Sunday, May 11, 2008

Grandma's Cheesecake Tartlets

Today is Mother's Day. Happy Mother's Day, MOM! And to all of the other mothers out there who maybe happen to read my piddly blog.

Yesterday my mom decided to have all of her girls over for dinner at her house. Better her than me, because having people over generally causes me anxiety! So I had to offer to bring dessert. Mom wanted crock pot cake, and my younger sister wanted cheesecake. Yes, both of my sisters are also moms so I wanted to oblige my sister's request also.

I didn't feel like cooking a whole cheesecake (umm, I never have, yet, and didn't want to buy 5 packages of cream cheese!). So I called up grandmom who I knew had a recipe for cheesecake tartlets which she used to make at family functions all the time.

So if you're ever looking for something really really simple to please the cheesecake lovers out there, definitely give this a shot!

my grandmom, Joan (where she got it from, I have no idea)

2 packages cream cheese (I used one regular, and one 1/3 less fat)
3/4 cup sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla (which I just realized while typing this that I totally forgot!)
Nilla wafer cookies
foil cupcake wrappers
cheesecake topping of your choice (the drug of choice in my family is canned cherry pie filling)


1. Combine first 4 ingredients and beat well.
2. Line a cupcake tin with 12 cupcake wrappers (keep the white wrapper inside each foil wrapper).
3. Place 1 Nilla wafer in the center of each cupcake wrapper.
4. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, pour about 1/4 cup of the cheesecake batter into each cupcake wrapper, covering the Nilla wafer.
5. Bake in pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until set. (mine took exactly 18 minutes).
6. Let cool, then store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
7. Before serving, top with your choice of topping.

Yield: I got 22 tartlets by measuring about 1/4 cup into each cupcake wrapper

What's that you say? You don't like toppings on your cheesecake? Well, neither do I. I much prefer my cheesecake unalduterated. The good news is they're just as good with no topping! It's the only way I eat them :)

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Tex-Mex Turkey Burgers

My WC sis, Lindsey, never ceases to give me reasons to love her. When I saw this dinner on her blog today, I began drooling all over my desk and had to pull out the disinfecting wipes. It was perfect because I had no dinner plans and was going to be home alone for dinner. I printed out the recipe and went straight to the grocery store after work to get some ground turkey. I couldn't wait to mush up these burgers.

I pulled out my digital scale and measured out 4 (5 oz.) servings from my package of ground turkey and froze 2 servings for future use. I decided to cook up 2 of these flavorful burgers so I would have something to take to work for lunch tomorrow (by the way, I so thought today was Friday, phhffft).

Here's the recipe scaled down for 2 burgers/servings:


10 oz. 99% fat free ground turkey
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp black pepper
dash of hot sauce (I excluded because I was too lazy to grab it out of the fridge)
1 Tbsp diced jalepeno peppers
1/2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro (I omitted)
1/2 small yellow onion, thinly sliced (I generally only keep sweet onions on hand because I prefer the taste)
1 sliced bell pepper, any color (I used 1 cup frozen tri-color pepper strips)
1 tsp olive oil


1. In pan over low heat, saute 3/4 of onion and bell peppers in olive oil; stir occasionally to avoid burning.
2. In mixing bowl, combine turkey, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, cumin, cayenne black pepper, hot sauce, jalapeƱos, cilantro and the remaining 1/4 of the onion(finely chopped).
3. Using hands, mix until ingredients are combined. Divide mixture into two equal parts and form into patties.
4. Place patties on prepared grill or grill pan. Cook for five minutes per side or until no longer pink in center.
5. Remove from heat and top with onions, peppers and your favorite salsa.

To follow with Lindsey's suggestion, I served with 1/2 cup black beans

So, if you're looking for a very flavorful and quite healthy mexican dinner, you should definitely, hands down, give this one a try! Thanks, Lindsey!!

Weight Watchers points values per my calculations:
5 oz. 99% fat free ground turkey breast: 3 points
1/2 cup black beans: 2 points
1/2 tsp EVOO: 1 point
onions/peppers: 0 points
TOTAL: 6 points

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Dinner and Dessert with Dana

My friend, Dana, and I try to get together about once a month to cook each other dinner then try baking a new recipe. It was my turn to host so I decided to make some chicken parmesan because I finally found some panko bread crumbs in my grocery store. For dessert we decided to make these chocolate chip cookies. After I saw these in bakingblonde's blog, I knew immediately I had to try them and I wasted no time forwarding the recipe and pictures to Dana. It was then agreed that this would in fact be our next new recipe we would try. I think it was especially fun for Dana because she regularly bakes chocolate chip cookies for her husband and is always testing out new recipes.


Source: Me

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts marinated in italian dressing (4 oz. each)

panko breadcrumbs

jarred marinara sauce

fat free and part skim mozzarella (I like to mix both because the fat free cheese doesn't melt well)

1. Bread italian marinated chicken breasts in panko breading.

2. Lightly spray pan with EVOO. Cook chicken on both sides to lightly brown.

3. Add marinara to bottom of 8x8 inch baking dish. Lay chicken breasts in baking dish. Spoon marinara over chicken. Sprinkle cheese on chicken. Bake at 350 for about a half hour or until chicken is done.

Serve with whole wheat pasta and a nice healthy salad.

For my salad, I just mixed romaine and spinach, lightly sprayed with EVOO and a few splashes of red wine vinegar, season with italian seasoning, salt and fresh cracked pepper. So yummy and much healthier than dousing with dressings.

Source: bakingblonde

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla (I used 2 tsp)
3 1/4 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt (I used regular table salt)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 cups good quality semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup walnuts (I omitted)
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Mix flour, salt, and baking powder and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.

3. Beat the butter and sugars until thoroughly blended. Mix in eggs, and vanilla. Add dry ingredients. The dough will be stiff and thick. Finish mixing by hand if needed until just combined. Gently fold in chips and nuts if using.

4. Use a 1/4 measuring cup to scoop out dough balls. Place dough onto one of two parchment paper-lined cookie sheets. You can make smaller dough balls but be sure to adjust baking times as needed to prevent browning.

5. Bake 15-25 minutes (depending on the size of your cookies and your oven) or until cookies are pale brown and outer edges start to harden yet centers are still soft and puffy. I baked my cookies for 22 minutes exactly.

6. Cool cookies on cookie sheets for 10 minutes. Transfer to cooling rack until cooled completly. Serve or store in airtight container.

These cookies were amazingly soft, fluffy and puffy. Of course, that's the type of cookie I like. Dana said she felt it had too much flour in this recipe and would reduce the amount of flour next time she tried this recipe. The only downfall to these cookies is that you really can only eat one at a time! Well, I guess that would be a downfall for some, and an upside for others!


Monday, May 5, 2008

Thanks Katie!!!

You rock! Thank you so much for my new blog header!

For Ashlee

I'm so sorry that there still are no updates :*(
But I wanted to give you a shout out in hopes that you might forgive me.
Hopefully I can make it up to you something serious this week!