Sunday, December 22, 2013

Red Velvet Cheesecake cookies with white chocolate drizzle

I want to share a new recipe I tried out this past week for the Real Women Eat's Christmas Tea.  We were doing a gift exchange, but with a twist.  The "gift" had to be a baked item, and it was supposed to be something we have never made before.  So, my collection of recipes just wouldn't do this time. Off to Pinterest I go.  I found Two Peas and Their Pod's site where these beauties were.  She had me at "red velvet" and when I saw these were cookies, all the better!  (I'm such a cookie monster!) These cookies should come with a warning... they are very rich.  LOL.   They're not hard, but they do take a little bit of time investment, but oh, so worth it!   So here goes....

Red Velvet Cheesecake Cookies


Cookies:
  • 1 box red velvet cake mix (I used Duncan Hines)
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cheesecake filling:

  • 4 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

White chocolate drizzle:

  • 1 1/2 cups white chocolate chips, melted

Directions:

To make cookies, combine cake mix and flour. Whisk until clumps disappear before placing in mixing bowl. Mix together cake mix, flour, eggs, oil and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap. The dough will be oily.  And I really mean oily!   The recipe said to refrigerate for 2 hours.  I had running around to do, so they stayed in there a lot longer than the two hours (and were fine)

To make the cheesecake filling, combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth. Using a teaspoon, scoop out cheesecake filling and place on a plate. Continue scooping out cheesecake filling into teaspoon balls until you have 10. Place plate in the freezer and freeze for at least two hours. Again, more than two hours didn't hurt. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper-  or a silicone baking mat if you have one.  I don't. 

To assemble the cookies, take about 1/4 cup of red velvet cookie dough and flatten in your hands.(I used one of those ice-cream-looking scoops that I use for cupcake batter)   Place a teaspoon of cheesecake filling in the center and wrap the cookie dough around the filling. Gently roll into a ball and place on prepared baking sheet. Scoop onto lightly greased or parchment lined baking sheets. Only bake 3 cookies at a time. The cookies are large and will spread.  Trust me, she knows what she's talking about.  So, really, only three at a time.  Ya, hear??

Bake for 11-13 minutes or until the cookies begin to crackle. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Remove from baking sheet to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.

Melt the white chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl or over a double-boiler. Drizzle the white chocolate over the cooled cookies. Let the cookies set until the chocolate hardens. 

Note: I bought the white chocolate chips, but ended up using the white candy coating wafers instead thinking it would harden quicker.  I didn't see where I saved any time using the wafers so go ahead and use the white chocolate chips!  



These cookies are really rich and I doubt you'll be finishing them in a day, so store in the frige.  My husband ate one and said he felt like he had eaten half a dozen...THAT rich. 


Saturday, October 26, 2013

Re-Use that Ketchup Bottle

I love honey.  My sister gave me a gallon of honey recently.  The gallon jug isn't easy to handle, so I wanted to pour it into something more "user friendly".  I tried those cute bear bottles, but those don't hold enough, and I end up collapsing the flimsy plastic bottle after several fill-ups.  What to do...   enter the ketchup bottle!

This is probably not a new idea, but it's new to me, so allow me to live in my fantasy world and think that I, alone, had this wonderful idea.  At least for a little bit.  

I just washed out the ketchup bottle (thank goodness there were no lingering smells.  As much as I love ketchup, I don't like to co-mingle it with honey)  and viola!  My new honey dispenser.   Since it's a no-drip cap, it's perfect for the honey too!

So, tell me, what have you repurposed?  I'd love to hear.  Please share in the comments, or if you have done a blog post, leave a link there so we can all come visit!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Make your own Fruit Flavored Waters

Ok, I'll admit it.  I'm behind the curve on this one.  Oh sure, I've been drinking "water with lemon" for years. But my mind was totally blown when I saw (sensory overload) all the different fruit water options!   I found some strawberries and kiwis at Aldi's for ultra-cheap.   The strawberries were from Wish Farms, and honestly they tasted like someone had injected pure sugar into them!  I couldn't resist snacking on some as I'm cutting them for my water. (I like it that Wish Farms is a local USA company too!)


My drink of choice was strawberry and kiwi.  But think about the options....
Strawberry/blueberry 
Pineapple/peach, mango 
Blueberry/raspberry
Orange slices
Watermelon
Cantaloupe/Grape
Peach/Nectarine
Plum/Apple
Raspberry/Lime
You could go absolutely wild!!!
Oh!  and at the health food store, I found a chocolate flavored stevia.  Mix that with a spearmint and woozers!  Chocolate mint water!  Yummm.... 

First I just put the fruit into a glass with water.  Since I liked it so much, I wanted it at the ready in the frige for the rest of the week so in comes...

This is perfect for my fruit.  There's a "tube" that screws into the lid. I just poured in my water filled the tube with my cut up fruit, screwed it back on the lid  and I was good to go.  

You can get one at Amazon.com here which I'm excited about, because that one is cheaper than I paid for mine!  If you want a really full flavor, do your water a day before.  The flavors are out of this world!  That's what I did and it made such a difference in the "flavor level".  
Do you do your own flavored waters?  I'd love to hear what you do.  Please leave me a comment and share with us all. 

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