Today is my boyfriend’s birthday, so I made him his favorite cheesecake.

Crust:
6 graham crackers, crushed
1/4 cup crushed toasted hazelnuts (or nut of choice)
2-3 T melted butter

Filling:
1 8oz package cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
3 T milk
1 egg
1/4 cup sour cream
1 t vanilla
juice and zest 1/2 small lemon
1 T flour

Directions:
Preheat oven 350 degrees.

Grease two standard size ramekins liberally, set aside.

In a small bowl mix graham crackers with nuts. Add melted butter until mixture holds together. Press mixture into bottom and side of ramekins. Bake in oven for about 5 minutes.

In another bowl stir cream cheese and sugar together until smooth. Blend in milk, sour cream, vanilla, lemon juice and zest, and flour. Add the egg and mix until just incorporated. Do not over mix.

Fill ramekins with cheese mixture and place in a casserole or cake pan. Fill pan 2/3 of the way up the side of the ramekins with boiling water. Bake for 20-30 minutes. The cheesecakes are finished when they only slightly jiggle in the center. Cool for 1 hour at room temp and at least 1 more hour in the refrigerator.

*Note: I’ve tried this twice now and neither time was I able to remove the cheesecakes without making them look less than pretty. So, I suggest serving it in the ramekin, though I’ll keep experimenting and update if I figure out a foolproof way to remove them.

For the chocolate hearts, I simply melted 1/4 cup of chocolate chips (buy good chocolate and do not add butter to the chips). Next I spread the chocolate out on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and cooled in the fridge until hard. Finally, I cut the chocolate with this adorable tiny heart cookie cutter I found at Mrs. Cook’s.

Now I just need to figure out what to serve for dinner!

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