Wednesday, November 20, 2013

How to Make Cheesecake Squares from The Prepared Pantry

By Dennis Weaver, The Prepared Pantry

Cheesecake squares have been our “go to” dessert when we need to feed people in a hurry. The beauty of cheesecakes squares is that you don’t have to stop and frost them. You load them with pastry filling before baking. And they’re very good.

The Raspberry Chocolate Cheesecake Squares were made with a Fudgy Baby Cakes Mix. Instead of making the cakes in a 9 x 13-inch pan, we made them in a 10 x 15-inch pan, so they were thinner. We squeezed diagonal lines of raspberry pastry filling in one direction and cream cheese pastry filling the other direction across the batter. The lines baked into the cake, giving it an attractive quilted appearance. We drizzled a white glaze over the cake. It’s quicker to make these cakes than it is to frost a sheet cake.

We’ve made these cakes before with our Vanilla Bean Baby Cakes mix also. You can vary the fillings. My favorite combination with the vanilla cake is cream cheese filling and pineapple filling. It’s scrumptious.

Cheesecake Squares Recipe

This is an easy way to make a fancy, formal dessert in a hurry. A cream cake is a denser cake, usually with pudding in the mix, not quite as dense as a pound cake.  The light, fluffy mixes found in stores don’t work too well; the filling drops right through the batter in the oven.

1 Fudgy Baby Cakes Cake Mix, Vanilla Bean Baby Cake Mix, or other cream cake mix
about one pound of prepared cream cheese filling
about one pound cherry or raspberry pastry filling or other filling
1/2 cup
prepared streusel
string icing or powdered sugar frosting

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
  1. Mix cake batter in a stand type mixer, per package instructions.  Scrape the batter into a well-greased or parchment lined 10×15-inch pan.  (a large baking pan, one size larger than a 9 x 13-inch pan or a medium baking sheet.  A 14-inch pizza pan has the same area if you would prefer to make your bars pie-shaped.)
  2. Cut a 1/4 to 3/8-inch corner off a pack of cream cheese filling.  Squeeze diagonal lines of filling across the cake batter about 3/4-inch apart.  Repeat going the other direction with either the raspberry or cherry filling.  You should use about 1/2 of both the cream cheese filling and the cherry or raspberry filling.  You will have a pretty crisscross pattern on the batter.
  3. Sprinkle the streusel across the cake in horizontal strips about an inch or so apart across the batter.  The streusel will be sparse but is an attractive touch.  If you do not have premade streusel, you can make your own from the recipe of your choice.  Most streusels are made with flour, sugar, and butter mixed together with a pastry knife or fork.
  4. Bake for about 27 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  5. Place the cake in the pan on a wire rack to cool.  If you are using parchment paper, grasp the edges of the paper and lift the cake to a wire rack to finish cooling.
  6. Drizzle icing across the cake.  You may make your own icing with powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla.  If you make your own frosting, scrape it into a small zipper-type bag or a small pastry bag, clip the corner or tip, and squeeze to drizzle the icing across the cake.


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