Sunday, December 07, 2008

Cheesecake Thumbprints

Since it's the holiday season, I feel like I want to bake a lot of cookies. Maybe it's just something about December but it's making me feel like I should be baking nonstop. So that's pretty much what I did today. We also started a Christmas gift fermenting in the closet. Last year it was Blackberry Brandy. What will it be this year? You will have to wait 2-3 weeks to find out.

Although these cookies are not healthy at all, I decided to make a batch for his coworkers. I've only sent in one treat to his work before, but I decided it was time for more. This is still going with the theme of holiday-baking-craziness. I picked these cookies from Joe's Blog, although they are originally from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook. They were easy to make, have only a few ingredients, and came together nicely. They do use two sticks of butter though since the cookie base is basically just a shortbread. Since we're used to cutting back on butter, we agreed that the cookies were a little buttery for us, but otherwise were very good. I hope his coworkers like them!

EDIT 12/8/08: His coworkers liked them a lot! Hooray!


Cheesecake Thumbprints
Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook via Joe's Blog

4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 teaspoons sour cream
1/4 teaspoon vanilla

For the cookie dough

16 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg yolk
2 cups all-purpose flour

To prepare cheesecake filling

In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until light and fluffy. Beat in sugar and salt until smooth. Mix in egg yolk, sour cream and vanilla - cover and place into the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

To prepare the cookie dough

In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter, sugar and salt until creamy and combined. Mix in egg yolk until incorporated. Gradually add flour and mix just until combined.

Scoop out level tablespoons worth of the dough and roll into balls. Place balls onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Using the handle end of a thick wooden spoon, lightly dipped in flour, make an indentation in the center of each ball.

Place into the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and carefully use your thumb (or the end of the same wooden spoon) to press the middle of the cookies back down, remaking the indentations. Place cookies back into the oven, rotating them from their original position, and continue to bake until slightly golden around the edges, about 7 minutes.

Remove cookies from the oven and fill the indentations with the cheesecake filling using a teaspoon. Place back into the oven and bake for 7 more minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer cookies to a wire rack to cook completely. When cool, place cookies into the refrigerator to chill before serving.

Yield: 30 cookies

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