Hi Bears & Baking fans! This week the Bears head to Miami and I am super excited for this game, if I do say so myself. My single girlfriends and I started a little tradition of our own several years ago where we go to an away Bears game and see one new NFL stadium every season. This year we chose the Miami game & the Hard Rock Stadium, home of the Miami Dolphins. So I’ll be heading out on Friday and ready to cheer my face off for the Bears on Sunday! I can’t wait.
When I think of Miami or Southern Florida, I think of Key Lime. So my initial thought was to make Key Lime Pie bars for the team, but then I talked to my brother and he flat out said without hesitation, “Nobody here likes lime or lemon, so, no, don’t make those”. Well alrighty then…Ha! Sometimes I wonder if my brother just tells me stuff like this because HE doesn’t like something. Haha! But I always listen to what he says, since after all, he is the one getting and giving the feedback from the guys week after week. With that in mind, I switched it up and made something I know that the players and staff always like: CARAMEL. I have an awesome recipe for a spring form Dulce de Leche cheesecake that I was actually making for a local restaurant in Roscoe Village, so I searched for a similar recipe but in the form of bars, and came across one that worked out perfectly! So this is what I sent to Halas Hall this morning and am sharing with all of you today. They are easy, and taste just like my spring form cheesecake, but take a fraction of the time to bake, and they can be cut up into nice little “grab-n-go” treat bars. And no water bath is required while baking these. My brother actually just texted me a little while ago and said, “They LOVE LOVE LOVE the Caramel cheesecake!!” So, I am happy and proud to say that treat day week 6 is a hit! I hope all of you find time to make these, because they are delicious and after all, you deserve them! 🙂
Here are a few tips I have for you when you make these at home:
- The recipe calls for “purchased dulce de leche”. Don’t even bother, unless you have a name brand that you know and absolutely love that is available to you at retail. If not, I ALWAYS make my own dulce de leche and would recommend you do so as well. All you need to do is purchase Sweetened Condensed Milkd (my favorite is Eagle Brand, because I like their easy open can lids) in the 14oz size tin cans. Simply take the paper label off of your can and put it in a pot covered with water. Bring the water to a boil, and then lower your heat to a slow low boil, almost to a simmer, and keep it on the stove cooking for 3 hours. 3 hours will give you a thick, rich and creamy caramel which is perfect for these cheesecake bars! I boil 4-5 cans at a time and keep any unopened cans in the fridge for easy use the next time I want to make these bars or a spring form cheesecake. And if you have a half used can, just take a glass mason jar and keep the leftover caramel in the jar in the fridge. Oh, and when you go to boil these, lay the cans on their side – because that way they won’t rattle around in your pot making noise driving you crazy for 3 straight hours!
- I always use salted butter – even though this recipe calls for unsalted
- I ALWAYS use KRAFT Philadelphia cream cheese – full fat, and make sure it is room temp. It just works perfectly in cheesecake recipes. That is my opinion.
- Your eggs should really be room temperature too, but if not, you can put them in a bowl and run some warm water over them for a few minutes.
- If you are making these a day or two ahead of time, like myself, I would hold off sprinkling your sea salt until the very last minute before serving, otherwise it will just dissolve into your caramel topping, and it could possibly taste too salty. And you can omit the sea salt altogether… it is not mandatory…these bars are delicious with or without it! I omitted the salt today.
- The caramel can get a little runny, so when I serve these I put them in foil cupcake liners which make them easy to pick up and eat on the go.
Ok, here is the recipe from a blogger named The Recipe Critic: Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Bars
Thank you for reading my blog and GO BEARS!!!!!!