter to deal with. I decided to see if I could use the extra batter to make these mini-cheesecake tarts.


They turned out beautifully and I'll keep this in mind for future cheesecake recipes because each one of these mini tarts is just enough for hubby and I for dessert. I store all my individual cheesecakes in the freezer and thaw them as needed. They take only about a half hour to thaw and are great to have on hand when company drops by, or in the event that you have a late night emergency craving for cheesecake. (Not that this has ever happened to me, of course.)


Mini Pumpkin Toffee Cheesecakes

Crust:

1/2 cup gingersnap crumbs (I used the food processor)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 TBSP unsalted butter, melted
2 TBSP sugar

Filling:

12 ounces of cream cheese, room temperature
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup milk chocolate toffee bits

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

Lightly spray the wells of the miniature cheesecake pan with cooking spray.

Crust:

Combine ingredients for crust, mix well, divide among the mini cheesecake pans and press into the bottom. I used a shot glass to do this. Bake crusts eight minutes, until set. Transfer to a wire rack for cooling, and lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees.

Filling:

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together cream cheese and brown sugar until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla and beat well. Add the pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice and beat well until fully mixed, about 1 minute. Stir in the toffee bits. Pour the batter over the crusts, dividing it evenly among the pans.

Bake until filling is set, 20-25 minutes. Cool on wire rack, and then refrigerate at least three hours before unmolding and topping.

Topping:

1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup marshmallow Fluff
1/4 tsp vanilla
tiny pinch of salt
Whisk topping ingredients until smooth. Dollop a rounded teaspoonful in the middle of each cheesecake. Sprinkle milk chocolate toffee bits on top if desired.

22 comments:

lakegirl said...

Maggie - Your description of cooking in the kitchen made me laugh. I have very similar experiences, not to mention what a mess the kitchen often is.

These look really good. I love cheesecake.

Barbara Bakes said...

Now I really want the mini cheesecake pan for Christmas!

June said...

I think I'm having one of those late night cheesecake cravings right now. Three a.m., sick dog, sleep deprived husband. Oooo ya! They look beautiful Mags, and delicious!

Karine said...

There is no sadness when you end up making cuties like that! The combo of flavors sound amazing :)

Co Irker said...

The cheesecake
that you bake,
makes my heart ache,
and make no mistake,
they're GOOOOD!

Yeah, I'm aware it doesn't rhyme. But who cares? No one should even be reading these comments - they should be making these. Now.

They were so good. I love the gingersnap crust. It truly takes the cheesecake to the next level.

Oh and now that I learned that you are as scattered brained as me when it comes to baking, you're treats taste even better(if that's possible).

Thank you so much, our cherished cheesecake cherub.

TGIF

stephchows said...

If you never made any mistakes you wouldn't have any fun stories :) how boring would that be? :D

Dyan said...

You reaffirm EVERY Woman's Mind the other side of Fifty! These look yummy much less so very attractive for my upcoming dinner party! Thanks for ALL your efforts....

Mags said...

lakegirl: It's so nice to know that I'm not the only one who screws up...lol.

Barbara: Put it on your good-girl list!

June: I wish I was there with a plate of cheesecake, a loaf of panettone and a bottle of wine.

Karine: Thanks for commenting!

Co Irker: I've finally let the cat out of the bag and now you know what a dork I am...LOL. Glad you enjoyed the cheesecakes!

Steph: SO TRUE!

Dyan: If you make them let me know if you liked them OK? As always, good to see you girlfriend!

Alyssa said...

These sound soooo good, and I've been wanting cheesecake! I seriously snorted out loud when I read about counting eggshells in the trash. Nope; never done that here! (yeah right!)

Megan said...

These are gorgeous! Picture perfect! I think the little tarts you made with the extra filling are a fabulous idea - although it would be dangerous to have cheesecakes sitting in the freezer! Ha ha.

Moogie said...

It is hard to keep up with you. Maybe it is all the old people parties and shenanigans that are sapping my strength. But I must find time to make these mini-pumpkin cheesecakes.

Colin's Mom said...

I just love mini desserts because somehow I feel less guilty about eating them! So how many does your recipe actually make?

Rocky Garcia said...

That was good for occasions like birthday party, children's party and Christmas party. The design is awesome!

Cakebrain said...

I love mini anything! I just love my mini cheesecake pan and I like how you've incorporated toffee into it! yum!

Mags said...

Alyssa: LOL.. this means I'm not alone in having this happen, yes?

Megan: It can be very dangerous indeed!

Moogie: Trust me, I accomplish nothing else. (You should see the dust bunnies under the bed!)

Colin's Mom: The recipe as I have it written will yeild 12.

Rocky: Thanks!

Cakebrain: I know! Isn't that pan the neatest thing?

Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one who has those little kitchen mishaps... I always seem to forget how many cups of flour I have added. I can see how you mixed up the vinegar and ammonia... I have both jugs under my sink, too. I'm surprised I haven't made that mistake (yet)!

Oh, and the mini cheesecakes look beautiful!

Lady P said...

damn - now, where did you say you worked??

Tasty Eats At Home said...

Oh wow, this incorporates all of the most wonderful flavors in the world all into one! Yum!

Amy said...

Oh dear that looks yummy! I wanna be a co irker too.

Megan said...

I just made mini pumpkin tarts yesterday but yours are cuter. Love the addition of the toffee, one of my favorites!

Amanda said...

Ok. OMG first of all. Just the NAME of these is enough to make me want to make them, but your stories always crack me up! LOVe the looking in the trash to count the eggshells HAHHA! Ammonia? No way. LMAO!

Maria said...

I love that these are mini and the toffee on the top makes them extra special.