Friday, August 15, 2014

Churros Anytime! With Churro Cheesecake Squares

I  made churros in the past, but that isn't a treat I have time to make often. All that oil, all that prep... for just one or two perfect churro treats. Yeah, a batch makes more than just a few, but who would I have to take those off my hands? Only making churros once in a blue moon is probably a good thing. There is something magical about the eggy and light fried dough covered in cinnamon and sugar that is a real treat.

For me, churros also remind me of Disneyland.

Don't judge. This Oregon girl hasn't had a churro outside of a Disney theme park. Truth be told, I gained most of my churro experience in Japan - Tokyo Disneyland. But, that story can wait for another day.

For all these reasons the idea of making a churro-style bar cookies really got me excited. But, it got my husband even more excited. Did I mention he also loves churros?

Okay, this recipe is a total cheat, but it is very fast and easy to whip up for a weekend treat or after school celebration. Perfect score on a spelling test? How about a churro?

This recipe creates a cream cheese layer between cinnamon and sugar drenched crescent roll dough. See how easy that is?

And the result is a bar cookie that holds it's shape nicely and is rich and sweet, just like the original.

Churro Cheesecake Squares

You Will Need:
2 -8oz. cans of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
2 pkgs. cream cheese, at room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract if you prefer)
1 egg
1 1/2 c. sugar, divided
4 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg *optional
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

Prehead the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9"x13" baking dish with non-stick spray.

In a small bowl, whisk together 1 cup sugar, 4 tablespoons of ground cinnamon and 1/4 tsp. nutmeg. Set aside.

Unroll 1 can of crescent dough onto your work surface. With a rolling pin, gently roll to fit your dish and to seal the perforated seams. Place this in the baking dish with the ends of the dough coming up each side. Sprinkle a handful of the cinnamon mixture over the bottom crust.

In a stand mixer start by beating the softened cream cheese till light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add in the egg, vanilla bean paste and 1/2 cup sugar till fluffy again. Spread this evenly over the crust.

Roll out the remaining can of crescent dough, rolling together the seams as previously done. Then lay over the filling, brush with melted butter and top with the remaining cinnmaon and sugar mixture.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until the top crust turns golden brown. Let the bars cool to room temperature before slicing and serving.


And there you have it. Easier and faster than making homemade churros... but just as delicious!

I hope your family enjoys them as much as mine did.
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