Mini Ricotta Cheesecakes with Raspberries

I developed this recipe for these Mini Ricotta Cheesecakes while racking my brain for dessert recipes that are slightly less harmful to the waistline as the ones we have been having over the festive season. Let’s face it, my Meringue Roulade with cream and raspberries would hardly be seen on the front cover of Weight Watchers nor will you find my ice cream recipes anywhere near a health magazine and although they were delicious at the time, now is the time to pull the belt a little tighter and eat a little lighter, both on sugar and fat!
When you look at your average cheesecake, the calories are not always in the filling alone, but quietly hiding in the crust and the toppings too. Your average biscuit crust is made with biscuits that has butter in them already and then we still add butter and the toppings on cheesecakes can vary from sweet sugary coulis to chocolate swirls and drizzles of caramel. So instead of depriving yourself from cheesecakes altogether, there had to be a better, healthier option……
With my Mini Ricotta Cheesecakes I tried to save some calories on the base, the filling and the topping and the end result was a light, not overly sweet yet delicious summer dessert.

For the base I used phyllo pastry. I love working with phyllo, it is so versatile that I often use it for quick pies like my  Potato and Spinach Pie or desserts like this  Cheesecake in a neat little bundle! If you are trying to cut down on calories, you do not have to brush the phyllo with melted butter as indicated, but you can use non-stick spray for the same, but lighter effect. For 12 mini ricotta cheesecakes you also only need 3 sheets of phyllo so it is really a saver from all perspectives.
For these cheesecakes you can use low fat cottage cheese, creamed cottage cheese or ricotta cheese as I have done. Although ricotta is not  the lowest in calories, I had some available and it is still a better option than mascarpone or cream cheese. Let’s make them together, shall we?

Mini Ricotta Cheesecakes with raspberries

makes 12 mini cheesecakes

3 sheets of phyllo pastry
non-stick spray or 80gr butter – melted.
250gr ricotta cheese, drained
125ml condensed milk
2 eggs
juice of 1 lemon
finely grated zest of 1 lemon

Preheat oven to 180C.
Take 3 sheets of  phyllo and spray each sheet with the non-stick spray or brush with melted butter. Place sheets on top of each other and with a cookie cutter of stacking ring cut out 12 circles and place them in the bottom of your muffins pan.
For the filling:
Mix the lemon juice with the condensed milk until it thickens. Add the eggs and the lemon zest and mix through. Fold in the ricotta cheese and spoon into the phyllo shells. Bake for 10 minutes and remove from the oven. Serve with fresh raspberries or any other summer fruit of your choice!

More ways with Phyllo Pastry