December 19th, 2010
Individual Cheesecakes with Orange-Cranberry Sauce
1 ½ cup graham cracker crumbs
4 tablespoons unsalted butter; melted
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
3 (8 ounce) bricks of cream cheese; softened
3/4 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 vanilla bean , split in half and seeds scraped
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1/3 cup heavy cream
12 ounces fresh cranberries
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup orange juice
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 cupcake pans with 24 paper liners.
2. In a small bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, sugar and cinnamon. Stir together with a fork until well blended and all dry ingredients are moistened and look like wet sand. Press 1 tablespoon of the mixture into the bottom of each cupcake liner. Bake until just set, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees F.
3. In a medium bowl beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed with an electric mixer just until smooth. Beat in sugar until well incorporated. Mix in the salt and vanilla. Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition, add in the heavy cream. Be careful not to over-mix.
4. Spoon 3 to 4 tablespoons of the cheesecake batter over the crust in each cupcake liner using an ice cream scoop or two spoons.
5. Bake until the filling is just set, about 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and let cool to room temperature. Transfer to the refrigerator and let chill for at least 4 hours before topping and serving, preferably overnight.
1. In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, dissolve the sugar in the orange juice. Stir in the cranberries and cook until the cranberries start to pop (about 10 minutes). Remove from heat and place sauce in a bowl. Cranberry sauce will thicken as it cools.
2. Before serving, top refrigerated cheesecakes with the cooled cranberry sauce.
adapted from Handle the Heat 
URLs in this post:
 vanilla bean: http://www.beanilla.com/madagascar-vanilla-beans-p-45.html
 Handle the Heat: http://www.handletheheat.com/2010/11/mini-vanilla-bean-cheesecakes-with.html