Freezer Friendly Eggnog Cheesecake or Cheesecake Tartlets
Get ready for the holidays by keeping this festive cheesecake in the freezer for impromptu holiday entertaining or unforgettable hostess gifts. The classic flavor of holiday eggnog brightens rich cheesecake, making it a terrific addition to holiday parties. You can bake as 10 individual tartlets or in a 7 or 8-inch springform pan instead. Either way, wrap extra portions well and freeze for up to 4 months. Thaw and enjoy anytime. You can also freeze a whole cheesecake to thaw and enjoy later. What better holiday hostess gift than an Eggnog Cheesecake?
3 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
2/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs
3/4 cup commercial eggnog (alcohol-free)
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/2 teaspoons rum extract
1 teaspoon nutmeg, divided
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Use a food processor to pulverize graham crackers to crumbs, add cinnamon and pulse to combine. Mix in melted butter. Press graham crumb mix into the bottom and up the sides of a 7 or 8-inch springform pan or in the bottom and up the sides of 10 (4 1/2-inch) tartlet pans with removable bottoms. Bake crust(s) for about 8 minutes or until set. Remove from oven and set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees F. and place a large baking dish 3/4 full of water in bottom of oven (the moisture from the pan will help prevent cheesecake from cracking).
In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar, and rum extract with an electric mixer until smooth, light, fluffy, and lump-free. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until blended, beat in 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg. Quickly beat in the eggnog and sour cream just until blended. Pour into prepared crust(s), sprinkle tops with remaining nutmeg.
Bake for 1 hour for a whole cheesecake, or 50 minutes for tartlets. Turn off oven but do not open the door for another hour. Transfer cake to a wire rack to cool before covering and chilling in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours before serving or freezing.
Wrap tartlets, whole cheesecake, or cheesecake portions in plastic wrap and/or foil and freeze. (For tartlets I wrap individually in plastic wrap then place several in gallon sized zip-top storage bags). Allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes for tartlets or 1 1/2 hours for a whole cheesecake before serving. Alternatively thaw in the refrigerator overnight then serve.