Cream cheese is a versatile addition for desserts and for main course dishes.
This week’s recipes offer three suggestions for using cream cheese.
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Cranberry Coffee Cake
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsps. baking powder
1/2 tsp. soda
3/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup butter, melted
2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, chopped
1 tsp. vanilla
Cream Cheese layer:
1-8 oz. pkg. cream cheese
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup cold butter
For the base batter, combine dry ingredients. Combine egg, juice, butter and vanilla and stir into dry ingredients until mixed. Pour into a prepared spring form pan.
Beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth and blended. Add egg and vanilla and mix well before spreading over batter.
For the top, combine sugar and flour and cut in butter until crumbly. Spoon over cream cheese.
Bake for 75-90 minutes in a 350 degrees F oven. Cool on rack then remove from pan onto a serving plate. Chill before slicing.
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Cream Cheese Cookies
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
2 tsps. vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsps. cornstarch
1 tsp. baking soda
2 1/4 cups mint-flavoured chocolate chips
Combine butter, cream cheese, sugars, egg and vanilla and beat on medium-high speed for at least 10 minutes, frequently scraping sides of bowl.
Add dry ingredients and mix until combined, about 2 minutes. Add chocolate chips and mix just to incorporate.
Place heaping mounds (about 1 tbsp.) of the dough on a large platter. Flatten slightly with palm of hand. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2-3 hours before baking.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray cookie sheets with Pam and then place cookies on sheets, 2 inches apart. Bake 8-10 minutes or until edges have set and tops are just beginning to set. Cookies will firm up as they cool.
Cool on sheets for 5 minutes then transfer to racks. Store in airtight container in fridge. Cookies may be frozen. Makes about 28 cookies.
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Cream Cheese Chicken
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 oz. spreadable cream cheese, softened
1 tbsp. onion flakes
2 slices of bacon
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Mix cream cheese and onion flakes. Butterfly each chicken breast nearly in half and spread out on a sprayed baking dish. Spread cream cheese over chicken breasts.
Cut bacon slices in half and pre-cook for 2-3 minutes in microwave. Place bacon strips on top of cream cheese.
Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until juices run clear.
Joyce Walter can be reached at email@example.com