Sunday, December 14, 2014

In Search of Christmas Spirit - Day 13

Day 13:  Baking - Take Two

It's Sunday night and I'm finally home.  There's a fire in the wood stove, all of our activities/duties are finished for the day, and there's a bottle of white wine in the fridge calling my name -- J-e-n, J-e-n...

I think the most Christmassy thing I can do tonight is answer the call from the fridge and enjoy a glass of wine by the light of the Christmas tree.  And what could be better with a glass of wine than something sweet.  Today I baked cheesecake cookies for my daughter's cast party and after the scolding I received from my kids for donating all of the last cookies I baked, I learned my lesson and saved a few cheesecakes cookies at home.

These are cheesecake cookies.  I guess they're officially more of a square or bar than a cookie, but my mom's old friend, Sue Korpella, who was kind enough to share the recipe with us, called them cookies, so cookies they are!  I chose to leave them plain today, but you can use food coloring to color the cheesecake layer red or green to up the Christmassy factor.  However you choose to make them, they are delicious!

And without further ado, here is Sue's recipe...

Sue Korpella's Cheesecake Cookies

For the bottom layer:

5 tbsp. cold butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup flour
1/4 cup nuts (I usually use walnuts)

Grease an 8" square pan.  Mix brown sugar and flour.  Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal.  Stir in nuts.  Reserve 1 cup flour mixture and press remaining mixture into pan.  Bake at 350° for 12-15 minutes, until just beginning to turn golden.

For the cheesecake layer:

1/2 cup sugar
1 8 oz. block cream cheese, softened
1 egg
2 tbsp. milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Blend ingredients together (coloring if so desired) and pour onto baked crust.  Top with remaining crumb mixture.  Bake at 350° for 25 minutes.  Cool to room temperature and chill before slicing and serving.  Then pour yourself a glass of white wine, put a cheesecake cookie on a plate and sit yourself down by the fire.  You've been working hard!!  You deserve it!!

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