Butterscotch Chip Cookies

I recently spent a day with a local hunting guide driving around all sorts of places south of Rawlins looking at historic homesteads, stage stops, and barns. Before the trip, I asked the guide what sort of baked goods he’d like for the drive, and butterscotch chip cookies were at the top of his list. These cookies were the perfect thing to keep us going as we tromped through places people hadn’t walked in years!

I found two buttons and a snap at a 1919 homestead!

I found two buttons and a snap at a 1919 homestead!

This cookie dough does have a chill time, so it’s good for if you need cookies to go in the morning – prepare the dough the night before, then just slice and bake in the morning!

img_7549Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugars on medium speed.

img_7541Add the egg and vanilla, then the salt.

img_7542On low speed, add the flour 1/2 cup at the time.

img_7543Fold in the baking soda, cornstarch, and butterscotch chips by hand.

img_7544Either cover the dough in the bowl or place it on plastic wrap and shape into a log (like slice and bake dough you can buy in the dairy/eggs section of your supermarket) and wrap up tight. Refrigerate at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.

img_7545Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Spoon or slice cookie dough onto the lined sheets.

img_7546 img_7547Bake 10-12 minutes, cool on the pans 2 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool.

img_7548

Delicious!

Butterscotch Chip Cookies

From Gal on a Mission.

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugars on medium speed. Add the egg and vanilla, then the salt. On low speed, add the flour 1/2 cup at the time. Fold in the baking soda, cornstarch, and butterscotch chips by hand.

Either cover the dough in the bowl or place it on plastic wrap and shape into a log (like slice and bake dough you can buy in the dairy/eggs section of your supermarket) and wrap up tight. Refrigerate at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Spoon or slice cookie dough onto the lined sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes, cool on the pans 2 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool.

Posted in Dessert | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Pear Crisp Cheesecake

This is a pretty amazing cheesecake. The cheesecake part itself is super creamy and light, and then you add the fruit crumble and… perfection! It just shares that one downside of most cheesecakes, that it needs to chill overnight, so be sure to bake it while you still have one dessert’s-worth of something else to get you through the wait!

img_7540Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 7 ounces Biscoff cookie crumbs, or cinnamon graham cracker crumb if you can’t find Biscoffs (1/2 a box of grahams)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted

Filling:

  • 24 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

Topping:

  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened and cut into small cubes
  • 2 medium pears, chopped into bite-size pieces

To prepare the crust, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Stir together the cookie crumbs and butter until well mixed, then press evenly into the bottom of a 9″ springform pan.

img_7530Bake for 15 minutes, then remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.

Not very visibly different, but that's ok!

Not very visibly different, but that’s ok!

To make the filling, first combine the cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl and beat on medium speed until smooth.

img_7531Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each.

img_7532Mix in the vanilla and cinnamon.

img_7534Finally, mix in the sour cream, then spread evenly in the prepared crust. Set aside to make the topping.

img_7535For the topping, combine the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl. Use a pastry blender, fork, or your hands to mix the butter into the dry goods until the the butter is well distributed and has just small clumps throughout.

Spread the chopped pears over the cheesecake.

img_7536Sprinkle the prepared oat mixture on top of the pears.

img_7537Bake for 15 minutes at 350, then reduce the temperature to 200 and bake a further 2 hours and 10 minutes. Turn off the oven, remove the cheesecake, and run a knife around the inside edge of the pan. Return the cheesecake to the oven with the door shut and let it sit in the still-warm oven for a further 2 hours. Remove from the oven, cover, and chill overnight.

img_7538My coworker Carol said this was the best thing I’ve made yet, which is a no small feat!

img_7539

Pear Crumble Cheesecake

From Bake or Break.

Crust:

  • 7 ounces Biscoff cookie crumbs, or cinnamon graham cracker crumb if you can’t find Biscoffs (1/2 a box of grahams)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted

Filling:

  • 24 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

Topping:

  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened and cut into small cubes
  • 2 medium pears, chopped into bite-size pieces

To prepare the crust, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Stir together the cookie crumbs and butter until well mixed, then press evenly into the bottom of a 9″ springform pan. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.

