Thursday, December 3, 2009

Christmas Cookie Bake Sale

My son's preschool class is having their annual Christmas Cookie bake sale tomorrow. I think this will be one of the only times I actually get to send something homemade with him to school. I made of few of my favorites - chocolate chip cookies and peanut butter/ritz sandwiches dipped in white chocolate (yummy!)

I also decided to try a new recipe. Now normally I am a chocolately or chewy cookie kinda girl - but I found a recipe for Jam-Filled Cookies and something about there being cream cheese in the dough made me want to try them.
I'm so glad I did! They turned out great. I like that they were a softer shortbread cookie and the warm strawberry jam was delicious. And they look so festive too!

Easy Jam Filled Cookies (Kraft)

1 - 8oz. package cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. butter
2/3 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
2-1/2 c. flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/3 c. walnuts (I used pecans) finely chopped
3/4 c. preserves (I used strawberry)
1 tsp. powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 350 F. Beat cream cheese, butter and sugar in large bowl until well blended. Separate 1 of the eggs; set egg white aside for later use. Add yolk, second (whole) egg and vanilla to cream cheese mixture; mix well. Gradually add combined flour and baking powder, beating until well blended.
Divide dough into 4 equal pieces. Roll each piece into 12x1 inch log; place 2 inches apart, on large ungreased baking sheet. Use fingers to make depression down length of each log. Beat reserved egg white with fork; brush over dough. Sprinkle with walnuts. Fill depressions with preserves, using about 3 T. preserves in each log.
Bake 25-27 minutes or until edges are slightly browned. Let cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Cut each log into 12 equal pieces.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Cheesecake

I had the privilege this week to make birthday treats for one of my co-workers. She told me she loves anything pumpkin or chocolate and she really likes cheesecake. I went in search of a brownie-type cheesecake and I came across one on The recipe is called Chocolate Chip Brownie Cheesecake. I switched the chocolate chips for peanut butter cups and added peanut butter frosting to top it off. It was yummy!!!
Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Cheesecake

1 - (19.5 oz) package fudge brownie mix
3 - 8oz packages cream cheese, softened
1 can sweetened condensed milk
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup chocolate chips (I used chopped peanut butter cups)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease bottom only of 9-inch springform pan. Prepare brownie mix as directed. Spread evenly in prepared pan. Bake 35 minutes or until set.
In large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy. Gradually add in sweetened condensed milk. Add eggs and vanilla; mix well. Stir in chocolate. Pour over brownie in pan.
Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees F. Bake 50 minutes or until set. Cool. Chill thoroughly. Remove side of springform pan. Garnish as desired.
Peanut Butter Frosting

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter
3 Tablespoons Milk
2 cups powdered sugar
Beat together the butter and peanut butter until smooth. Mix in sugar. Mixture will be thick. Add milk one tablespoon at a time. Beat at least 3 minutes until fluffy.