March 31, 2010

Dessert: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

The first thing to bake, on my lists of things to do in my free time, were theses Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars I saw, last week, on Bake at 350.
Hubs two favorite desserts are chocolate chip cookies and cheesecake, how could I not make these?

Anywhoodle, we were relaxing last night on the couch and I got antsy to do something with my free time, so I decided to just go ahead and make them. I had almost all the ingredients, so why not? And by almost, I mean I was 2oz shy on the cream cheese and about 1 Tbsp shy on the chocolate chips... Oh, and I don't have shortening.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars
slightly adapted from Bake at 350 (who adapted them from cookies and cups & The Essential Chocolate Chips Cookbook)

1 & 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
5 TBSP margarine, melted (remember Hubs is lactose intolerant, but yes he can have cheese... it's weird, it's with pills, moving on)
2/3 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Cookie Dough:
5 TBPS margarine (I like to use I Can't Believe It's Not Butter, baking sticks)
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
3 TBSP sugar
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup flour
1 cup chocolate chips

Cheesecake Filling:
10 oz. reduced fat cream cheese, room temp. [or 8oz if that's what you have ;-)]
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract

1/3 cups dark chocolate (or you can just use more chocolate chips, if that's what you've got)

Preheat oven to 325

1 - Grease a 8x8 pan with margarine, line pan with parchment paper and butter the paper, leaving enough to extend over the sides.
2 - Crush graham crackers into 1 & 1/2 cups of crumbs.
3 - Melt butter and add to crumbs are moistened.
4 - Stir in chocolate chips.
5 - Press crust mixture into bottom of pan.
6 - Bake for 6 minutes. Set pan on wire rack to cool.

Cookie Dough:
1- Mix butter(ish stuff), brown sugar, sugar, salt, and vanilla extract at medium speed until smooth.
2 - Adjust mixer speed to low and add flour. Mix just until incorporated.
3 - Stir in chocolate chips. Set aside.

1 - Beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
2 - Add egg and vanilla extract, beating just until blended.

1 - Microwave chocolate at 50% for intervals for a minute, stirring in between, until melted.

The whole she-bang:
1 - Pour cheesecake batter into cooled, baked crust.
2 - Drop cookie dough by teaspoonfuls over the top of the filling.
3 - Bake (at 325) for 30mins, or until set.
4 - Place back on wire rack.
5 - Drizzle melted chocolate over top.
6 - Place in fridge to chill.

I know I should wait for a better picture, when they're cooled and cut, and pretty, but I'm just so excited to be blogging again :) Perhaps tomorrow I will have a better picture.

March 30, 2010

I Want, I Need, I Have to Have: Squirrely Things

Two times today I've seen squirrely themed home decor and thought "I want, I need, I have to have". Truth be told, it's all because of the Hubs. For someone who isn't as hip when it comes to pop culture, the guy foretells the future on things that will become popular. He was into mid century modern design long before I started seeing it all over the place and squirrels, he likes squirrels.

Here are a few things I think we need:

1 - Nuts About Snacks Dish

2 - Modern Animal Clock Squirrel

3 - Jonathan Adler squirrel bottle stopper

Truth be told, we got one of there for my SIL law and her boyfriend for Christmas. Maybe we should get these squirrel candle holders instead.

Have you seen any cute squirrel themed goods around the internet?

Yes, Doug Can Read*

*1o points if you can tell me what movie that is from.

Guess what? I'm finished with class and now I have the whole month of April to do as I wish with my free time. Free time, how I've missed you so. I have a couple awesome things planned, such as cooking, baking and reading. I know I lead an exciting life people.

Here's where you come in, the reading part... I'm not quite sure what I want to read. I started Wuthering Heights a couple months ago when I was waiting for my class partner to show-up at the library, so that is on the list.

I've also been reading all Marian Keyes' books off and on starting two summers ago. I know I still have a few of her's left to read.

I just feel like there are probably some great books out there that I'm missing out on and I would appreciate some suggestions. A little book background on me... I didn't used to be what you would call "a reader", it took finding authors I really liked to get into reading. Now, when I find an author I enjoy, I read everything they've written. I haven't read the Twilight series, although I feel it's only a matter of time before I cave, since my sister owns the whole series and I feel a little left out not having chosen between Edward or Jacob. Oh, and I'm not huge into historical fiction.

So, please tell me, what books would you recommend?

March 26, 2010

Five for Friday

Previous Fridays

1 - You're excited for me to make you chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake bars
2 - You're funny
3 - You really like Tiki themed things
4 - You're a planner, like me
5 - You're just as excited as me that this semester is ending :)

March 25, 2010


It seems like forever ago (three month) that is started this semester. Eleven weeks have finally past by and I'm ONE GLORIOUS week away from a month long break from school.

