Santa Hat Cheesecake Bites

santahat

Today being Christmas Eve I wanted to share this special treat with you that I hope you will enjoy. The recipe yields 25 bite size treats.

Ingredients for Chocolate Crumb Crusts:

  • 1  Stick Butter (I used I believe It’s Not Butter for healthy substitution)
  • 1-1/2 cup (about 45 wafers, crushed) reduced fat vanilla wafer crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons Splenda
  • 6 tablespoons Hershey’s Unsweetened Cocoa

Cheesecake Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter (I used I believe It’s Not Butter for healthy substitution)
  • 2 (8 oz) pkg fat free cream cheese, softened
  • 1/8 cup + 1 Tbsp Splenda
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups white chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup fat free half & half, divided

Topping Ingredients:

  • 25 fairly small, fresh strawberries (or more if cutting more squares)
  • 1 (16 oz) pkg fat free cool whip

Instructions for Crust:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line an 8 by 8-inch baking dish with two large sheets of tinfoil (one going horizontally and one over the top of the other vertically. Make sure your sheets are long enough that you’ll have an overhang of foil over the edges of the pan. Also, be sure to mold it well to the pan).
  2. Brush foil with 1/2 Tbsp melted butter.
  3. In a mixing bowl, using a fork blend together crushed wafers and  melted butter until mixture is well combined and evenly moistened.
  4. Press mixture firmly into the bottom of the prepared baking dish (the bottom of a flat measuring cup or glass works well for pressing crust), set aside.

Instructions for Cheese Cake:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, using an electric hand mixer set on medium-low speed, blend together cream cheese and splenda until mixture is smooth, about 30 seconds.
  2. Add in eggs and vanilla extract and mix until well blended. In a separate microwave safe bowl, heat white chocolate chips with 1/3 cup half & half on 50% power in 30 second intervals, stirring after each interval until melted and smooth. Pour melted white chocolate mixture into cream cheese mixture and blend on low speed until combined. Tap bowl against counter top about 30 times to release some of the air bubbles then pour mixture over prepared crust in baking dish.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes then turn oven off and without opening oven door allow cheesecake to rest in warm oven for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes, then cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 3 hours or refrigerate for 6 hours.
  4. Once cheesecake is fully chilled and set, remove from freezer or refrigerator and lift cheesecake out of pan using the foil overhang. Cut cheesecake into squares (I’d recommend cutting them just a bit larger the the width of your strawberries. Also it’s nice to keep some clean paper towels close by to clean your knife while cutting squares).

Instructions for Topping:

  1. To assemble: cut a flat top off of each strawberry and lay flat side down over top of cheesecake. Fill a pastry bag (or Ziploc bag and cut a small tip of corner) with fat free whipped cream and pipe around strawberry then finish with a small amount over the top of the “hat”. Serve immediately (for do ahead- you can make cheesecake the day before then assemble within an hour of serving the following day). Store in refrigerator in an airtight container.
  2. I processed the wafer in a food processor but if you don’t have one you can place them in a large Ziploc bag, seal bag and finely crush with a rolling pin .
  3. Recipe Source: cheesecake bites – I adopted the recipe from Cooking Classy, Santa hat inspired by – daisy’s world who adapted it from Erica’s Sweet Tooth.

Hope you have a wonderful and peaceful holiday with your loved ones. Please check out  and like my Facebook Page. Beside link to my blogs, I also share links from Vogue, Style, Elle, Health Magazine, Women’s Health, American Heart Association and much more. Happy Reading.

Fat Free Hot Chocolate Mix

The holiday is not complete without enjoying warm hot chocolate with our loved ones in the cold holiday seasons. However, the hot chocolates can be full of calories and sugar. That’s today I am bringing a fat-free, sugar-free (diary free optional). Hope you enjoy the holidays and keep yourself warm with this healthy version of hot chocolate. Happy reading.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Splenda
  • 1/2 cup Unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 (1 oz) package fat-free sugar-free instant Vanilla pudding mix
  • 3 cups nonfat dry milk powder

Instructions:

  1. Mix all ingredients together.
  2. Store in airtight container.
  3. To make a cup of hot chocolate use 1/4 cup of mix and 1 cup cold water and heat up after mixing due to the instant pudding.
  4. Enjoy with homemade low calorie marshmallow.

Edible Fruit Tree

You says you cannot enjoy your own unique edible fruit creation for the holidays with your family at the fraction of the cost as the professional made kind and look just as great. I just as excited so find this unique creation while searching for unique easy to make creative holiday recipes for you guys at the Ginger and Garlic Blog. Hope you enjoy creating with unique treat with your loved ones. Happy reading.
Ingredients
  • 1 styrofoam cone (small or medium size) from your local craft store. It can be something like this.
  • Toothpicks
  • Cookie cutters with various shapes (similar to these)
  • Assorted fruits  such as green and black grapes, strawberries, kiwis, raspberries, mountain-dew and a honeydew melon.
  • Cilantro for garnish.

Instructions:

  1. If you only have a white one then you can drape some green paper on a white cone or attach fruits very densely so it resembles more like a tree trunk.
  2. Using the cookie cutters create various shapes out of the melon slices.
  3. Attach toothpicks to the styrofoam cone. Attach one piece each of a fruit to a toothpick. (Think free-form; as the tree starts building you will know more about which fruit combinations are looking better and how densely packed you want your tree to be).
  4. Continue building the tree as dense as you want!
  5. Use cilantro leaves as grass garnish.
  6. Enjoy your new edible fruit tree!!