In keeping with Halloween's age-old tradition of food on a stick (caramel apples and tootsie pops, anyone?) I present to you these sinfully delicious frozen cheesecake pops. Bite into one and the crackly candy shell shatters away to reveal a thick and creamy vanilla cheesecake. Aren't they so darn cute?
Making these little fellows is very straightforward, if a bit time-consuming. Just be sure to leave yourself plenty of downtime for freezing. I cut the recipe in half because it made a gargantuan quantity, but you could easily double it back up for a crowd. And you don't have to decorate them, of course, but it adds to the fun! I picked up the lollipop sticks and ribbon yesterday at Michael's crafts---my Mecca!---along with a bunch of other fab stuff. Keep checking back for more Halloween insanity!
Frozen with Fright Cheesecake Pops
Recipe adapted from Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey by Jill O'Connor
2 1/2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cups sugar
1/8 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 large eggs (crack one of the eggs into a bowl, beat it, then measure it and use only half)
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/8 cup heavy cream
boiling water as needed
About twenty 8-inch lollipop sticks
For the candy coating:
1 cup dark chocolate chips
1 cup white chocolate chips
3 tablespoons vegetable shortening
icing pens such as these, or make your own colored icing using confectioners sugar, water, and coloring
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. With a mixer on low, combine cream cheese, sugar, flour and salt. Beat in eggs and egg yolks until smooth, then mix in vanilla and heavy cream. Pour the mixture into a 9 x 13 baking pan, then set that pan inside a larger lipped baking sheet or roasting pan. Place both pans on the middle rack of the oven then fill the outer pan to the top with boiling water; you've just created a water bath for your cheesecake. This will help it cook evenly and smoothly without burning. Bake until barely golden brown on top, about 35-45 minutes (though for some reason mine took a full hour).
Let the cheesecake cool to room temperature and then freeze, at least three hours or overnight. Scoop the cheesecake into rounds about the size of ping pong balls, shove the sticks into them, and freeze until firm again, about an hour. Meanwhile, in a double boiler or in the microwave, melt one cup of dark chips with 1 tablespoon shortening, and 1 cup white chips with two tablespoons shortening; the shortening helps make it runny enough to evenly coat the cheesecake. To create the coating, just hold a pop over the chocolate mixture and use a spoon to dribble the melted chocolate over the cheesecake ball. Shake off excess, return to freezer until hard, then decorate as desired. You can keep them in the freezer or just in the fridge until ready to serve. They're devilish AND delicious!