There are so many great, inspiring blog events being hosted right now. One of those (that I am posting about just under the wire!) is hosted by Holly, the Phe/MOM/enon, to raise awareness of the Little Wonders March for Babies. Be sure to check out her Blogging for Babies event. Even if you don’t have time to participate, it is definitely inspiring to read her story and possibly help to reach her donation goal, if you can. Thanks, Holly, for sharing your story!
A couple of weeks ago I had dinner with a coworker at Tallulah and it was great. For dessert, I had the pistachio cheesecake with tart cherry compote and it was fab. The cheesecake was a little firmer than usual and I loved that the pistachio flavor was in the filling and not in the topping or crust. It also helps that I love anything with pistachios or pistachio flavored (especially ice cream and pudding) and I love cherries.
So, I set out to make something similar. All I did here was take a basic cheesecake and add toasted/chopped pistachios to it. I wanted to add pistachio extract to it but I couldn’t find it at any store and I didn’t really feel like ordering it online, considering I probably wouldn’t use it often and it cost twice as much to ship as it did to buy. But if I make this again, I will definitely use pistachio extract because mine was not quite as pistachio-y as the one at the restaurant, and I would like it to be.
I have a hodge podge of mini pans, so I used 2 tart pans that are about 4 or 4.5″ and 2 smaller 2″ tartlettes. Next time I’d just use two of the larger ones and make them a little thicker.
I’m hoping for one more blog entry before leaving for Michigan this week to spend some time with my family for Greek Easter. I have been so busy and haven’t been making my usual rounds of blogs, so I apologize. I’m not ignoring you!
Makes 2 4″ tarts; double to make 9×13 pan of bars or quadruple to make a standard cheesecake in a 9″ springform pan (you will probably only need to double the graham crackers, though)
3.5 graham cracker sheets
2 Tbsp. butter, melted
1 (8 oz.) packge cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract (or pistachio extract)
1/4 cup toasted and finely chopped pistachios
*I really don’t have a recipe for the compote. I just threw some cherries, a little sugar, and a splash of water and a drizzle of in a saucepan and called it a day*
Preheat the oven to 350. (If you are using a springform pan, wrap foil around the bottom and up the edges.)
Crush the graham crackers in the bowl of a food processor (or put in a plastic bag and then beat with a heavy object :). Stir in the butter. Press the graham cracker picture into the tart pans to form a crust. Bake for about 7-10 minutes (depending on the size of your pans) or until it’s aromatic and golden brown. Set aside to cool.
Beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Add the sugar and vanilla and beat until incorporated. Beat in the egg. Fold the pistachios into the mixture. Pour the mixture over the cooled tart pans.
Pour hot water in a large baking dish. If you are using a springform pan, place it inside the pan with the water (it should come up about halfway) and then place in the oven. If you are doing bars or mini tarts, place the hot water on the bottom of the oven and then place your tarts on the rack above it. Cook until the edges are set and puffed, but the middle still jiggles slightly (about 13 minutes for the 2″ tarts and 16 minutes for the 4″ ones). Set aside to cool completely, and then refrigerate before serving.
Want to know more about Little Wonders March for Babies Team? Fantastic!! Here is the Team Page. Any amount that you can sponsor is extremely appreciated. Please, please help spread the word and sponsor Little Wonders if you can! Thank you!