Up until now, it has been snowing non-stop for over 50 hours.
To cozy up in my house, I need more than hot chocolate…I want a hot dessert! But who do I have at home that can make something like that? I don’t have fudge to make a hot lava cake and I don’t think I’m allowed to set my banana on fire to make some flambé…
So I scavenged through my pantry and fridge, and noticed that I had a lot of cream cheese (There was a sale at safeway a week ago), extra graham crumbs from my strawberry cheesecake cupcakes, as well as a lot of glass jars (from the Crème brûlée at Costco)
What caught my eye was the side of the cream cheese box…IT WAS CHEESECAKE! I had never made cheesecake before, so I thought this would be a cool experience since I had all the ingredients already anyways.
I DID want to keep to my “experimenting” spirit, so I tried to incorporate some lemon flavor and fruit inside it as well. I’m so glad it turned out so well, because after 40 minutes of baking, I had a warm, melt-in-my-mouth treat to cozy up to. It’s actually a very easy recipe. Enjoy!
2 8oz sticks of cream cheese
¼ cup of sugar
¼ cup lemon juice
1 tbsp of lemon rind
1/8 cup butter
1 cup graham crumbs
LET’S GET MIXING!
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit
2. The recipe on the box said to mix all the ingredients together. However, from my experience with making cream cheese frosting, I knew that the cream cheese would not be smooth and would be chunky instead. It’s really important to mix the cream cheese by itself until no lumps are visible. This will ensure that no lumps appear in later steps when you start adding other ingredients.
*Use a rubber scraper to smooth the cream cheese out like you’re spreading an icing on a cake, and see if there are any lumps in the cream cheese. If there are, keep mixing!
3. Once the cream cheese is smooth, add the sugar, lemon juice, lemon rind, and egg into it, and mix until no lumps are visible. Set aside mixture.
*To get the lemon rind, I used a mini cheese grater that I bought from New Zealand because I didn’t have a lemon zester. I personally don’t like it when I find long strips of lemon in my desserts (I’m not really a fan of citrus), so getting little chunks of lemon skin from the cheese grater was perfect for me 🙂
4. Melt the margarine. Add the graham crumbs into the margarine and mix until well incorporated
5. Grease the glass jars with shortening so that the graham crust doesn’t stick to the glass after it bakes
6. Line the bottom of the jar with a layer of crust. I used 4 teaspoons for every jar. Use the spoon to pack the crust down so that none of the cheesecake mixture can go through.
7. Pour the cheesecake mixture on top of the crust until it is about 1 cm from the rim of the glass jar (This leaves room for decorations later)
8 . Fill a large cake pan with hot water until it is ¼ of the way deep. Place the jars in the pan so that the water is about halfway up the jar. This prevents the glass and cheese from being overheated and “crusting.” I got this method from learning how to not burn chocolate 🙂
9. Bake the cheesecakes for 40 minutes
10. Take out the cheesecakes and let them cool for 15 minutes. Add the blueberries on top, and drizzle some warm jam over it if you’d like.
11. SERVE WARM! It really helps lighten the mood of a cold, snowy day. However, you can also freeze it like a normal cheesecake, and it will still taste good.
I hope you enjoy this recipe!