MINI STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE CHEESECAKES
1 1/2 cups saltine crackers
9 tablespoons butter (melted)
2 tablespoons sugar
1 quart strawberries (pureed)
2 blocks cream cheese (softened, 8 ounces each)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
6 whole strawberries (to garnish)
1/2 cup whipped cream (to serve)
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a 12-cup cupcake tin with cupcake liners.
In the bowl of a food processor, add saltine crackers, butter and sugar and pulse until crumbs come together. Divide the mixture between the muffin liners, pressing down to form a crust. Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.
In a clean food processor bowl, add the strawberries and puree until smooth. Set aside. Remove 1/3 cup of pureed strawberry mixture.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the cream cheese and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add sugar and flour and beat to combine. Add vanilla and 1/3 cup strawberry puree and beat until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until just incorporated, making sure not to overwork.
Divide the filling between the cooled saltine crusts. Drizzle another 1-2 tablespoons of strawberry puree on top of the cheesecakes and swirl puree with a skewer. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the cheesecakes are set but still jiggle in the center. Remove to a baking rack to cool, then refrigerate until set.
When ready to serve, top with a dollop of whipped cream and a strawberry.
Tip: Be careful not to over beat the eggs in the batter or the cheesecake will split while baking. Beat until just incorporated. Freeze cheesecake cupcakes to quickly set if in a hurry after baking.