bars · Desserts

Raspberry Cheesecake Bars

Raspberry Cheesecake Bars

Wow, wow, wow.  When I saw this recipe on FoodBabbles, I knew I would be trying it out.  Fresh raspberries are baked on a delicious shortbread crust smothered in raspberry jam and topped with cheesecake filling.  What’s not to like?  I took these to a BBQ and they were very well received.  I was impressed that something with so little prep time was so pretty and so delicious.

Ingredients:
1 c. unsalted butter cut into 1″ chunks
1/4 c. packed light brown sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 c. all-purpose flour
softened butter, for greasing pan
3/4 c. seedless raspberry jam or preserves
1 pint (2 cups) of fresh raspberries
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
2 Tbsp lemon zest
2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp vanilla
powdered sugar for dusting

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13x9x2-inch baking pan and then line it with a sheet of parchment paper, leaving extra paper extending over the ends which will later be used to lift the bars from the pan.

In a large bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer on medium speed until it just begins to blend and soften, about 30 seconds.  Add brown sugar and salt, beat on low speed until just incorporated, 30 seconds to 1 minute.  Add 2 cups of flour. Beat on low until the flour is incorporated then increase the speed to medium and mix until the ingredients form an even, cohesive dough.

Break the dough into small chunks and press into the bottom of the prepared pan in an even layer. Bake for 20 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.

Lightly brush the exposed parchment paper with softened butter. Spread the jam evenly over the crust. Sprinkle evenly with the fresh raspberries.

In a large bowl beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer on medium speed for about 30 seconds. Mix in the granulated sugar and 1 tablespoon of flour until blended. With the mixer running, add the egg, egg yolk, lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla. Beat until smooth.  Pour the custard batter evenly over the berries. Tilt the pan back and forth to evenly distribute.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until the custard is barely set.

Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour and then transfer to the refrigerator. Chill for 2 hours.

Use the parchment to lift the bars from the pan. Gently peel the parchment down and away from the bars. Cut into long bars, peel the parchment from the bottom and transfer to a cutting board. Next, cut the bars into smaller squares.

Sprinkle lightly with powdered sugar and enjoy!

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