Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Posted by on Aug 15, 2017 in Blog, blondies, Bready or Not, breakfast | 0 comments

I’m presenting many wonderful matcha baked goods this month, but this one, dear readers, is the most delicious. The most divine. The most appropriate way to celebrate the release of Call of Fire.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

My husband takes most all of my baked goods to work. These Matcha Cheesecake Bars earned a rare and vociferous response.

To directly quote, with expletives replaced Mad Lib style to make this work-safe and kid-safe:
“She needs to laminate that [noun for excrement].”
“Those were [verb for copulation, -ing] on point.”

Yeah. This recipe is a winner.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Plus, these bars are ridiculously easy to make. You make a crust. Mix up some green cheesecake. Do some layering and swirling.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Mind you, I’m not a big cheesecake person, but thanks to the cookie-like crust, these are not rich like standard cheesecakes. You really get the best of everything here, and the matcha powder adds a wonderful fresh flavor and a lovely green tint.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Do note that the type of green tea you use may produce different results. I used a Rishi sweet green tea blend that includes sugar, making it ideal for lattes or baked goods. [Addendum: Readers have baked this recipe using standard matcha powder and have been delighted with the results! So use whatever green tea you have handy. If you want it sweeter, just add a touch more sugar.]

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

I plan on re-making this with a variety of teas. Look for another version of this recipe in the coming months!

Adapted from Every Day Dishes.

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

This incredible recipe will please cheesecake lovers and convert non-cheesecake eaters as well. Note that different green teas may produce different results in taste and tint; sweet matcha powder will obviously contain more natural sweetness, but the recipe turns out well when standard matcha is used, too.

  • Crust
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 10 Tb unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 Tb vanilla extract
  • Cheesecake layer
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 Tb unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 Tb all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tb matcha (sweet or regular)
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven at 325-degrees. Line an 8x8 or 9x9 pan with aluminum foil and apply nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In a large mixer bowl, cream together the softened butter and brown sugar for about 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add 2 eggs and the vanilla extract, followed by the combined dry ingredients.

Use an uneven spatula to smooth out HALF of the batter in the prepared pan. Place the other half in another bowl for now. Clean the mixing bowl before the next stage, if desired.

To make the cheesecake layer, beat together the softened cream cheese, sugar, butter, flour, and matcha powder. Mix in the egg and vanilla until it is mostly smooth.

Pour about HALF of the cream cheese mix on top of the batter in the pan and smooth it out. Dollop the remaining crust and cheesecake batters over the top, and use a butter knife to swirl them together.

Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until it passes the toothpick test in the middle. Let cool at room temperature for an hour, then place in fridge to continue chill and set for another hour or two.

Lift it up by the aluminum foil and place on a cutting board to slice into bars. Store in a lidded container in fridge, with waxed paper or parchment between stacked layers.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Matcha Green Tea Cheesecake Bars

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CALL OF FIRE is out today!

Posted by on Aug 15, 2017 in Blog, call of fire | 0 comments

calloffire_500x332

Today is the day! Call of Fire is out! This sequel to Breath of Earth takes Ingrid and company to the Pacific Northwest as she evades the Unified Pacific and tries to find out more about her profound geomantic powers. Guest starring Theodore Roosevelt as himself!

I probably don’t have to remind you that first week sales are huge to a book’s publisher, so if you haven’t preordered, please do order in the next week or two. It’s available at pretty much every online bookstore. If your brick-and-mortar B&N or indie store isn’t carrying it, you can order it there (which might inspire them to get some extras for their shelves, too).

Thank you for your support!

#SFWAPro

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Sunday Quote releases CALL OF FIRE on Tuesday!

Posted by on Aug 13, 2017 in Blog, Quote | 0 comments

“Librarians save lives: by handing the right book, at the right time, to a kid in need.”
~Judy Blume

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Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

Posted by on Aug 9, 2017 in Blog, Bready or Not, cookies | 0 comments

The second edition in our baked-goods-with-matcha book release celebration features sliced cookies: Matcha Almond Cookies!

Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

I found a base recipe for this that produced a very small amount of cookies. I doubled the amounts, added vanilla, rewrote everything… and here we are.

Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

These are essentially shortbread cookies with a vibrant green hue and fresh matcha flavor. The almonds add a sporadic, wonderful crunch.

Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

I found this dough surprisingly easy to work with. As I sliced cookies, some of them crumbled–an inevitable hazard, with nuts in there–but it was easy to shape the dough into a cookie again.

Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

The type of green tea you use may produce different results. I used a Rishi sweet green tea blend that includes sugar, making it ideal for lattes or baked goods.

Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

Like most shortbreads this just begs to be accompanied by a nice hot cup of coffee or tea. Perhaps a book, too. Might I recommend Call of Fire? It’s out next Tuesday! (Was that smooth?)

Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

These shortbread-like cookies embody the fresh flavor of matcha powder and the lovely crunch of sliced almonds. Note that the dough needs to chill for at least an hour prior to baking. Different green teas will produce different results in taste and tint; look for a sweet matcha variety to use here.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons sweet matcha powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup sliced almonds, lightly chopped

In a small bowl, sift together the flour, matcha powder, and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream the butter, vanilla extract, and powdered sugar until it becomes light and fluffy.

Slowly add in the flour mixture until dough is formed. Stir in the almonds.

Stretch out a long piece of plastic wrap. Place dough in the middle to form a 1 1/2 inch log, then wrap well with the plastic. Repeat again so that all of the dough is in logs. Place them in the fridge to chill for at least an hour, or a day or two.

Pre-heat oven at 325-degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Use a sharp knife to slice the dough into 1/4-inch thick rounds. If the dough crumbles, compress it to reshape. Arrange cookies about 2 inches apart on the pan.

Bake for 14 to 16 minutes; set cookies on wire rack to completely cool. Store in a sealed container.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not Original: Matcha (Green Tea) Almond Cookies

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