dessert

Festive Chocolate Cheesecake Tart with Gingersnap Crust and Cran-raspberry Coulee by Rosie Berger

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Layers of chocolatey-ganachy-cheesecakey-fruity goodness in this tart. These fillings make enough to fill a 12” tart dish (like the one pictured) PLUS another 7x11 dish (it’s a fairly shallow tart, which is ok since the flavours are pretty rich)!

INGREDIENTS

Crust

2.5 cups gingersnap crumbs

1/2 cup butter, melted

Cheesecake layer

2 bricks cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup whipping cream

2 tsp cornstarch

1 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

Ganache layer

1/2 cup butter

12 oz of Unsweetened baking chocolate

1/3 cup whipping cream

1/2 granulated sugar (feel free to add a bit more if you like things a bit sweeter)

Coulis

1 pint raspberries

1.5 cup of cranberries (fresh or frozen)

1/3 cup water

1.5 tsp grapefruit zest

2 tsp ground cloves

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 350

  2. Mix crumbs and butter in a bowl until crumbs stick together

  3. Spread evenly in dishes, including up the sides press down with hands

  4. Blind bake for 15 minutes, until crust turns dark gold and begins to bubble. Remove and let cool until your cheesecake filling is ready (about 20 mins)

  5. While baking your crust, add cream cheese to bowl and use electric mixer to whip and soften

  6. Add whipping cream, mix until fluffy

  7. Mix in sugar and cornstarch

  8. Mix in eggs (one at a time) and vanilla until smooth

  9. Pour & spread cheesecake mixture over crusts, 1-2 cm deep

  10. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until firm. Remove and set aside

  11. In a double boiler, melt butter (instead of a double boiler, use a larger pot of simmering water about 1/3 full with a smaller pot resting on top (be careful it doesn’t let any water in)

  12. Once butter is melted, add chocolate and stir until combined. Careful not to let the chocolate burn

  13. Stir in whipping cream

  14. Pour & spread over cheesecake layer

  15. Add coulis ingredients to a medium pot, stir together and turn heat to medium, until water begins to boil

  16. Turn heat down to medium low, let simmer and stir occasionally until berries are very soft and liquidy.

  17. Strain over a heatproof bowl, pressing all the berry goodness through until only seeds and peels remain (they can be thrown out)

  18. Use a spoon (or a squeeze bottle, if you’re feeling fancy) to distribute the coulis across the tarts.

  19. Refrigerate tarts until right before serving, garnish with fresh sugared cranberries.

Pumpkin Spice Cookies by Rosie Berger

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So the way these turned out they’re basically a copycat of Starbucks pumpkin scones. And I’m not mad about it. Not overly sweet, cakey and addicting.

INGREDIENTS

Cookies

1 cup butter, cubed and softened

1 cup white sugar

1 egg

1 cup pureed pumpkin (roast and puree your own, or use canned)

1.5 tbsp cinnamon

2 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp ground cloves

1 tsp ground ginger

3 cups all purpose flour

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

Icing

1 250g container cream cheese

1/2 cup icing sugar

1 tbsp cinnamon

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 350

  2. Cream butter and sugar with electric or stand mixer .

  3. Add egg and pumpkin, mix until combined.

  4. Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl.

  5. Gradually add dry ingredients to wet while mixing

  6. Roll dough into 1 inch balls, place 1.5 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets (12 per sheet).

  7. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until outside is no longer shiny and bottom is golden brown.

  8. While cookies bake, mix icing ingredients until smooth

  9. Spread (or pipe, if you’re feeling fancy) frosting on cookies. You will have leftovers (you can either half the recipe, or find some other use for it… like eating it with a spoon…)

    Makes approx, 40 cookies.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Blondies by Rosie Berger

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Peanut butter and chocolate is always, and forever, one of the best flavour combos. Don't deny it. These are halfway between a brownie and a peanut butter cookie, so you're welcome.

1 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar

1 tbsp pure maple syrup

3/4 cup smooth peanut butter

2 eggs

2 1/2 cups flour

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking powder

Chocolate topping

1 cup semisweet chocolate

3 tbsp butter

2 tbsp milk

Method:

Preheat oven to 350, line a 8x12 baking dish with parchment paper (butter any exposed area)

1. Cream sugars and butter with electric or stand mixer.

2. Add eggs and peanut butter, mix until smooth (a few lumps are fine)!

3. Combine dry ingredients separately, add to main bowl gradually while mixing.

4.  Spread mixture in baking dish, flatten with fingers if necessary.

For chocolate topping

5. In a double boiler, melt butter.

6. Add milk and chocolate chips

7. Stir until melted.

8. Pour over blondie batter, spread as far to edges as you'd like (I like to leave a little room on the edges so you get those perfect crispy edge pieces, and to test baking time)

9. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until edges are light golden brown.

10. Cool, slice and serve.