It’s Secret Recipe Club time again! Swiftly fly the weeks…….! It’s a fun group and really does make you branch out and 1—”meet” new people and find new blogs and 2—find great new recipes and try new things! I say that and this month I went with kind of “good old” recipes. That’s not entirely true, my secret blogger was Lesa from Edesia's Notebook made her own version of these two faves and I was drawn in by the photos as well as needed to use up some things I had and these two recipes were perfect for that.
Lesa is a stay-at-home-mom with two girls (girls, what is that?) ;) She loves to cook and bake and find new recipes to try out on her family. Sounds familiar! I liked the simplicity of her blog and recipes and actually had a hard time deciding what to make until the boys were begging for chocolate chip cookies one day. (I have a little secret confession, with every new blog I find or am assigned for SRC, the first thing I do is search for cookies.)
I found some Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies that are Lesa’s spin on the famous Neiman Marcus cookies and decided they must be made to make for some happy campers ‘round here.
I added chocolate chips to half the dough and baked a couple dozen. Then I added just raisins to the other half of the dough for Oatmeal Raisin Cookies.
The recipe made a lot of cookies! And was perfect for after school snacks for the boys.
That seemed a little like a cop out for the SRC though and I fully intended to fix that by making something else from Lesa’s blog. After a little more searching and realizing I had some of Nellie & Joe’s Key West Lime Juice that only has a couple more months fridge life, I stumbled upon some Key Lime Cheesecake Bars that Lesa made back in August of this year. Oh, I also had about 4-5 packages of cream cheese in my fridge—so these became the perfect thing to make. I included these on a tray of goodies I took to our Thanksgiving dinner (as well as a couple pies, like this Nutella Pie, and a pumpkin cheesecake swirled pie and my favorite sweet potato casserole).
I would have to say pie is definitely a Thanksgiving favorite of most people and since that is what most people had, I ended up taking home quite a few of the key lime cheesecake bars. And actually, that was okay with us, especially Scottie, who I believe ate almost all the bars over the next couple days after Thanksgiving! He really liked them! I did, too! I thought they really were perfectly limey and creamy. I also loved the crust Lesa made with ground up graham crackers and almonds!
I only ever so slightly adapted the cheesecake bars recipe. The cookies, too, I lowered the amount of sugars and baking soda. I’m finding that helps a bit with the higher altitude here.
Key Lime Cheesecake Bars, adapted from Katrina, Baking and Boys! from Edesia’s Notebook
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs (about 6 rectangle crackers)
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 can (14 ounces) fat free sweetened condensed milk
8 ounces 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
2 large egg yolks
zest of one lime
1/2 cup key lime juice (fresh or as I used as a great alternative-Nellie & Joe’s Key West Lime Juice)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Have an 8x8 inch baking pan ready.
Grind the graham crackers in a food processor until almost crumbs. Add the sliced almonds and sugar and pulse until finely ground. Pulse in the melted butter until all combined. Spread the mixture evenly into the baking pan. Set aside.
Wipe out the bowl to the food processor. Add the cream cheese and pulse until smooth. Add the condensed milk and pulse to combine. Scrape the sides of the bowl. Add the egg yolks, lime zest and key lime juice and blend together. (This can also be done in a mixing bowl.) Pour the mixture into the baking pan over the crumb crust.
Bake for 25 minutes until the filling is just set. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack. Chill for at least 3 hours.
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies and/or Oatmeal Raisin Cookies, by Katrina, Baking and Boys! adapted from Edesia’s Notebook
1 1/4 cups (100 grams) ground oats (grind in a food processor or blender)
1 1/4 cups (100 grams) old fashioned oats
2 cups all purpose flour (240 grams)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar (150 grams)
3/4 cup brown sugar (165 grams)
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup raisins
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Combine the ground oats, oats, flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a medium sized bowl. Whisk to sift and combine. Set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Scrape sides of bowl. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until well combined. Scrape sides of bowl again. Add the dry ingredients and beat just until combined. Remove half the dough to a medium sized bowl and add the chocolate chips. Add the raisins to the other half of the dough. (Or just double the chocolate or raisins if you only want one kind of cookie.)
Scoop the dough onto baking sheets two inches apart and bake for 10-12 minutes. Let cookies sit on baking sheets for a couple minutes, then remove them to cool completely on wire racks. Makes about 4 dozen.