Thursday, July 14, 2016


If I were given the choice to have a single item to file under desserts, it would be today's subject; cheesecake. I confess there may not be a valid reason as to why this Wonderment to Humanity hasn't once featured under BFMK spotlight, an utter shame that confounds me as much as it does you.

You could argue (and I'd agree) that this is the quintessential all-meets-one dessert, in its infinite variations, tiered, airy soft like a mock mousse, still firm to the slice, and never ceasing to make an impressionable, buxom sideways view.  Flavorwise, it is most unlike the frozen grocery staple, one which I may have eaten for many of the BH (Before Homemade) cheesecake years of my life.

I've sectioned this formula as an end-to-end general outline. You'll see, it's clearly magnificent as is, but gets epic ridiculous when adornments and gildings come along for the ride (see fresh fruit, mint notes at screen bottom), being that it would appeal to The Normals as well as The Hard to Please( I'm sure these are only rarities that exist at my table, right?).

It's where I mention the two mouths, who make it test through everything that passes this kitchen and often play up tactics of extreme, mean culinary criticism. The same brutal duo, exercise profuse gratefulness each time a pie is made, where for an instant they sprout wings and halos, and their convincing testimony make for intervals between cheesecake repeats shorter each time.

The basic tenets of airy light cake construction consist of everyday pantry/refrigerator staples, pertinent in rendering harmony and evenhanded bliss between tastes, textures. The result: an outlay of almostcake almostpudding, almostpie becomes the easiest of realities with a few blocks of cream cheese, half a pound of butter and enough cookie sand.

Anything you really consider "labour" is sent to the oven for a good part of an hour. And if you follow the rules the rest of the way, you'll be doing somersaults in the air. Suggestions of an accompanying pan of water, of cake cooled, calmed and collected for further refrigeration are instructional mandates in taking the beneficial to several bars beyond.

As our conversation comes to an end, I urge you to get rolling, and follow through with this spreadsheet while I return to my season of chaos and hope for some long awaited miracles, including a house that selfcleans.
How do you not love edible buttery gravel?  
  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • ¼ cup almonds, crushed or finely ground
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 pound cream cheese (2 -8 ounce blocks), softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups sour cream
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
Topping (optional)~ assorted berries, fruit(my favorite:peaches), mint, fruit sauces

  • Preheat oven to 325°F.
  • Stir together crust ingredients until mixture resembles a crumbly moist sand.
  • Line an 8 inch lightly greased springform pan with crumb-butter mixture. Use the bottom of a glass to evenly press the crumbs onto the bottom and an inch up the sides of pan. Refrigerate.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat on medium the cream cheese until smooth and creamy. 
  • Add eggs one at a time and beat well, scraping down bowl between additions.
  • Pour in sugar and beat for 2 minutes.
  • Add sour cream, orange zest and vanilla. Continue beating on medium until all ingredients are incorporated, but not overmixed, and mixture is smooth and creamy. 
  • Pour the filling into the crust lined pan. Place this in the middle rack of the oven. Fill another cakepan half way up with water and place on lowest rack of the oven. This maintains some moisture level in the oven and keeps cheesecake from cracking.
  • Bake for 40-50 minutes until cheesecake is mostly firm with some jiggle in the center.
  • Take out and let cool in pan completely. Afterwards, refrigerate and chill, loosely covered for unto 4 hours.
  • Top with fruit, mint or berry sauce when serving.

Mint. Fruit. Sauce. No sauce. Fancy or as low key as you like. It''s all good.