Desserts, Sweet Snacks

Lemon Cheesecake Mini-Jars, with mixed berry compote

For the Crust
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For the Cheesecake
1/2 cup granulated sugar
zest of one lemon
2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened to room temperature
2 large eggs at room temperature
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons lemon extract

For the compote
1/4 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup strawberries, fresh or frozen
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon corn starch mixed with 2 tablespoons cold water
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 350F.

In a medium bowl, stir together cookie crumbs and melted butter. Evenly divide the crumbs between your individual serving, oven-safe dishes and lightly press the crumbs into the bottoms of each dish to form a crust layer. Place the prepared cheesecake crusts on a baking sheet and bake the crusts in preheated oven for 6 minutes, carefully remove them to a wire rack to cool.

Set your kettle to boil a large pot of water for the water bath.

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with your paddle attachment, combine the sugar and lemon zest and mix until the sugar is moistened and fragrant. Add in the cream cheese and cream together until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each before adding the next. Make sure to scrape down the bowl in between each egg. Add heavy cream and lemon extract and mix until smooth.

Pour batter into serving dishes, directly onto the prebaked crusts, until about 3/4 of the way full. Place jars into a larger pan with high sides and pour boiling water into the larger pan until halfway up the sides of the jars. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, the edges will appear to be set, but the center will still have a little jiggle to it.

Carefully remove the cheesecake jars from the water bath and place on a cooling rack to cool completely. Once the cheesecakes are completely cooled, place them into the refrigerator for at least 5 hours.

While your cheesecakes are chilling, make your compote. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine blueberries, strawberries and sugar. Stew until soft and the sugar is dissolved. Add corn starch slurry and have come to a boil so the mixture will thicken. Remove from the heat and add the lemon juice. Let cool completely before spooning over the cheesecakes and serving.

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