To make the filling, first combine the cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl and beat on medium speed until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each, then the vanilla and cinnamon. Finally, mix in the sour cream, then spread evenly in the prepared crust. Set aside to make the topping.

For the topping, combine the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl. Use a pastry blender, fork, or your hands to mix the butter into the dry goods until the the butter is well distributed and has just small clumps throughout.

Spread the chopped pears over the cheesecake, then sprinkle the prepared oat mixture on top of the pears. Bake for 15 minutes at 350, then reduce the temperature to 200 and bake a further 2 hours and 10 minutes. Turn off the oven, remove the cheesecake, and run a knife around the inside edge of the pan. Return the cheesecake to the oven with the door shut and let it sit in the still-warm oven for a further 2 hours. Remove from the oven, cover, and chill overnight.

Posted in Dessert | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Blueberry Lemon Sorbet

A few weeks ago I won a giveaway on a different food blog, Katie at the Kitchen Door. I won a variety of Stonewall Kitchen items, including their Wild Maine Blueberry Jam. I don’t do a lot of pb&j or other easy jam things lately, so I went to the Stonewall Kitchen website for ideas on how to use up the jam. I had never frozen something with so much water, so I was kind of worried that the sorbet recipe I chose was going to be a gross icy mess, but it’s actually a good texture, very tart from the lemons, and has nice little bursts of blueberry flavors from the whole berries in the jam.

img_7521First, though, a 2-picture tutorial on cutting lemons to juice them, which I learned from the side of a lime box:

First, cut off between 1/4 and 1/3 of two sides, leaving a flat center.

First, cut off between 1/4 and 1/3 of two sides, leaving a flat center.

Then, cut off the other two sides, leaving a square center ‘column’.

img_7517

Squeeze all the side bits how you’d expect, and crush the center column, top down to bottom. Ideally do all your squeezing over a strainer, so you don’t have to fish out seeds at the end!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Stonewall Kitchen Wild Maine Blueberry Jam
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 cups water

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together, breaking up all the clumps of jam.

Good color!

Good color!

Pour the mixture into the bowl of your ice cream maker and freeze according to the machine’s directions, probably 25-30 minutes.

img_7519Transfer to a dish with a lid and freeze several more hours until firm.

img_7520Super simple, super flavorful

It's the people who don't eat alone in front of their laptops every meal that are the real monsters!

It’s the people who don’t eat alone in front of their laptops every meal that are the real monsters!

Blueberry Lemon Sorbet

From Stonewall Kitchen.

  • 1 cup Stonewall Kitchen Wild Maine Blueberry Jam
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 cups water

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together, breaking up all the clumps of jam. Pour the mixture into the bowl of your ice cream maker and freeze according to the machine’s directions, probably 25-30 minutes. Transfer to a dish with a lid and freeze several more hours until firm.

Posted in Dessert | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Spaghetti Squash Cheesecake

This week’s second healthified dessert uses spaghetti squash, but you wouldn’t know it from the texture, or the taste. This winds up very sweet, thanks to a box of cheesecake pudding mix, and stays in good shape for many days of leftovers.

IMG_7501If you’re unsure how to get prepared spaghetti squash, cut a spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds and glop in the middle with a spoon. Either bake, face down, at 350 degrees for an hour, or microwave each half, again face down, for 10 minutes. Either way, once they are cooked you just scrape out the insides with a fork or two, and it’s all set! What you don’t use for the cheesecake, you can eat for dinner with some spaghetti sauce!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups prepared spaghetti squash
  • 1 8 ounce block cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 3.4 ounce package cheesecake pudding mix
  • 1 prepared graham cracker pie crust
  • 2 tablespoons jam

Combine the spaghetti squash and cream cheese in a food processor and process until smooth.

IMG_7493Add the pudding mix and process again until evenly combined.

Slightly yellower, perhaps?

Slightly yellower, perhaps?

Transfer the mixture into the prepared crust.

IMG_7496Dot the surface with the jam, in this case blueberry, and swirl it with a knife.

IMG_7499 IMG_7500Chill at least 1 hour before serving.

IMG_7515

Spaghetti Squash Cheesecake

Lightly adapted from Countryside Network.

