Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Cheesecake Bar Cookies

I just love cheesecake.  Who doesn't, right?

It must be creamy and it must have a yummy crust.  Check.

AND - these bars don't crack on top like cheesecake usually does.  Bonus.

Crazy simple, and the ground pecans in the crust and the almond extract in the filling make these bars.

Thanks, Paula Deen, for the awesome idea.

Oh, and you'll want to try the raspberry sauce on top of these bars.  You'll just die.  Die.

And they're pretty outstanding just by themselves, too.

Cheesecake Bar Cookies
Adapted from Paula Deen

6 oz. pecans (about 1 1/2 cups roughly chopped)
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 stick butter, melted

Two 8 oz. packages cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 tsp almond extract
3 eggs

In the bowl of a food processor, finely grind the pecans.  Add the flour, brown sugar and butter and pulse until the ingredients stick together and are well combined.  Press lightly into the bottom of a lightly greased 9x13 baking dish.

Using a mixer, beat together the cream cheese, sugar and extract.  Add the eggs and beat until smooth, but do not overbeat or too much air will incorporate into the mixture.  Pour over crust and spread evenly.

Bake in 350 degree oven for 24-25 minutes until the filling is still slightly jiggly in the middle.  It will firm up as it cools.  Cool completely then chill before serving.  Delicious with raspberry sauce.

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