Chocolate Cream Tartlets -- Tuesdays with Dorie and Caramel Cashew Mini Cheesecakes -- Daring Bakers

This is going to be a very sweet post! When blogging events collide, here is the outcome, not bad, right? The cheesecakes are for the Daring Bakers and the Chocolate Cream Tartlets are for Tuesdays with Dorie. Maybe in a perfect world, where I didn't wait until the last minute to do my baking, I would have done a wonderful DB post about the cheesecake challenge, and the next day done a beautiful TWD post about the Chocolate Cream Tartlets, picked by Kim of Scrumptious Photography (thanks, Kim!). But here it is Monday night -- tsk, tsk, tsk, always the procrastinator, even though I love the idea of planning ahead, and plan to try it at some point, really :)

First up...Daring Bakers -- The April 2009 challenge is hosted by Jenny from Jenny Bakes. She has chosen Abbey's Infamous Cheesecake as the challenge. Thank you, Jenny!

I did mini cheesecakes in a muffin tin and they turned out lovely. One itty bitty problem I had with the recipe was that there is quite a bit of butter in the crust and that was kind of tricky to deal with after baking, it was kind of gooey at first, and then when the extra butter cooled, it hardened and stuck to the pan and cooling rack, not a big deal though.

My only substitution in the recipe was to use sour cream instead of heavy cream -- nothing against you heavy cream, please don't worry, sour cream will never replace you in alfredo, but I wanted that extra little tang from sour cream in the cheesecakes. For my topping I did a salted caramel sauce with cashews, I can't remember where I first saw a caramel cashew cheesecake, I think it was a Taste of Home recipe -- or possibly a restaurant menu...either way, it turned out delicious!

On to TWD... I was of course a little nervous about the chocolate pastry cream but it turned out lovely. My substitutions in this recipe include using skim milk instead of whole and to using semisweet chocolate. This was a wow dessert, I didn't expect to really like it, but when it's all put together -- the chocolate tart crust, the chocolate cream, the whipped cream on top -- this is one amazing little chocolate number!

I think I'm safe saying this is my favorite chocolate treat we've made with TWD. Wait, I forgot about those chocolate cupcakes last October, this might be a tie. Chocolate isn't my favorite 'flavor,' but I did completely fall in love with this tart, I think a lot of that had to do with the fact that I used semisweet instead of bittersweet chocolate. I've tried quite a few recipes with bittersweet chocolate and it's just not for me, I guess I'm not 'grown-up' enough :) Below photo is the crust being prepared in the food processor, I found that I needed to add a few tablespoons of water to get the crust to a proper consistency.

My fridge was a hang-out for mini desserts waiting to be completed yesterday...

Yum! Thank you for visiting!