Monday, January 11, 2010

'Buttered' Up

We had another GNO last Friday night, and it was my turn to bring the dessert. GNO stands for 'Girls Night Out'. We are five women who have been meeting for a little over 2 years once a month on a Friday night. We have a potluck, laugh, share our lives, and then we discuss something hard. One of us is challenged to come up with a question. This month's question was: "How can you see that you have impacted the lives of others, specifically?" For a couple of us it was difficult to see, but the others helped by contributing what WE see about the impact they have. It was serious, tearful, thought-provoking and delightful. Two of us began this group by deciding what the criteria would be. We'd been ministering to many others at the time and were getting worn out, so we wanted to share with others who were strong at the time, in solid marriages and have a clear, defined path. It led us to invite, one at a time, the three others. We've grown to know and love each other and are somewhat accountable to each other. I highly recommend this kind of encouraging togetherness.


My 'Mary Jane's Farm' magazine (Mary Jane Butters) had just come when I was pondering on the little delicacy to make for dessert. She has a plethora, a covey, a herd of recipes to delight the palette this month. I tried the Mini Cheesecakes with Lemon Frosting for starters. I'll post the recipe at the end...after the blow-by-blow account of how to do it.
Above, I lined a muffin tin with cupcake papers. The crust is made of chocolate graham crackers, butter, and a little sugar. MJB recommends chocolate cookies or Pamela's gluten-free Simple Bites. Neither of those are available to me in this tiny mountain town.

I used a small glass that fit into the cupcake paper to press the 1 tablespoon of crumbs into the muffin tin. Then I filled the papers about 2/3 full of the filling (below) and baked it for about 25 minutes. Because my tins are bigger than the specialty pan recommended for the recipe it took longer to bake this tiny treasures.


Voila! The finished 'cake' with frosting and a sprinkling of lemon zest on top. I wish I'd had a white background for you so you could see the bottom layer of chocolate. These were delightfully delicious, and I'd do them again, even though the recipe made only 10. They are very sweet and need a little coffee to accompany them.

Lemon Mini Cheesecakes with Lemon Frosting
1 C chocolate cookie crumbs
2 T butter, melted
1 T sugar
8 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 egg
4 T lemon juice
1/2 t lemon extract
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. 2. In blender or food processor, grind cookies into small crumbs. In a small saucepan melt butter. Combine cookie crumbs and sugar in a small bowl; add butter and mix well. Divided evenly (about 1 T slightly rounded each) among the 12 cups of mini cheesecake pan and press into bottoms of pan. (Recall that I used muffin tins lined with cupcake papers.) Refrigerate. 3. In a blender or food processor, combine chream cheese, condensed milk, egg, and lemon juice and extract; mix until smooth and creamy. 4. Remove cheesecake pan from refrigerator. Lightly wipe sides of cups with oil (I used the cupcake papers). Spoon filling over individual crusts filling cups about 3/4 full. Bake for 20 minutes or until set. Cheescakes will puff up, but settle as they cool.
Frosting
2 t cornstarch
2 T lemon juice
1 egg yolk
4 oz cream cheese
1/2 t lemon extract
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 T grated lemon zest
1. Combine cornstarch, lemon juice, and egg yolk in small saucepan; mix well. Stir and cook over medium heat until thickened into a paste. Remove from heat; cool. 2. In a blender or food processor, combine paste, cream cheese, lemon extract, and powdered sugar; mix until smooth and creamy. Spoon over cooled mini cheesecakes. Top with fresh lemon zest. Refrigerate. Refrigerate leftover frosting for another time or another dessert.
Bon apetit!


6 comments:

幽默 said...
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Stacie, A Firefighter's Wife said...

To have that kind of fellowship! What blessing. I am so happy for you, Catherine.

Those lemon cheesecakes look amazing. Please promise me one when I come up next!

Cheesemakin' Mamma said...

Oops, looks like someone left you an nasty advertisement you might want to delete.

The cheese cakes look wonderful.

That is so great that you have a group like that to go to. Accountablility is so important! What an awesome way to encourage and challenge each other and just have some plain old fun.

Cat said...

I'm sorry if you came to my blog and found an unsavory message in the comment section. I have removed it, and I want to thank Jackie for pointing it out to me!

Connie said...

That sounds like a wonderful ladies gathering, to edify and encourage one another, which we all need!

Lovely looking dessert. Our health food store carries Pamela's gluten free products, including cake mixes, so I buy them sometimes for special occassions.

BTW, my hubby gave me a subscription to MJB magazine for Christmas... so I am enjoying it, as well.

Connie said...

That sounds like a wonderful ladies gathering, to edify and encourage one another, which we all need!

Lovely looking dessert. Our health food store carries Pamela's gluten free products, including cake mixes, so I buy them sometimes for special occassions.

BTW, my hubby gave me a subscription to MJB magazine for Christmas... so I am enjoying it, as well.