Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Vermont Maple Walnut Bacon Cheddar Cheesecake

Vermont Maple Walnut Bacon Cheddar Cheesecake
2 cups ground rice chex cereal
4 TBS brown sugar
1/3 cup chopped crisp bacon
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
2 TBS bacon grease
3 TBS Vermont Maple Syrup
2 TBS butter, melted

Cheesecake filling:
2 (8 ozs) packages of cream cheese
16 ozs ricotta cheese (whole milk)
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (one block) ( I used Cabot Alpine Cheddar)
3/4 cups sour cream
1 1/4 cups white sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla
2 TBS flour

1 cup heavy cream
3/4 cups Vermont maple syrup

1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1/3 cup chopped crisp bacon
1/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup dark chocolate


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 10 inch spring form pan  (bottom and around sides)
2.  In large bowl add ingredients to crust.  With fork mix well to incorporate well.  Spread mixture into pan evenly across bottom and along sides, pressing firm.  Bake in oven 10 mins.  Remove
3.  In food processor or large bowl with electric mixer, add cheeses.  Pulse or mix well until fully blended.  Add sugar, eggs and cream.  Mix well.  Add vanilla and flour, Mix.  Scrap sides to make sure everything gets mix together.  Pour into spring form pan on top of crust. 
4.  Bake in oven on middle rack for approx. 55-60 mins.  Place an oven safe dish filled with water on bottom shelf.  This will help keep moisture in oven and prevent cake from cracking.
You can stick a toothpick in center of cake to see if it is done.  Toothpick should come out clean,  not wet. 
5.  When cake is done shut off oven.  Let cake sit in oven with door cracked for 1 hour.  Remove and let cool completely.  Refrigerate for few hours, or overnight before serving.  Remove side of spring form pan.
6.  To make glaze:  In medium size pan over med/high heat add cream and syrup.  Let boil.  Stir and continue to boil for 15 mins.  Add nuts, stir.  Add glaze to top of cheesecake. 
7.  To make chocolate glaze:  Melt chocolate in microwavable bowl.  Heat for approx. 1 min.  Remove and stir well.  Add 1 TBS bacon grease, stir.  Drizzle over cheesecake.
8.  Drizzle sour cream.  Sprinkle bacon crumbles and chopped walnuts.

Note:  I add my glaze and sour cream in little squirt bottle.  Then I squeeze across cake.

Serves 12

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Sleetball Cookies

These are my Sleetball Cookies.  When I think of winter, I think about the ,sometimes dry, wintery mix of sleet and snow, we used to get, up North in Connecticut.  Because of our State being well prepared for winter, our roads were always cared for, in a timely manor.  Trucks would plow and salt the roads to make driving more safe.  I created this fun recipe in remembrance from my past.  The cookie is dry representing our dry cold snow.  Makes for a great coffee cookie.  They are dipped into melted chocolate representing the muddy mess that would accumulate.  Then cookies are sprinkled with sea salt and sprinkled with a dusting of powdered sugar.
2 cups flour ( I use my gluten free blend)
1/4 cup sugar
2 sticks butter, softened
2 cups walnuts, chopped fine
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups dark chocolate morsels
1/4 cup sea salt
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2.  In large mixing bowl add flour, sugar, butter, walnuts and vanilla.  Mix well until completely combined.  Roll about 1 tsp size ball.  Place on slightly greased cookie sheet.  Bake for approx. 18-20 mins.  Let cool
3.  Melt chocolate in microwave safe bowl in 30 sec intervals, stirring in between until chocolate is melted.
4.  Dip top of cookies into chocolate, only a few at a time, then place on clean wax paper.  Sprinkle with sea salt.  Dip remaining cookies.  Make sure to sprinkle sea salt before chocolate sets.
5.  When chocolate cools and sets sprinkle powdered sugar over top of cookies.
Makes approx. 45

Sea Salt Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Cookies

1 cup sugar
1 TBS vanilla extract
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
4 ozs cream cheese, room temperature
2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 cup caramel sauce, room temperature
8 ozs dark chocolate morsels, melted
1/4 cup sea salt


1.  In mixer cream together sugar, vanilla, butter and cream cheese for approx 2 mins with mixing whisk, or use hand mixer.
2.  Add flour and salt.  Mix well to incorporate. Approx 1-2 mins
3.  Remove from mixing bowl.  Knead for 2 mins.  Shape into roll, approx 2 inches wide.  Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 20 mins.  Dough can be refrigerated overnight.
4.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease large cookie sheet.  Slice dough approx. 1/8 - 1/4 thick.  Bake 10-12 mins.  Remove from oven and cool completely.  Repeat process for remaining dough.
5.  Place cookies on wax paper.  Drizzle caramel sauce over top of cookie.
6.  Melt chocolate in microwave safe bowl in microwave for 30 second intervals, stirring in between.  Drizzle over top of caramel.  Quickly sprinkle sea salt on top of chocolate before chocolate starts to set.  Let toppings set before stacking to serve or wrap.