Sunday, August 5, 2018

Rolo Cheesecake Bars

Chocolate, caramel and cheesecake! These are easy to make, but still impressive. I couldn't find mini Rolos, so I just bought regular ones and cut them in half. I also topped the pieces with a half of one. I found this recipe at Hugs & Cookies.

Rolo Cheesecake Bars

3 c. graham cracker crumbs
1 c. sugar
1 c. butter, melted

2 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese
2 eggs
1 c. sugar
¼ c. flour
8 oz. Rolo minis, unwrapped

1/2 c. butter
6 oz. chocolate chips
4 t. light corn syrup
Preheat oven to 350°. Stir all crust ingredients together and press into a 9x13-inch pan lined with nonstick foil. 
Bake for 7-10 minutes and cool. 
For filling, beat cream cheese. Once smooth, add sugar and mix. Add eggs one at a time. Add flour and mix until smooth. Stir in Rolos. Bake for 30-35 minutes.
Place in refrigerator to chill.
For the glaze, melt butter and chocolate chips.Stir in corn syrup. Pour over chilled bars and refrigerate overnight.

Monday, July 2, 2018

Blueberry Cheesecake Crumb Cake

Bursting blueberries in every bite! I made this coffee cake that I found on Oh My Goodness Chocolate Desserts (even though it's not a chocolate dessert). I baked it a little longer than I should have and the crust was crunchy when I served it the day after making it, but the day after that it had softened. I'm bummed that I forgot to drizzle it with the glaze since it would have been prettier. 

Blueberry Cheesecake Crumb Cake

Crumb Cake:

3 1/3 c. flour
2 t. baking powder
¼ t. salt
½ c. cold butter, cut in cubes
Grated zest from 1 lemon (optional)
1/3 c. light brown sugar
1/3 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 t. vanilla

Blueberry Cheesecake Filling:

8 oz. mascarpone
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
½ c. + 2 T. caster sugar
2 T. corn starch
2 eggs
1 t. vanilla
1 2/3 c. blueberries


½ c. powdered sugar
2-3  t. milk

Preheat the oven to 350°. Line the bottom of 9-inch spring-form pan with parchment paper, spray bottom and sides of the pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl stir together flour, baking powder, salt, brown sugar, sugar and lemon zest. Add butter to dry ingredients mixture. Using mixer or hands, mix it until it’s grainy.

Add eggs and vanilla and mix to combine. The mixture should be crumbly. Press about 2/3 of the mixture in the bottom and side (about 1 ½ inch height) of the pan. Place the pan and remaining crumbs in the fridge.

To make the filling mix together cream cheese, mascarpone, vanilla, sugar and corn starch just to combine. Add eggs and mix just to combine, being careful not to over-mix.

Pour half of the cheesecake mixture in chilled crust. Scatter about 2/3 cup of blueberries over the filling. Spread remaining cheesecake mixture. Top with blueberries and remaining crumbs.

Bake until golden brown and toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 65-75 minutes. If it starts browning too much, tent the top with aluminum foil.

Make the glaze by stirring together powdered sugar and milk or cream. If it’s too thin, add powdered sugar. If it’s too thick, add more milk. Drizzle on cooled crumb cake. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving. Overnight refrigeration is ideal.

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Philly Cheesesteak Cups

I threw this together for a simple meal. It would make a great appetizer or party food too. I love how easy using frozen puff pastry is. I found this recipe on High Heels and Grills

Philly Cheesesteak Cups
1 lb. rib eye steak thinly sliced
1 T. olive oil
1/2 med. onion chopped
1 green pepper chopped
1 c. mushroom chopped
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. pepper
1/3 c. heavy cream
1/3 c. milk
1 pkg. puff pastry thawed
1/2 c. provolone cheese grated

Preheat your oven to 400°.

Pour olive oil into warm skillet, add chopped onion and peppers. Sautè on medium high heat for about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and sautè for another 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Cook beef, stirring frequently for about a minute or two. The meat is thinly sliced enough that it only takes about a minute to cook through. Immediately add the pepper mixture back to the skillet with the beef. Add seasonings, cream, and milk. Bring to a light boil, stirring constantly just until thickened. Remove from heat.

Spray each cup in a muffin pan with non-stick. Place about a 3-4 inch square of pastry dough in each muffin cup. Add about 1/4 cup of cheesesteak mix to each cup.

