Happy Summer! Here are the books I’ve been reading, and a recipe I created for book club! I had leftover wonton wrappers from making potstickers, so I thought it would be fun to fill them with cheesecake. But you could use graham crackers and butter or stuff hulled strawberries, too.
I actually requested this book from our local library, and they must have had enough requests because St. Charles County Library now has it! “Don’t Trust Your Gut” is about looking at how data can quantify and predict things that humans are not so great at predicting. One of the #1 predictors of a kid’s success in the future? The neighborhood they grow up in. For example, the average increase in income (when taking to account many, many factors) for growing up in Seattle WA is 11.6% If you like sports, he has an entire chapter analyzing sports and genetics. The scientists took data from the Olympics, MLB, NBA, and many other sports leagues and crossed that data with how many sets of identical twins are in the sport. Since identical twins have the same DNA and they had so many people in the sample size, they concluded certain sports lend themselves to genetics (I know we already KNEW that!), but there are some surprising sports that don’t. There are so many fun tidbits in the book. The average age entrepreneur starting a business? 41 years old. He also tells how the Airbnb.com business got started which is quite fascinating since it started booming right before Covid. So, if you like data, this book would be fun for you.
Lemon Cheesecake Bites
These would be perfect during a 4th of July get together! There is no lengthy cheesecake water bath baking time or anything like that. Plus instead of whipping cream, I substitute Greek yogurt. You can make the wontons the day before and the cheesecake the day before as well. Just add the mixture to the wontons a few hours before the party and you are set!
Don’t like cheesecake? Wonton wrappers are great in the mini muffin pan for all kinds of fun recipes! Elegant Artichoke Cups were a big hit when I used to sell Pampered Chef. I’m linking this recipe and NOT the one from the Pampered Chef website because they changed the recipe.
Fill with taco meat, or sloppy joe meat, or chicken filling…. lots of fun options really! Just oil or butter the wontons, press them into a mini muffin pan, and bake for 8 minutes at 325 degrees! I watch closely for browning.
Lemon Cheesecake Bites
- 24 wonton wrappers
- 1 Tb butter, melted
- 8 oz. neufchatel cheese or cream cheese
- 1.25 cups vanilla greek yogurt (I like oikos brand and use 2-5.3 ounce cups)
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp. lemon zest (or use 3 packets of TruLemon)
- 1 cup Berries such as strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries (Fresh mint would look pretty, but if you ever had orange juice and toothpaste, you know that mint and citrus don't taste good together)
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. You will need the wonton wrappers, a mini muffin pan, a pastry brush (or bbq sauce brush) and melted butter. Brush the butter on both sides of the wrapper and gently mold into the muffin cup. Do this for all 24.
- Bake for 7-9 minutes. The bottoms will be light brown and the top edges will be browning as well. You will notice if any parts are still raw looking by the pale color. Once done, remove from oven and allow to cool.
- To make the filling: Warm the cream cheese in the microwave to room temperature or allow to sit out to come to room temperature. Add the yogurt and microwave for about 30 seconds to warm everything up. Beat the cream cheese and yogurt together with a hand mixer on high until smooth. Add lemon zest and powdered sugar. Beat on low to incorporate and then on high for 30 seconds.
- To add to the cups: Once the cups have cooled, you can fill them with the mixture. You can spoon it in with two spoons. Or, you can use a 1M tip and pastry bag to pipe for a fancy presentation. Or, you could spoon the mixture into a ziplock bag, cut off the corner, and use that to pipe the cheesecake mixture.
- Top with berries. Chill in the fridge for up to 3 hours or serve immediately. The cheesecake will eventually make the wontons soggy if kept overnight.