So, without further adieu, I present to you… Strawberry Cheesecake Squares!
Strawberry Cheesecake Squares
1 package Pecan Sandies Cookies, divided
1 1/2 Tbsp. butter, melted
11 oz. cream cheese (1 8-oz. package + 3 oz. of another package, not low-fat), softened
2/3 c. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. almond extract
2 c. Breakstone’s Sour Cream
1 1/4 c. strawberry sauce* or strawberry jam, divided (recipe below; you can also use jarred strawberry topping or canned strawberry pie filling)
1 pint fresh strawberries – washed, hulled and roughly chopped
1/3 c. white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Combine ingredients in a medium sauce pain and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring and breaking up strawberries constantly with a wooden spoon. After 5 minutes, remove from heat and allow to cool. Once cool enough, transfer to a blender and pulse until smooth (or your desired texture).
Preheat oven to 375.
Spray a 9×13 pan with non-stick cooking spray. In a food processor, process 3/4 of the Pecan Sandies (reserve 6). Mix with melted butter and lightly press onto the bottom of the pan. Set aside.
In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine cream cheese eggs, sugar, salt, vanilla, almond extract, and sour cream. Beat on high for 4-5 minutes. Spread half of the cheesecake batter onto the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Pour 3/4 c. of the strawberry sauce over the batter, spreading gently to cover the surface (it doesn’t have to be perfect). Spread remaining cheesecake batter over the strawberry layer and then spoon remaining 1/2 c. of strawberry sauce over the batter. Being careful not to cut into the surface of the cookie crust, swirl the strawberry mixture with a butter knife.
Bake at 375 for 25-35 minutes or until center is jiggly but not liquid. While baking, process remaining 6 cookies. During the last 10 minutes of baking, sprinkle the cookies on top of the cheesecake. Chill for at least 8 hours and cut into squares. If desired, drizzle remaining strawberry sauce over the individual squares.
Source & Recipes: Our Best Bites Cookbook
Stay tuned for my next post! Until then…