I found this recipe while searching for new party food ideas. The name caught my attention first...bacon cheddar whoopie bites?! Whoopie pies are sweet, right? Ok so they're not actually anything like a whoopie pie but they kind of look like a whoopie pie so why not? After reading through the recipe, I thought they sounded like a Southern style cheese straw, kind of a cheesy savory shortbread. These cheese straws have one up on ordinary cheese straws. These are sandwiched together with a cream filling. It sounded like a great combo to me. Besides they have bacon in them so they're already "Winning"....(hmm maybe it's the whoopie part that brought that Charlie Sheen quote to mind...;)
Source: Teresa Smith, Santa Rosa, CA, Bake-Off 2012 (adapted)
1/2 cup ricotta cheese, room temperature
6 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
2 tablespoons heavy cream or milk
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
3/4 cup butter, cut into pieces
2 cups finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
8 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
2 to 3 tablespoons ice water
Heat oven to 400°F. Spray large cookie sheets with no-stick cooking spray or line with cooking parchment paper. To make filling, in medium bowl, beat ricotta cheese and cream cheese with electric mixer on low speed until blended. Add milk; beat on medium speed 3 minutes until light and fluffy. Stir in lemon peel. Cover; refrigerate.
In food processor, add flour, baking powder and red pepper. Process until well blended. Add butter and process until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add cheddar cheese, pecans and bacon. Process with on-and-off pulses until mixture is consistency of fine crumbs. With food processor running, gradually add enough water through feed tube and process just until dough pulls away from side of bowl and forms a ball.
Shape dough into 1 1/4–inch balls; place 2 inches apart on cookie sheets. Using fingers, press each ball into about a 2-inch round.
Spread or pipe about 1 tablespoon filling on bottom of half of the rounds. Top with remaining rounds, bottom sides down. Store covered in refrigerator. Assemble these bites a couple of hours before you plan to serve them to let the flavors blend.
|These savory whoopie bites just maybe the hit of your next party!|