  • 1 8 ounce block cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 3.4 ounce package cheesecake pudding mix
  • 1 prepared graham cracker pie crust
  • 2 tablespoons jam

Combine the spaghetti squash and cream cheese in a food processor and process until smooth. Add the pudding mix and process again until evenly combined. Transfer the mixture into the prepared crust. Dot the surface with the jam, and swirl it with a knife. Chill at least 1 hour before serving.

 

Posted in Dessert | Tagged , | Leave a comment

‘Healthy’ Cookie Dough Dip

This week I’ve got two lower calorie versions of regular desserts. While they’re not 100% as amazing as the original (seriously, what compares to cheesecake?), they’re both still totally tasty, and will get you through a craving without all the calories of the originals. Today’s recipe also has the bonus of not only being a cookie dough dip without eggs, but also not having flour, which is the latest thing you’re never supposed to eat raw again. It’s also just about as simple to make as it’s possible to be (hence underwhelmingly few photos)!

Ingredients:

  • 1 15 ounce can cups chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1/8 tsp plus 1/16 tsp salt
  • lightly heaping 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup nut butter of choice (peanut butter will give a peanut butter cookie taste, other nut butters may not be as strongly flavored)
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons oats
  • up to 1/4 cup milk of choice, if needed
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips

Combine the chickpeas, salt, baking soda, vanilla, nut butter, brown sugar, and oats in a food processor. Process until all the lumps are gone. If the mixture is thicker than desired, add the milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until thinned to your preference – I didn’t need any.

IMG_7474Stir in the chocolate chips.

IMG_7475Serve either with a spoon, sliced fruit, or cookies for dipping.

Straight from the bowl, thanks.

Straight from the bowl, thanks.

Store leftovers in the fridge. The mixture thickens very slightly when chilled, which I preferred.

 

Healthy Cookie Dough Dip

From Chocolate Covered Katie.

  • 1 15 ounce can cups chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1/8 tsp plus 1/16 tsp salt
  • lightly heaping 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup nut butter of choice
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons oats
  • up to 1/4 cup milk of choice, if needed
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips

Combine the chickpeas, salt, baking soda, vanilla, nut butter, brown sugar, and oats in a food processor. Process until all the lumps are gone. If the mixture is thicker than desired, add the milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until thinned to your preference. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Serve either with a spoon, sliced fruit, or cookies for dipping. Store leftovers in the fridge.

Posted in Dessert | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Spinach and White Bean Soup

A very green, healthy, filling soup in not too much time! If someone you’re dining with thinks that “it’s not dinner without meat” you could easily add some shredded or small-chopped chicken, but thanks to all the vegetables and beans this is plenty of filling without. On the other extreme, you could easily ditch the cheese and have a vegan soup!

IMG_7472This recipe calls for white wine. I don’t drink, and don’t need most of a bottle of wine sitting around, so I was going to go with one of the normal substitutions (grape juice or additional broth) but I decided to use this as an excuse to get a bottle of sparkling grape juice. The bubbles cooked out, but I thought it added a nice tangyness I enjoyed – maybe wine would do this as well, I don’t know – I really don’t ever drink!

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup dry white wine/grape juice/sparkling grape juice
  • 32 ounces low-sodium vegetable stock
  • 1 15 ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup sliced zucchini, cut into half moons
  • 2 cup peas
  • 3 cup baby spinach
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
I definitely rounded up on my vegetable amounts...

I definitely rounded up on my vegetable amounts…

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and cook for 2 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon.

IMG_7467Add the carrots, salt, and pepper, and cook an additional 2 minutes, continuing to stir occasionally.

IMG_7468Add the wine and stock, increase the heat to bring the mixture to a boil, then bring it back down to simmer for 5 minutes.

IMG_7469Add the beans and zucchini and simmer another 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.

IMG_7470Add the peas, spinach, and Parmesan, and cook until they are warmed through and the spinach is wilted.

IMG_7471Serve with additional black pepper on top. Actually, or extra Parmesan? Why not.

IMG_7473

Spinach and White Bean Soup

From Delish.com.

