Over the weekend we visited our cousins for a casual housewarming cookout. I’ve had my eye on a couple Pinterest recipes for a while and decided to give them a shot this weekend. I whipped up these two treats and they were home runs!
Warning – these are FAR from healthy recipes! Not good for the dieting population who may be reading my blog. Consider this your disclaimer!
Charleston Cheese Dip
Photo courtesy of FoodNetwork.com (I failed to photograph this weekend)
This recipe is a Trisha Yearwood original, featured on her Football, Friends, and Comfort Food episode.
As usual, I made a couple changes. Here’s my version of the Charleston Cheese Dip. I can’t put its yumminess in words! This was a perfect appetizer to munch on while we prepared the burgers, brats and beans.
- 1 8 oz. block of Cabot Extra Sharp White Cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 8 oz. package of cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup Miracle Whip
- 1 handful of regular shredded cheddar cheese (nice unit of measurement, huh?)
- 6 slices of cooked bacon
- 4 green onions, chopped
- a dash of black pepper
- a dash of paprika
- Club crackers
- Begin by stirring together the cheeses, onions, Miracle Whip, black pepper, and paprika. This will be much easier if your cream cheese is truly at room temperature. Make sure it is blended well.
- Crumble 4 slices of bacon into the mixture. I used kitchen scissors to get smaller, uniform pieces.
- Spread the cheesy mixture into a small baking dish, like the one pictured.
- Crumble the remaining bacon on top along with 10-12 Club crackers.
- Bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees.
- Serve warm with Club crackers, fresh veggies, or whatever floats your boat. So creamy and delicious!
Cake Batter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Photo courtesy of Sally’s Baking Addiction
Yeah, you read that right. Cake batter and chocolate chips all wrapped up in one cookie! Our friends that would be at the get-together are cookie lovers so I knew it was the perfect opportunity to try out this recipe.
The cookies are perfect! It’s the ideal marriage of cake batter flavor and classic chocolate chip cookie flavor. The cookies are moist, super sweet, and chewy.
I followed the recipe to a T, except for the part where the dough is supposed to be chilled prior to baking. I simply did not have time for that! I stuck my mixing bowl in the freezer between batches to try to help chill the dough. One thing I love about this recipe blog post is the science behind creating the perfect cookie and the explanation about why it’s important to work with chilled dough here.
My cookies came out great, but they did break a little at the top, unlike the ones pictured above. Next time I will plan ahead and give the dough plenty of time to chill. I’ll copy and insert the recipe below…
- 1 and 1/4 cup (160g)all-purpose flour
- 1 and 1/4 cup (190g) yellow or vanilla boxed cake mix (I typically use vanilla cake mix)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cup (1.5 sticks or 170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (100g) light brown sugar
- 1 egg, at room temperature
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup (180g) chocolate chips (I used a blend of white and semi-sweet chocolate chips)
- 1/2 cup (80g) sprinkles
In a large bowl, sift together flour, cake mix, and baking soda. Set aside.
Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream the softened butter and both sugars together on medium speed until smooth. Add the egg and mix on high until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the vanilla and beat on high until combined. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix on low-medium speed until just combined. Add the chocolate chips and sprinkles. Mix on low until the add-ins are evenly disbursed.
Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate dough for at least 2 hours, or up to 3 days. This step is mandatory. The dough is fairly sticky, so chilling the dough is required in order to avoid the cookies from spreading too much. If you chill longer than 2 hours, make sure you roll the cookie dough into balls after the 2 hour mark. Place dough balls on a plate, cover tightly, and store in the refrigerator until ready to bake.
Once dough has been chilled, preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
Scoop rounded balls of the cold dough onto an ungreased baking sheet, use about 1.5 Tablespoons of cookie dough per cookie. Shape your cookie dough balls to be “taller” than they are wide, as pictured above. Press a few chocolate chips into the tops of the cookie dough balls, if desired. That makes a pretty cookie. Make sure to keep dough chilled when working in batches.
Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes until edges are slightly browned. Mine took 10 minutes exactly. The centers will still appear very soft, but the cookies will set as they cool. You may also press a few more chips into the tops of the cookies at this point (the chips will melt down and stick from the warm cookies).
Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 4 minutes and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies stay fresh in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 7 days. They won’t last that long!