Ahoy there, Internet! Remember me?
I started this blog to aid my tumultuous transition to a nourishing, yet still highly restrictive diet towards the beginning of high school, when I realized starvation wasn’t as pretty as I had once thought. Now, four years later, I’ve just finished my first semester as a college freshman, and I have survived the dining hall!
Above: Flower and moth in McMinnville, OR residential neighborhood garden.
Over the years, my relationship with food has evolved, and not always in a positive way. There were years where I obsessed in anguish over differences of 5 calories; days where I abstained from eating on account of unrequited attraction to a crush who couldn’t care less about my numbers.
I’m not going to claim I have “made a full recovery” at this point; recovery is one of those things you don’t achieve in eating disorders; you just keep plodding along on the endless journey. With that said, though, I have made giant strides in leaving behind my food obsessions, thanks to my dedicated family, my expert support team, and my own conscious decisions. I can end the year thankful for all the people who continue to insist upon believing in me.
Above: Tree in a McMinnville, OR park, founded by a graduating class of Linfield College (Go Wildcats!)
I made these mini cheesecakes when I came home from college for Thanksgiving break in November, so that shows you how connected I’ve been to the blogging world lately. Truth be told, I haven’t made anything blog-worthy since, though I’m now home for winter vacation so that could change soon!
My mom said she liked these, but they didn’t have any recognizable flavor she could put her finger on. I guess cookie dough cheesecake is already pretty innovative, and adding spiced apples makes it even weirder. So only make these for your party if your guests are willing to step outside their comfort zone!
If unusual, the combination certainly works. The crisp, juicy apple is a nice break from gooey winter baked fruits, delivering all the unadulterated nutrients of fresh fruit. The cookie dough yogurt “cheesecake” is satisfying and protein-rich. The chocolate chunks are a must!
As a no-bake and easily gluten-free recipe, these cuties could spice up your holiday get-together or just make a nice anytime treat to have in the fridge.
Mini Apple Spiced Chocolate Chunk Cookie Dough Cheesecake Parfaits
Makes 9 mini cheesecakes
- one whole, fresh Cripp’s Pink Apple (or your favorite apple variety)
- dash of cinnamon
- splash of nutmeg
- pinch of ginger
- 2 Laughing Cow Light Creamy Swiss cheese triangles
- one single-serving container (5.3 oz) of plain nonfat Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour – or use your favorite flour; almond for instance would make the whole thing gluten-free!
- 2 tbs Truvia Baking Blend
- 2 tbs creamy peanut butter
- 9 Hershey’s Special Dark chocolate kisses
Arrange 9 regular-sized aluminum muffin cups. Remove chocolate kisses from any freezing or refrigeration so they will be easier to chop later.
Place cheese triangles and plain yogurt in blender; puree until smooth. (Retrospectively, blending by hand may have yielded a faster and more effective result than the blender did.)
Blend in the flour, Truvia Baking Blend, and peanut butter. Mixture should be smooth and very thick.
Slice and dice the apple into bite-sized morsels. Toss to coat with the spices.
In each prepared muffin cup, layer apple pieces with a dollop of the yogurt-flour mixture on top.
Unwrap each chocolate kiss. One by one, chop them and sprinkle the chunks over the cheesecakes. You will use about one chocolate kiss per cheesecake.
Refrigerate cheesecakes for several hours (I did about 3.25). Serve cold.
My holiday wish for you is a perfect balance of sweet love from the warm hearts of those that count, savory labor serving whomever you are able to enjoy a better life, and whatever parts of life are dark chocolate to you, I hope they flurry to your window like snowflakes to warm your heart this season! Cheers.