Sweet & Spicy Salsa Duo + Homemade Tortilla Chips

Happy Monday!  Today marks the 2nd month of my recipe contribution to A Dose of Paige.

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On her blog, I share a delicious, unique twist on homemade salsa.  I created a duo that complements each other perfectly.  Sweet & Spicy – A Chipotle Black Bean & Sweet Watermelon Cucumber.  I also made my own homemade corn tortilla chips.  You’ll have to visit her site to see more pictures and get the recipe!  Click on the link below.

A Dose of Paige – Sweet & Spicy Salsa Duo

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Strawberry Vanilla Cheesecake Bars

{fruit, cheese, cake, doughiness}

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My coworker was celebrating her 21st birthday so we decided to throw a little party, potluck style.  If you have followed along with my blog for quite some time you are aware that we have these often.  A couple of things I have brought:  Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps & Mini Chicken & Waffle Bites.  I typically opt for the savory dishes as I am not a baker.

However, this time around I wanted to take a stroll down the sweet road and add a twist to my go-to dessert.  If you have ever had a pot luck style meal with me and I was bringing the dessert, you had my Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Bars.  I also brought this dessert to my very first pot luck at work.

I am a bit burned out on this recipe, but I love it so much I couldn’t part completely with it.  I decided to give it a twist and switch around some ingredients & try out a new crust.  The “meat” of the recipe remains the same.  The cheesecake bars make a refreshing, summertime dessert.  It is very easy to make and needs to be made the night before so the cheesecake can set.  With Memorial Weekend next weekend, I wanted to share this recipe because it would be a great item to bring to your BBQ.

I didn’t have the time to take good pictures of these so please excuse my poor quality snapshots.  I really liked these and plan to make them again so I will be updating the pictures sometime soon.

strawberry vanilla cheesecake bars

Recipe By:  Sara
Prep Time:  15 minutes   |||   Cook TIme:  35 minutes   |||   Servings: 8-12   |||   Difficult Level:  Low-Medium

Ingredients:

Crust:
40 vanilla wafers
4 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Filling:
2 – 8oz packages reduced fat cream cheese
2/3 cup reduced fat sour cream
1/2 cup sugar + 1 Tbsp
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup strawberries, chopped
2 eggs

Topping:
5-6 vanilla wafers
1 Tbsp chocolate sauce (optional)

Directions:
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.  In a food processor, pulse the 40 vanilla wafers until finely ground.
3.  Add melted butter and pulse until combined.
4.  Line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
5.  Pour in butter/cookie mixture and evenly spread over the bottom, pressing firmly down all over and into the corners.
6.  Bake for 10 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool.
7.  In a food processor, combine the cream cheese, sour cream, lemon juice, salt, vanilla, eggs, and 1/2 cup of sugar.  Pulse until combined.
8.  Pour over cooled cookie crust.
9.  In a small sauce pan, add the strawberries and 1 Tbsp of sugar.  Heat over medium temperature.
10.  Cook, stirring often, until the strawberries have “melted” and the mixture look like jam, about 10 minutes.
11.  Stir cooled strawberry mixture into the cream cheese.
12.  Bake for 25 minutes.
13.  Place in fridge for a minimum of 3 hours.
14.  Before serving, sprinkle a few crushed vanilla wafers over the top and drizzle with chocolate sauce (optional).

enjoy.

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