Raspberry and cheesecake are one of my favorite combinations. I use it quite often as a filling for yeast breads, pastries, cookies, etc. This time I decided to make them in the form of bars with a shortbread base. The refreshing berries meld with the creaminess of the cheesecake filling as the center of the soft and crumbly cookie bars. This recipe is so simple, quick and elegantly beautiful.
Yields: about 36 bars
3 sticks of butter, (each stick = 4 oz or 100 grams or 1/2 cup) softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 packages (8 oz, each) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup raspberry preserves/jam, preferrably seedless
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13×9 inch rimmed bakind sheet with aluminum foil and spray with baking spray.
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla, one at a time, until incorporated. Whisk the flour, salt and baking powder separately and then add to the batter. Mix just until combined. Save 2 cups of the shortbread batter and refrigerate. Press the remaining shortbread batter into the prepared baking sheet. Bake for about 15 minutes. Cool slightly. Meanwhile, mix the cream cheese and sugar until smooth and no lumps appear. Add the vanilla and eggs. Pour over the shortbread crust. Dollop the raspberry preserves over the cream cheese batter. Use a butter knife to swirl it around, making a marbled look. Take out the reserved refrigerated shortbread batter and grate it on a box grater over the cheesecake filling. Bake for about 35-45 min.