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup dry white wine/grape juice/sparkling grape juice
  • 32 ounces low-sodium vegetable stock
  • 1 15 ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup sliced zucchini, cut into half moons
  • 2 cup peas
  • 3 cup baby spinach
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and cook for 2 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon. Add the carrots, salt, and pepper, and cook an additional 2 minutes, continuing to stir occasionally. Add the wine and stock, increase the heat to bring the mixture to a boil, then bring it back down to simmer for 5 minutes. Add the beans and zucchini and simmer another 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Add the peas, spinach, and Parmesan, and cook until they are warmed through and the spinach is wilted. Serve with additional black pepper on top.

 

 

Posted in Dinner | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Strawberry Cream Cheese Pie

I admit this pie may look slightly underwhelming, how it doesn’t explode out of the crust or anything, but after I took my first bite this weekend I started messaging people “I AM GOOD AT PIE”, which should give you an idea of how I feel about it. This is a DELICIOUS pie!

IMG_7490Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 60 Nilla Wafers
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

Strawberry Filling:

  • 4 cups strawberries, divided
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup water

Cream Cheese Filling:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar

Plus:

  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips

To make the crust, first grease a 9″ pie pan and preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place all the cookies in a food processor and pulse until only crumbs remain – this happens very quickly. If you don’t have a food processor, you can put the cookies in a ziplock and crush them with a meat tenderizer or rolling pin.

IMG_7479 IMG_7480Add the butter and sugar and pulse until evenly combined. Pour the mixture into the prepared pie pan and press evenly into the sides and bottom of the pan.

IMG_7481Bake for 10 minutes, then cool on a wire rack.

While the crust bakes, chop 1 cup of the strawberries small. Using the back of a spoon, crush the berries as much as you can.

These berries had NO INTEREST in crushing!

These berries had NO INTEREST in crushing!

Combine the chopped berries with the sugar, corn starch, and water in a small pot and stir together. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly and continuing to crush the berries further. Let the mixture reach a boil, and continue cooking and stirring until the mixture has thickened. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.

IMG_7483Once the pie crust and strawberry mixture have been cooling for a while (10-15 minutes), cut the remaining strawberries into slices, then set aside. Beat together the cream cheese and powdered sugar. Transfer the cream cheese mixture into the crust. Although the crust is pretty sturdy once it has chilled, I found it better at this point to drop the cream cheese in small blobs to distribute it widely, rather than trying to smear the cream cheese evenly and messing up the crust in the process.

IMG_7485Scatter the sliced strawberries over the cream cheese mixture.

IMG_7486Spoon the cooked/cooled strawberry mixture on top.

IMG_7487Refrigerate for 1 hour. Melt the chocolate chips, drizzle the chocolate over the top of the pie, and refrigerate a further 15 minutes. Then slice, serve, and do your own shouting about your pie prowess!

IMG_7488

Strawberry Cream Cheese Pie

Crust:

  • 60 Nilla Wafers
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

Strawberry Filling:

  • 4 cups strawberries, divided
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup water

Cream Cheese Filling:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar

Plus:

  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips

To make the crust, first grease a 9″ pie pan and preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place all the cookies in a food processor and pulse until only crumbs remain. Add the butter and sugar and pulse until evenly combined. Pour the mixture into the prepared pie pan and press evenly into the sides and bottom of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes, then cool on a wire rack.

While the crust bakes, chop 1 cup of the strawberries into small pieces. Using the back of a spoon, crush the berries as much as you can. Combine the chopped berries with the sugar, corn starch, and water in a small pot and stir together. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly and continuing to crush the berries further. Let the mixture reach a boil, and continue cooking and stirring until the mixture has thickened. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.

Once the pie crust and strawberry mixture have been cooling for 10-15 minutes, cut the remaining strawberries into slices, then set aside. Beat together the cream cheese and powdered sugar. Transfer the cream cheese mixture into the crust by dropping small blobs all around the bottom. Scatter the sliced strawberries over the cream cheese mixture, then spoon the cooked strawberry mixture on top. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Melt the chocolate chips, drizzle the chocolate over the top of the pie, and refrigerate a further 15 minutes before serving.

 

Posted in Dessert | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment