Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Cheesecake Bites

Each year the youth orchestra, which Abby and Sam are involved with, hosts a Chocolate and Chamber Music event. Parents of the students are asked to donate various desserts. I brought three different things, caramel bars, brownies, and cheesecake bites.

My friend Melanie has made cheesecake bites many times and I decided to try them. After emailing and texting Melanie various questions, I had a plan. I think they turned out quite well.

The first thing I did was bake my cheesecake recipe in a 9x13 pan. The next day, I cut it into 1 inch squares. To be able to do this relatively evenly, Melanie suggested I mark my pan. That was very helpful. Back in the fridge went the pan until the next day when I began to assemble.

First, I took each one out. This wasn't as difficult as I was afraid it might be.  Even though I had marked my pan, I still didn't cut straight. There happened to be a small section on one short end that was very, very small. This was to my advantage. I took those out first and had easy access to the rest of the bites.

My daughter Ellie suggested I buy these mini cupcake liners and they worked perfectly. I filled 74 with bites and left the edge pieces, which had cooked browner than I would have liked, for us to eat later.

Next with Ellie's suggestion and Melanie's approval, I dipped a roasted pecan in melted chocolate chips and placed it on top.

Then I melted caramels like I do for caramel bars. Then I sprinkled between one quarter to one half teaspoon of caramel over each bite. I was amazed at how well they turned out.

They were beautiful. They were delicious. They were a hit.

I will be making these again and expanding what toppings I add. I see a plethora of combinations in the future: fresh fruit, chocolate, other nuts, oreo bite on top of oreo cheesecake, etc. But I have a feeling that my love of caramel and nuts will make this one always my favorite cheesecake bite.

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