Sunday, August 26, 2012

Mini Blueberry Cheesecakes

A couple weeks ago, I had some extra blueberries to use up, so I used part of my mom's blueberry cream pie recipe and part of a cheesecake recipe to create these little desserts.
 Mini Blueberry Cheesecakes

1 cup blueberries, divided
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons water
3/4 cup crushed graham crackers
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 teaspoon sugar
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

In a saucepan, stir the cornstarch and sugar together. Add 2/3 cup blueberries, the lemon zest, and the lemon juice. Cook over low heat, mashing and stirring until mixture thickens and clears. Turn off heat and add the last 1/3 cup of blueberries.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
While the blueberry mixture cools, melt the butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Add the crushed graham crackers and 1 teaspoon sugar. Stir. Press the mixture into the bottom of muffin cup liners. I used the bottom of a glass dish to press the mixture down.

Top with a tablespoon of the blueberry mixture.

With a mixer, beat together the cream cheese, 1/3 cup sugar, egg, and vanilla. Spoon over blueberry mixture. Bake about 20 minutes or until slightly puffed.

When ready to serve, top with some Cool Whip and a couple extra blueberries.

Yields: about 10 mini cheesecakes

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Brownie Bites

I used this recipe while making the Olympic cupcakes. They were pretty tasty, but I'd recommend eating them pretty quickly as they tend to dry out after a few days.

Brownie Bites

1 cup butter
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup flour
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place packing cups in mini cupcake pans. Melt butter in large bowl in microwave-safe bowl. Stir in cocoa until smooth. Add sugar and brown sugar. Mix well.

Beat eggs with a fork in a small dish. Add beaten eggs and vanilla to chocolate mixture. Blend well. Fill muffin cups about 2/3 full.

Bake 15-18 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely on wire rack.

Yields: about 50 mini brownie bites

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Summertime No-Bake Dessert: Grown-up Sundae

This creation was inspired by a recipe I saw in Rachel Ray's Every Day magazine. The original recipe was called Affogato with Orange. Since I didn't have everything required, I decided to do my own version of a grown-up sundae. This one's for adults only!
Grown-up Sundae

Kahlua (coffee liqueur)
vanilla bean ice cream
orange zest
hot chocolate
chocolate shavings (I used some milk chocolate candy I had on hand and shaved it with a knife, but you could also use bittersweet chocolate)

Pour one tablespoon Kahlua into the bottom of a dessert dish. Add two scoops of vanilla bean ice cream. Sprinkle with orange zest and nutmeg (use as much or as little as you like). Pour two tablespoons of hot chocolate (yes, hot) over the ice cream. Decorate with chocolate shavings.


Sunday, August 5, 2012

Summertime No Bake Dessert: Pink Lemonade Cheesecake

In the heat of this summer, I searched for a dessert that wouldn't require turning on the oven. Here's what I created.

Pink Lemonade Cheesecake

one prepared graham cracker crust
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 teaspoons Crystal Light Pink Lemonade drink mix
1/4 cup cold milk
8 oz. Cool Whip

Start with a graham cracker crust. You can make your own of course, but in this heat, who wants to do that?

In a mixer, beat the cream cheese until it is smooth. Then add the milk and the drink mix, beating again until smooth. Fold in half of the Cool Whip and spoon into the crust.

Refrigerate for one hour. Add remaining Cool Whip on top. Refrigerate for another three hours or until firm.