Thursday, October 10, 2013

Sweet Potato Cheesecake Tarts with Pecan Crusts


*The Salisbury steak is about to hit the fan around here folks and I just thought I'd warn you if you have a pacemaker, poor sense of humor, or are a Halloween kill-joy to turn the channel now.  It's about to go dark around here after this post and the Evil Cookie Queen with be taking over with Halloween hijinks until the big day of doom arrives.*

Until that darkness rains down upon us let's enjoy a tranquil moment, complete with a deep breath of crisp fall air. In my part of California we don't experience fall we have mostly warm afternoons leading to somewhat cool evenings.  During this time of year I like to pretend I'm surrounded by acres of trees sporting their fall color and wearing a cable sweater instead of shorts and sandals.

I also love to mix it up with fall desserts, not to be the most hated blogger in the land; but the avalanche of pumpkin recipes I've been seeing day in and day out already has me on overload.  I like pumpkin too and will be baking with it soon enough, but I just want to ease a little into fall before going all out pumpkin.

A few years back I made these Sweet Potato Cheesecake Tarts for a contest and my mom has been asking for them ever since.  I had no idea where the original recipe went, so I sat down and made them again and wrote the recipe up.  My mom was very happy with her surprise delivery I may add.

Sweet Potato Cheesecake Tarts with Pecan Crusts

Pecan Crust:
1/2 cup pecans, ground
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
3-4 tablespoons ice water
1/2 teaspoon salt

Sweet Potato Cheesecake Filling:
3/4 cup mashed sweet potato
1 large egg
1/3 cup granulated sugar
5 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Pinch ground cloves
Pinch salt

Crumble:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup finely chopped pecans
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Pinch ground cloves
Pinch salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

1)  Make the crust first.  Add the pecans, flour, light brown sugar, butter, and salt to the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times.  Slowly add the water one tablespoon at a time through the top of the food processor and pulse until the crust comes together.  Or you can mix the crust in a bowl using a pastry cutter.

2)  Turn the dough out onto a floured board and roll until 1/4-inch thick.  Cut out rounds with a 2-inch fluted (or just round) cutter and place the rounds into a 24-cup mini muffin pan sprayed with no-stick spray.  Push each round down with your finger and place the dough in the fridge until needed.


3)  To the bowl of a food processor add sweet potato, egg, sugar, cream cheese, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt and pulse until well mixed.  Or mix in a bowl with a whisk.  Set aside.

*I like to cook the sweet potatoes in the microwave to make things easier.

4)  In a small bowl mix together flour, light brown sugar, pecans, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, salt, and butter and mix until crumbly.

5)  Fill each crust with cheesecake batter until full and then divide the crumble topping over the tarts.

6) Bake in 350 degree F oven for 17 minutes.  Let cool.

Makes 24 mini tarts.

Enjoy,

Gina

13 comments:

  1. These look so delish! If only I weren't so lazy about not only rolling out dough, but cutting it out with fancy edges, too! :D

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    1. You could use already rolled pie crust from the store, but shhh, you didn't hear that from me. Lol.

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  2. Lovely little tarts, pecan plus sweet potato is such a winning combination!

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  3. I cannot wait to make this!!! This is definitely a great recipe that I am very interested in tasting... I know I'll be addicted!

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  4. I am loving all of your Halloween themed posts and pictures! And how adorable are those homemade tart shells? Endless possibilities!

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  5. Gina,
    These little tarts are seaosnal perfect. I love sweet potatoes,but never thought of adding them to cheesecake. I bet these taste divine. by the way I just got a box from the get well Fairy! She wanted to make sure that I had a Happy Halloween, and boy will I ever with all of the cute wrappers, pics sprinkles, and and a precious mug! Can you see the big smile on my face?

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  6. Haha Gina. I laughed out loud. I too am a bit overwhelmed by all the pumpkin! I think these cheesecakes are the perfect way to ease into fall. Thank you for sharing them with us!

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  7. You are so funny, Gina. Those cheesecake tarts are a perfect fall treat! Love the pecan crust.
    I wish you a wonderful weekend!
    Angie

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  8. These sweet potato tarts are a refreshing break from the pumpkin frenzy and are a perfect representation of the season. Looking forward to seeing what the Queen has in store for the rest of October. Hope you are doing well!

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  9. Hi Gina! Cute, fun and yum!!! I missed you ;) I'm with you on the pumpkin overload...please don't lose any of your wonderful recipes, especially those that contain sugar, lol! I'm also looking forward to what you have in store for us this month, please don't be too scary ;)

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  10. Pumpkin is OK, but I much prefer sweet potatoes. These tarts look superb! Looking forward to the Halloween hijinks! ;-)

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  11. A dessert with potatoes! What a cool idea. I would love to try this.

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