Lemon and Berry Swirl Mini Cheesecakes

This year for my family Christmas party I was asked to make dessert – my favorite thing to make for any party! There were about 40 people coming to the party, so I had to make a lot of dessert.

I love serving mini cheesecakes. Everyone gets their own personal cheesecake, it’s easy to serve, and by baking a fruit swirl into the cheesecake, it’s already decorated and ready to eat.

Walkers sent me a collection of their delicious, buttery shortbread cookies and I decided they would make a fabulous cheesecake crust. So I made 4 dozen mini cheesecakes; 1 dozen mini lemon cheesecakes with a Walkers Lemon Thins crust, 2 dozen mini raspberry swirl cheesecakes with a Walkers Raspberry Thins crust, and 1 dozen blackberry swirl mini cheesecakes with a graham cracker crust.

All the flavors were rich, creamy and fabulous, but the lemon swirl mini cheesecakes were my favorite.

The berry/lemon swirl is easy to do. I just warm some jam/lemon curd in a baggie in the microwave. Trim one corner of the baggie and swirl the jam/curd on top of the cheessecake.

Lemon and Berry Swirl Mini Cheesecakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Walkers Lemon Thins crumbs, (1 package)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 8oz packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 Cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 Tablespoons sour cream
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 300º. In a medium bowl, combined cookie crumbs, 2 tablespoons sugar  and melted butter. Divide crumbs evenly into 12 mini cheesecake or muffin cups. With fingers or round end of a wooden spoon, press crust down evenly.

In a stand or electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar until well combined. Add in eggs one at a time following with the vanilla, sour cream, pinch of salt. Mix until just combined.

Fill each crust almost to the top with cheesecake batter. Pipe about a teaspoon of lemon curd on top of each mini cheesecake and swirl curd into batter with a knife or toothpick to make a pretty design on top.

Bake for 18-20 minutes or until cheesecake is set. Remove from oven and let sit in pan at room temperature for 30 minutes before removing. Transfer mini cheesecakes to a cooling rack to cool completely, another 30 minutes or so.

Refrigerate until serving.

Lemon Curd

Combine yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a small saucepan. Whisk to combine. Set over medium heat, and stir constantly with a wooden spoon, making sure to stir sides and bottom of pan. Cook until mixture is thick enough to coat back of wooden spoon, 5 to 7 minutes.

Remove saucepan from heat. Add the butter, one piece at a time, stirring with the wooden spoon until consistency is smooth.

Transfer mixture to a medium bowl. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd to avoid a skin from forming; wrap tightly. Let cool; refrigerate until firm and chilled, at least 1 hour. Store, refrigerated in an airtight container, up to 2 days. (This lemon curd recipe makes more than is necessary for for one batch of mini cheesecakes.)

Berry Swirl Cheesecake: Use Walkers Raspberry Thins instead of Walkers Lemon Thins and substitute approximately 1/3 cup of seedless berry jam for the swirl on top instead of lemon curd.

Lemon Curd recipe from Martha Stewart.com