I have always posted my food pictures on Facebook in an album that I have titled My Miracles in the Kitchen. It was a great way to post things but I found that it was just getting to be a bit much when I could only really comment on things in one or two lines, hence why we're here today!
My debate over the last few weeks when I began contemplating my inaugural post was how to start this blog. Obviously I could just yammer on about wanting to write this blog (as I have already done) however I wanted this post to be meaningful. Then, last week, while baking (surprise, surprise!), it hit me! Allow me to elaborate.
I was baking a chocolate cheesecake for my brother who has been away at school since January. We have always been close but over the last few years, not only has he become one of my best friends but also one of my primary taste-testers! It's been weird not having him around these last few months while I've been cooking up a storm. I have missed his ridiculous feedback about my creations; rating them "average at best". While I do enjoy his commentary, I know that there is something comforting about our sibling connection with food. For me, there is something so satisfying in making food for those you love and for my brother, these are the things that make him feel 'home'.
It was only appropriate that my inaugural posting be about coming home to food. My brother has always been an avid lover of cheesecake, regardless of the flavour. A few days before his homecoming, he submitted his request for a Chocolate Skor Bar Cheesecake. His instructions were simple: "Make a chocolate cheesecake, spread some caramel on top and sprinkle on some Skor bits!" Now, while I do love this child more than life itself, time constraints didn't quite allow me to fulfill his list of requests, so instead I opted for the more simple version: A Chocolate Lovers' Cheesecake. I have just recently discovered making cheesecakes, having made my first one less than 2 weeks ago for my brother's girlfriend's birthday (Happy Birthday T-Spice!). Her cheesecake turned out beautifully and it happens to be the one I snapped photos of!
The recipe was a simple Classic Philadelphia Cheesecake Recipe. It starts out with a simple graham cracker crust (22 graham crackers pulverized in the food processor mixed with a 1/2 cup of melted butter).
Then 3 packages of cream cheese, 3/4 cup of sugar, 1 tsp of vanilla (or if you live in my house, 1 tbsp) are mixed in a stand mixer and blended until combined. 3 eggs are added one at a time with the mixer on low speed. Your mixture should look something like this before you add the eggs.
Pour the mixture into the crust and put it in the oven to bake at 350 F for 40-50 minutes. When mine came out it had a few cracks in it.
I know that I should have used a water bath but I wanted to test drive this recipe first to see how it would turn out. Ironically enough, after allowing it to cool, it deflated a little bit and filled in its own cracks like its own dose of botox!
This one was topped with berries macerated in 1 tbsp of sugar.
For the chocolate variation, I simply followed the Chocolate Lovers' Cheesecake recipe which adds 8 oz of melted semi sweet chocolate after having added the eggs. Sooooo Yummy!
So I think that this is what this blog is more about... the comfort and connection that food provides in conjunction to those we love! Over the next however long, I hope to share more of my creations with you :)
Happy Cooking & Baking!