Usually, I'm not this excited to get away from that place, but this semester has been more difficult than the past. I had to do a HUGE project with a partner... not of my choosing, nice girl, just a completely different life than mine.

I have a list of things I can wait to cook, blog about and cook & blog about... I guess this is just my silly way of saying I'm sorry I haven't been posting as much and prepare to read more because after Tuesday I'll be school project free for the month of April.


March 19, 2010

Five for Friday

Previous Fridays

1 - You got me Chloraseptic this morning when I told you my throat felt like it was on fire
2 - You give me shoulder squeezes
3 - You give the best hugs
4 - You make dinner when I don't feel well
5 - You're my pillow

March 17, 2010

Happy St Patrick's Day!

Last summer I married this green eyed, half(ish) Irish, boy...

Duh, Allison, we know you got married! Thanks :) Anywhoodle, that means that this St Patrick's Day is my first St Patrick's Day as an Irish person (by marriage)!

Pretty sure I'm wearing more green than he is today...

Did you marry into any fun holidays?

March 12, 2010

I Have an Interwebs Shopping Problem

Thanks to One Kings Lane, Rue La La, and Gilt Group I have an interwebs shopping addiction. Most the time I just skim the email and see if there is a designer I recognize, but I always check One Kings Lane.

Here's a sampling of some things I've purchased from One Kings Lane in the past year...

R Nichols Notecards, Salt & Pepper Shakers, Nesting bowls, Danica Studio's Tea Towels

From Rue La La, I've purchased a pair of pink Puma running shoes for my honeymoon and sexy bra and matching panties... but can't find those pictures. Today, I bought these Charles David "Souffle" Berry Patent Flats.

From Gilt, my site I've been a member of the longest, I've only recently started making purchases. In the past 5 months I've bought...

Wish I was at home so I could tell you who makes the bowl and toaster, sorry. The cookbooks are A Return to Cooking by Eric Ripert & Michael Ruhlman and Frank Stitt's Southern Table. I can't wait for April, when I have the whole month off from school and I can actually read them and perhaps even cook something! P.S. I also purchased a kitchen scale from Gilt too!

Today, from Gilt, I bought this Vera Wang Bridesmaid dress to wear to the (at least) 4 weddings I have coming up this summer.

See I have a problem! Today I purchased two things in a matter of 30 minutes. Perhaps for Lent I should have given up interwebs shopping?

Do you purchase a lot of things from the interwebs?

Do you need help with your addiction?
Invite to One Kings Lane HERE
Invite to Rue La La
Invite to Gilt Group

Happy Shopping!

Five for Friday

Previous Fridays

1 - Your going to the car dealership I don't like to get me a new gas cap because they're the only one in town with one in stock and I refuse to go there.
2 - You took me to Battista's Hole in the Wall
3 - You like my cooking
4 - You clean out your dishes now because you know it makes me happy
5 - You like cheeese

March 9, 2010

Adventures in Dining Out: Battista's Hole in the Wall

If you follow me on Twitter, you probably know I went to Las Vegas this past weekend. If you don't follow me on Twitter... are you on Twitter? Yes. What the eff man? Anywhoodle, one of my favorite places to go in Vegas is Battista's Hole in the Wall. Haven't heard of it? Don't worry, most people I talk to haven't because isn't exactly "on the strip", it's behind it. More specifically, it's behind the Flamingo, all shady like, next to a liquor store.

In this picture I am the only one under 6 foot and doesn't have a name that starts with "J"

Battista's is tasty and probably one of the best deals you will get in Vegas. I don't know if you know this, but eating in Vegas is Price-eeee! At Battista's ALL dinners include Minestrone Soup or Italian Salad, Garlic Bread, Pasta Side, Homemade Cappuccino and FREE TABLE WINE!

We got both white and red table wine because we had four people.

Jane is the only one who didn't say, "Mozzarella!" when the waiter taking our picture told us to... smart woman.

This is not my picture because I failed at being a blogger this weekend and took a total of about 5 pictures, but this is what the menus look like posted around the restaurant. The couple times I've been I try to stay in the $22.95 section and get the eggplant or lasagna... both are very good. This time was no exception, our table ordered...

One of these...
Canelloni (Meat)

and one of these...
Eggplant Parmegiana

and two of these...

We also got a side order of meatballs, but got Italian Sausage instead...
They did bring us our meatballs, but I thought the Italian Sausage was tastier.

After the meal we were beyond stuffed.
But our wallets were happy :) and Clint still thought I was sexy ;-)

Actually, he looks rather disinterested doesn't he? Well at least the Hubs still loves me!

What is your favorite "Hole in the Wall"?

March 5, 2010

Five for Friday

Previous Fridays

1 - You like wine as much as I do
2 - You like food even more than I do
3 - Chirpie Bird
4 - Our Happy Dance
5 - You love ice cream cones


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