Caramel Chocolate Cheesecake


* 3/4 cup toasted wheat germ

* 2 packages (8 ounces each) reduced-fat cream cheese

* 3/4 cup sugar

* 1/3 cup baking cocoa

* 4 egg whites

* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

* 36 pecan halves

* 3 tablespoons fat-free caramel ice cream topping


* Coat 36 miniature muffin cups with cooking spray; generously coat each with wheat germ. Set aside.

* In large a bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add cocoa; mix well. Beat in eggs and vanilla just until combined. Spoon 4 teaspoons into each muffin cup.

* Bake at 350° for 13-16 minutes or until set. Cool in pans for 10 minutes before removing to wire racks. Cool for 30 minutes and refrigerate. (Cheesecake may sink in the center upon cooling.)

* To serve, top each with a pecan half. Microwave caramel topping on high for 10 seconds or until soft. Spoon 1/4 teaspoon over each. Yield: 3 dozen.