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Gingerbread Cheesecake Bars with Orange Whipped Cream
Gingerbread Cheesecake Bars with Orange Whipped Cream

Gingerbread Cheesecake Bars with Orange Whipped Cream

1 Hr(s) 20 Min(s)
20 Min(s) Prep
1 Hr(s) Cook
What You Need
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1 cup crushed gingersnap cookies
1/4 cup butter, melted
2 pkg. PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
2 egg s
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup unsulphured light or medium molasses
1 tsp. vanilla
3 tsp. ground ginger
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
Pinch of salt
1 cup heavy whipping cream
4 to 6 Tbsp. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. orange extract
Zest of 1 orange for topping
ground cinnamon for topping
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Let's Make It
Make the gingerbread cheesecake bars: Prepare an 8-inch square baking pan with a parchment paper sling, and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. In a medium bowl, stir together the gingersnap crumbs and melted butter with a fork until the crumbs are moistened. Using a flat-bottomed glass or dish, press the crumbs evenly and flat into the prepared pan. Bake for 8 minutes and set it aside.
In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese and brown sugar until there are no lumps. Mix in the molasses, vanilla extract, ginger, cinnamon, ground cloves, nutmeg, and salt. Add the two eggs and beat until just combined, scraping the bottom of the bowl to ensure everything is evenly mixed. Pour the cheesecake mixture onto the prepared crust and smooth it out with a spatula. Put the bars into the oven with an oven-safe casserole dish full of water on the oven shelf below (similar to a water bath, this helps achieve a more even bake). Bake for 45 to 55 minutes until the cheesecake is firm ("no liquid jiggle in the middle," I like to say). Remove them and chill them in the fridge for at least two hours.
Make the orange whipped cream: Combine the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and orange extract in the bowl of a stand mixer, and beat to stiff peaks, tasting just as the cream starts to take shape to determine if the sweetness is to your preference or if you'd like to add more powdered sugar. When the cream reaches stiff peaks, use a pastry bag with a big star tip to pipe 16 whipped-cream rosettes on the chilled bars. Top with orange zest and sprinkled cinnamon. Serve chilled.
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