I love recipes that are elegant enough to serve for special occasions, but easy enough to make every day! And yummy enough that you want to. This is one of those. We make it at least once a week! It gives us a little sugar-free treat after dinner, which really helps cut down on those late-night snacks.
You're going to be amazed at how simple the crust is. And it's low-carb and gluten-free!
And did I mention easy?
A note about dishes to serve them in... I've served these in little half-pint Mason jars, which is very cute. But I also like the way they look as "shooters." And by the way... my shooter glasses are really just candle votives from Hobby Lobby. The number of servings you get out of this recipe depends on what size dishes you serve it in. If you're planning this for a special occasion, you might want to experiment ahead of time to see how it works out for you.
Then -- oh, darn! -- you'll have to eat your test batch. Oh well, do it for science!
makes 6-8, depending on serving sizes
No-bake lime cheesecake shooters
1/2 c. pecan pieces
8 oz. cream cheese
zest of one lime
juice of one lime (or 1/2 or 3/4, depending on how sour you like things)
4 pkts. Splenda
1/2 t. vanilla
2 drops yellow food coloring (optional)
1 drop green food coloring (optional)
1/4 c. cream
1/2 c. cream
1 pkt. Splenda
1/2 t. vanilla
This crazy-simple crust is made of: pecans! That's it! No butter needed.
In the photo below, you can see two different blender blades that came with my favorite kitchen gadget. The four-bladed piece (shown at the top of the photo) chops things up from coarse to fairly fine, depending on how long you run it. The shorter, two-bladed one (on the left) minces things down to a fine powder or -- in the case of nuts -- butter.
In the pic below you can see the difference. The left-hand image shows the pecans after running them with the four-blade piece for a few seconds. This would work just fine for crust if this is all you have. But if you have the second kind of blade, you can grind the pecan pieces until they're so fine they begin to stick together, like in the image on the right, below. This gives you something with the look and consistency of a crust made of graham crackers and butter. Neat, huh?!
Then you just place about 1 tablespoon of ground nuts in the bottom of your serving vessel, and tamp it down with the top of a bottle (securely capped and very clean, of course).
If you want a few pieces of lime peeling for garnish, make sure you slice off a couple thin slabs of peel before you grate off any lime zest. Then just slice them up into little slivers and set aside. (I don't recommend eating these. I love sour, but that's too much even for me!)
Now you can zest the lime, and proceed with combining it along with the cream cheese, lime juice, vanilla and sweetener (and food coloring, if you want). Whip this all up till it gets past looking like cottage cheese (top part of the image below), and starts to look smooth and creamy (bottom image).
Then in a separate small bowl, whip the 1/4 cup of cream just until it's stiff enough that pulling the beater out leaves a hole that doesn't fill in. Don't whip too much longer, or you'll wind up with butter.
Gently beat that whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. Taste, and adjust. Too sour? Add sweetener. Too sweet? Add a little more lime.
Then, combine the remaining cream, vanilla and sweetener, and beat in the same way, but don't add it to the mixture.
Taste it: if it's not sweet enough for you, and if you won't be topping it with sweetened whipped cream, add more sugar/sweetener. (Now that I'm adjusted to living without sugar, I'm more sensitized to the taste, so I tend to under-sweeten things.)
Sorry; I forgot to take assembly pictures. I think I must have been overcome with hunger!
It's pretty simple; you can pipe the stuff in, using a baggie with the corner snipped off, or you can just carefully spoon it in. Lime filling first, then the whipped cream. And top with the garnish, if that's your plan.
You can also make a lemon version, using the zest and juice of half a lemon, and omitting the green food coloring.
Either one is perfect for spring or summer. Mother's Day, Easter, bridal showers, graduation parties.
Or just a little something after dinner on Tuesday to keep you from raiding the pantry at midnight!