Creamy cheesecake bites, flavored with pear nectar, with graham cracker–granola crust.
Pear Cheesecake Bites
Yield: 2 dozen miniature cakes • Preparation: 25 minutes • Bake: 15 to 20 minutes • Cool: 30 minutes • Refrigerate: 1 hour
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- 1¼ cups granola cereal
- 1 cup graham-cracker crumbs
- ¾ cup sugar, divided
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 egg white, lightly beaten
- 1 (5.5-ounce) can pear nectar
- 1 (2.35-gram) bag herbal spiced tisane*
- 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
- 1 (4-ounce) package goat cheese
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Garnish: sugared thyme†
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- In a small bowl, combine granola, graham-cracker crumbs, and ¼ cup sugar. Add melted butter and egg white, stirring to combine. Press mixture into bottoms and halfway up sides of 2 (12-cup) miniature cheesecake pans.‡ Bake for 5 minutes. Set aside.
- Increase oven temperature to 375°.
- In a small saucepan, bring pear nectar to a boil over medium-high heat. Add tisane bag. Remove pan from heat. Steep for 10 minutes. Remove and discard tisane bag. Set nectar aside.
- In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add goat cheese, and continue beating until combined. Gradually beat in remaining ½ cup sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla and reserved nectar, stirring to combine.
- Evenly divide batter (approximately 1½ tablespoons) among prepared crusts, filling two-thirds full. Bake until puffed and set, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for approximately 30 minutes. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.
- Garnish with sugared thyme, if desired.
- *For testing purposes, we used Celestial Seasonings Bengal Spice herbal tea.
- †Lightly coat 24 thyme sprigs with cooking spray. Sprinkle with sugar. Use immediately as a garnish.
- ‡Chicago Metallic and Norpro both manufacture miniature cheesecake pans. These pans have 12 wells (or cups) and have removable bottoms. Look for them wherever bakeware is sold.
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