Bake for about 10 minutes. Place a small bunch of provolone cheese on each cheesesteak cup and continue to bake for another 3 minutes.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Utah Local: Rico Cocina y Tequila Bar

I wanted to find somewhere different to have dinner with my children, but it had to have food that all of them would eat. It's not easy to find a restaurant like that by just driving around and stopping somewhere due to one picky child (who is a teenager). I also wanted a fun atmosphere. I showed them the online menu at Rico Cocina y Tequila Bar and they all said they'd eat something there, so away we went.

We drove around the warehouses and old buildings in the area near Kilby Court and Ruby Snap Cookies and arrived at Rico Cocina at 545 W. 700 S in Salt Lake City.  It was easy to spot the colorful outdoor patio area, the sign and the cool, old painted truck in the front.

This used to be Frida Bistro, but this new restaurant has lower prices than they used to. Prices and descriptions of menu items are on their website. We love chips and salsa, but at $10, we didn't order them. 

Alex ordered Pollo Rebosado en Salsa de Cacahaute, chicken stuffed with cream cheese in a peanut butter and guajillo pasilla sauce for $16. I got to try some. It was a bit bland for my taste, but sure made a pretty presentation.
My picky daughter ordered a Carne Asada Burrito, $12, without the sauce that it usually comes smothered in. She decided that was probably a mistake since it needed "rice or sauce or something", which is why it comes with sauce normally, I'm sure.
My other daughter and I shared the Carne Asada Alambre plate, $16. It said it came with rice, but I forgot that when it was served without it. I even mentioned to my kids that I would have liked it with rice. Even without it, it was really good, and I don't say that about just anything. The grilled beef was tender and flavorful. I usually try something different every time I go back to a restaurant, but I liked this one so much that I might have to order it again. My daughter liked it too, and so did my son, who ended up eating what we didn't. 
A couple of the other plates that looked good to me are the Enchilada de Pollo con Salsa de Achiote y Mangos $13 and the Quesadilla de Huitlacoche $12. They also have vegetarian and vegan entrees on the menu.

The walls are painted different colors and there are lots of fun pieces of art on the walls and everywhere.

There was a glass door from inside the restaurant to another connected building. It was made to look like different houses in different colors. I asked what it was and the waitress said that it's the warehouse where they make the Rico chips and other products that they sell. Awesome looking warehouse! I wanted to go in and explore, but it's not for customers.

I thought this sign outside the warehouse was funny.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Pepperoni, Mozzarella & Broccoli Pasta Salad

I have been making this for a very long time and can't believe I haven't blogged it before. My family got this recipe when my sister Heather made it in Home Ec or Foods class at school and then she made it for us at home and we loved it. Now I make it for my family.

The dressing has the right amount of tang and the veggies give it a nice crunch. This is one of my favorite pasta salad recipes and now it can be yours.

Pepperoni, Mozzarella & Broccoli Pasta Salad

1/3 c. oil
2 T. lemon juice
1 T. cider vinegar
1/2 t. salt
Pepper to taste
1/2 t. dried oregano

1/2 lb. rigatoni (or other pasta)
1 1/2 c. broccoli florets
6 oz. pepperoni, cut into pieces
3/4 c. green pepper, chopped
3 T. black olives, sliced
1/4 c. red onion, chopped
1/4 c. carrot, chopped
3 oz. mozzarella, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
2 T. Parmesan cheese, grated

Cook pasta in salted boiling water until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain; rinse with cool water. 

Break broccoli into small pieces. Place in microwaveable dish and add 1/2 cup water. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on HIGH for about 3 minutes. 

Put pepperoni, green pepper, olives, onion, carrot and mozzarella in a large bowl. Add broccoli and pasta and toss to combine.

Whisk dressing ingredients together. Add to salad and toss to blend. Serve immediately or refrigerate to serve later. 

Friday, April 20, 2018

Caramel Frosted Fudgy Chocolate Cookies

Most of the things I imagine look so much better in my head than they turn out. Okay, like everything. And these cookies are no exception. I knew what flavors I wanted to combine and wanted it to look pretty like from a bakery. I took different parts from different recipes and combined them for this sticky, chocolaty cookie. They didn't look perfect, but they were rich and delicious. I especially liked them after microwaving them for a quick 6-8 seconds. Mmmm melty goodness!

In addition to the recipe I put together below, I cut out some chocolate circles and put them on top.  After I did it, I noticed they just look like chocolate chips pressed in upside down, which would have been faster. 

