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Monday, June 09, 2008

Lemon Cheesecake Tarts

So I made these little lemon cheesecake tarts for my cousin's bridal shower...they turned out pretty well judging by the amount of recipe requests thus far.  I thought I'd save myself some typing and just share it here.  This recipe originated over at Cooking Light, but I adjusted it.

Lemon Cream Cheese Cookie Cups            Yields 2 dozen approximately

1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1 large egg
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
cooking spray

1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. grated lemon rind
1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 large egg
8 oz. block of softened cream cheese

Homemade lemon curd (I used Ina Garten's from the Food Network's recipe.  Piece of cake)
 or store bought if you don't have time
Tiny mint leaves for garnish

To prepare dough, beat 1/2 cup sugar and butter at medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add vanilla and egg, beat well.  Mix dry ingredients in a small bowl and add to sugar/butter mixture.  Beat at low speed until well blended.  Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour, or freeze for 15 min.  Gently press dough into mini muffin tins coated with cooking spray.  Go as light as you can on the dough, it will puff up and swell as it cooks.  You want just enough dough to cover the muffin cup lightly.

Preheat oven to 350.  To prepare filling, beat 1/2 cup sugar and the next four ingredients in a mixer until smooth.  Spoon 1 TB. of filling into each prepared muffin cup.  Bake at 350 degrees for 23 minutes or until edges are brown and filling is set.  Remove cups from pans immediately, cool on a wire rack.  

At this point, the cookies will store well in the fridge for a couple days.  When you are ready to serve them, top with lemon curd and a mint leaf.

I know it looks complicated.  Believe me, it's worth the hassle.

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