Monday, January 25, 2016

Petite Hibiscus Pecan Cheesecakes

I love flowers and I love cheesecake. And while I believe you can never have too many flowers, cheesecake is a different story. With moderation in mind, I wanted to create a cheese cake option that still offered something to wow family and friends. So I figured why not combine edible hibiscus flowers, cheesecake and throw in some toasted pecans to create a unique, rich, delicious desert.

Petite Hibiscus Pecan Cheesecakes
by Lori Churchill
Recipe makes 18 cakes

4 ounces toasted pecans
4 ounces graham crackers
3 teaspoons butter, soft
2 8-ounce packages Neufchatel cream cheese
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup sour cream
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons Hibiscus Flower Extract
2 eggs
A small hand full of toasted pecans for garnish - fine chop
Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup
1 mini cheesecake pan (I used the Norpro brand - designed for 12 mini cheesecakes)

Allow butter, cream cheese and eggs to come to room temperature.

For the crust - Toast pecans in the oven or a cast iron skillet. Blend graham crackers and pecans in a food processor to the desired consistency, add soft butter, mix and set aside.

For the filling - make sure ingredients are at room temperature to make sure they mix together easily.

In a medium mixing bowl, add cream cheese, sugar, sour cream, honey, heavy cream, vanilla and hibiscus extract, mix just until it comes together (be careful not to over mix).

Crack eggs in a small bowl and gently whip. Add eggs to cream cheese mixture and fold in.

Combining in baking pan - Add a couple of tablespoons of the crust mixture to each spot in your un-greased cheesecake pan. Pack lightly but firmly with a dough tamper. Then add the cheesecake filling, making sure to leave a little room at the top of the pan for your cakes to rise while baking.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 18 min. Let cool for 10 minutes and gently remove from pan.

Let cool to room temperature, then further allow to chill in the refrigerator. Once chilled, place on a pretty plate, add a sprinkle of chopped pecans around the cheesecake, drizzle a couple of teaspoons of hibiscus flower syrup on top, then place a hibiscus flower in the center and serve.

Don’t forget to take a photo of your pretty petite cakes before you take that first bite. :)


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