Mini cheesecakes crowned with Meyer lemon curd are a dessert worth breaking your new year’s resolution for.
1 cup minus 2 tablespoons (170 grams) graham-cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 250-gram packages plain cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar
1 teaspoon grated Meyer lemon zest
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/3 cup sour cream
Meyer lemon curd
1/2 cup Meyer lemon juice
4 egg yolks
1 whole egg
2/3 cup (135 grams) sugar
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut in pieces
Stir together graham-cracker crumbs and melted butter until mixture is sandy looking.
Divide the crumbs between 12 cupcake liners in a muffin tin. Use your fingers or the bottom of a small glass to firmly press the crumbs down.
Set aside while you make the cheesecake.
To avoid a lumpy batter make sure your cream cheese is at room temperature.
Preheat oven to 350F.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Scrape down the bowl then beat in the eggs one at a time. Scrape down the bowl again and beat in the sugar, lemon zest, salt and vanilla until smooth. Fold in the sour cream.
Divide the filling among the cupcake liners. The cheesecakes will puff up a bit during baking but will not rise, so you can fill the papers almost to the top.
Bake for 17-20 minutes or until the edges of the cheesecake have set and the middles no longer wiggle. Place the cheesecakes on a wire rack to cool to room temperature, then chill in the fridge overnight.
Meyer lemon curd
Whisk together all the ingredients except the butter in a medium heat-proof bowl.
Place the bowl over a small pot of gently simmering water and stir until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, approximately 7-12 minutes.
Remove the bowl from the heat and stir in the cold butter, one piece at a time. Allow the butter to mix in completely before adding the next piece.
Place the bowl back over the simmering water and stir for an additional 2 minutes.
Remove from heat. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the lemon curd to prevent a skin from forming.
Place in the fridge to chill overnight before using.
Top each cheesecake with a generous dollop of lemon curd and serve.
The assembled cheesecakes can be kept in a plastic container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Stephanie Eddy, who writes about her baking exploits at clockworklemon.com, lives in Calgary.