Caramel Frosted Fudgy Chocolate Cookies
3/4 c. unsalted butter, softened 
3/4 c. light brown sugar, packed
1/4 c. granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 t. vanilla extract
1 (3.7 - 3.9-oz.) pkg. instant chocolate pudding mix
1/4 c. cocoa
2 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
Pinch salt
1 (12-oz.) pkg. chocolate chips
Caramel Frosting:
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. butter
1/8 c. milk
1 - 1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
Caramel Drizzle:
7 oz. caramels
1/4 c. evaporated milk (or water) 

Dipping Chocolate
Using paddle attachment, in mixing bowl combine the butter, sugars, eggs, vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed until creamed. After scraping down the sides of the bowl, add the pudding mix, and cocoa, and mix on low just until combined.

Add the flour, baking soda, and salt, and mix on low just until combined, about 1 minute.

Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the chocolate chips, and mix on low only until blended.

Using a large cookie scoop or a 1/4-cup measuring cup form into balls of dough, and flatten slightly. Place mounds on a tray and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to 5 days. (Refrigerating is important for the cookies to keep their shape.)

Preheat oven to 350º, Spray cookie sheets with cooking spray. Place cookie dough on baking sheet, at least 2 inches apart and bake for about 10 minutes, or until edges have set and tops are just set and look slightly underdone.  Cool cookies on cookie sheet for about 10 minutes before serving. 

In a saucepan, mix brown sugar, butter and milk over low heat until brown sugar dissolves. 

Increase heat to medium and cook for 3-6 minutes without stirring until the middle is bubbling or until it looks amber.

Pour into a mixer bowl and let cool. Add powdered sugar about 1/4 cup at a time with beaters going until frosting is as thick as desired. 

Caramel Drizzle:
Combine caramels and evaporated milk (or water) in microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 1 minute. Stir. Microwave more if needed, just until caramels are melted. Stir until smooth.

Spread frosting on cooled cookies. Dip one side into melted dipping chocolate. Garnish with chocolate circles or chips if desired. Drizzle with caramel.  

Monday, March 26, 2018

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Mini Cheesecakes

My last post was a cheesecake and I didn't realize that until I started putting this one together. I made these for the first time the other day. I love peanut butter pie and these cheesecakes at Sweet Spicy Kitchen looked similar. They're pretty and they are mini, which I always love.

On her blog, Dragana said that she used baking cup liners that are 2.55 inch in diameter and 2.15 inch in height. My spring-form pan is mini muffin sized (much smaller) so I made 12 of them into the very mini cheesecakes and then put the rest into a small spring-form pan.

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Mini Cheesecakes

1 c. graham crackers crumbs
4 T. melted butter
10 oz. semisweet chopped chocolate
1 ½ c. heavy cream, at room temperature
12 oz. cream cheese, softened
½ c. powdered sugar
½ t. vanilla extract
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
½ c. powdered sugar
⅔ c. peanut butter
⅔ c. heavy cream
½ t. vanilla extract
6 oz. semisweet chopped chocolate
6 T. heavy cream, at room temperature
¼ t. oil
Mini chocolate chips
Peanuts, chopped

Prepare 12 larger paper baking cups or mini spring-form pan. Put graham crackers in the
food processor until they are fine crumbs.

Add melted butter and stir well. Spread evenly in the paper baking cups and press with a
solid object, like a glass to make solid layer. Set aside.

Melt chocolate following the instructions on the package. Add heavy cream and mix well.
Set aside. In a medium sized dish mix cream cheese and powdered sugar with an mixer,
at a minimum speed, for about a minute.

Add vanilla and melted chocolate and mix until well combined. Spread evenly over the
graham cracker layer, with a spoon. Leave it in the fridge to cool.

In a medium sized dish mix cream cheese and powdered sugar with an mixer at a
minimum speed, add vanilla, peanut butter and heavy cream.

Mix until smooth. Take the cheesecake out of the fridge and spread evenly over
chocolate cheesecake filling. Put it in the fridge.

Melt chocolate. Add heavy cream and oil and stir well. Take the cheesecake out of the fridge. Pour chocolate topping over the cheesecake with a spoon. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts and mini chocolate chips. Refrigerate overnight before serving

Rolo Cheesecake Bars

Chocolate, caramel and cheesecake! These are easy to make, but still impressive. I couldn't find mini Rolos, so I just bought regular on...