Sunday, April 4, 2010

Just Dessert

Happy Easter! Or, should I say Happy Spring Fertility Festival! (Hense the bunnies and eggs...). Anyways, it has been a very busy weekend. Yesterday I would have told you it was too busy and a regretted having so much scheduled, but today things seem a bit more relaxed and I am a bit more cheerful.

The weekend showcased my baking abilities and my abhorrent organization. Allow me to discuss the organization part first.

Starting yesterday morning:
9:20 AM Drive to the farmers market in worthington to meet friends (10 minute drive), then head up to Polaris and go to Target and Kroger, return home around 11:20
11:40 AM Go to Home Depot and Appliance Smart to Fridge Shop, wish I had price checked at Lowes when I was up there that morning. Return home around 1:00. Find the recipe I was going to make for easter. Promptly lose it.
2:00 PM Drive to the grocery store (half way to Worthington) to pick up things I forgot. Arrive home 2:30. Commence baking. Have people over, have a nice evening, so go bed.
9:00 AM Drive to the the grocery store to pick up things I forgot. Arrive home 9:30.

So... in other words, what should have been ONE trip, maybe two, was four. What should have been done with by early Saturday afternoon was dragged out until this morning. Now wonder I feel like things are too busy.

Onward to the nice part - the cooking. I have made three desserts for this weekend. At work on Friday we had a pot luck to celebrate making it halfway through probation. Our probation ends on Sept. 14th (the same day we started work... one full year). Hard to believe its half over, but my review went excellently. Anyways, for that pot luck I made my Mom's rhubarb crunch, and it turned out quite well. Yesterday was the trickiest dessert. It needed to be Kosher for Passover (Pesadich). I was having some people over to watch a classic movie, and one of them is Jewish. Kosher for Passover means almost no grains can be used. I found the recipe for a good crust online and then pretty much made up my own cheesecake recipe and I must say it turned out wonderfully.

Here is my new reciple, an Amanda Original:

Pesadich Strawberry Almond Cheesecake
3/4 cup sliced almond
2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup maza cake meal (this is a specialty ingredient for passover, if you don't care about it being Kosher you could use cornmeal or cookie crumbs)
1 stick butter

Toast the almonds (I did 10 minutes at 350 degrees), put them in food processor w/the cake meal and mix until the almonds are finally grated. Mix in butter (either in food processor or by hand). Melt the stick of butter and add to dry mixture, mix well and then pat down into the bottom and sides of a 9 inch springform pan. Be generous in the ammount that pats up the sides (let it go fairly high)

2 eggs
2 pkgs cream cheese, softened
1/2 sugar
Almond Extract (I actually used imitation and it was fine)
1 lb Strawberrys, sliced

Beat sugar into softened cream cheese until well blended add eggs and almond extract, beat until there is a regular consistency. Almond extract.. I did not measure, more than a dash though. Its too taste I guess.

Spread half of the filling into the bottom of the crust. Carefully place one layer of sliced strawberries on top of the filling (so it covers it once, you still should have a lot of strawberries left!). Spread the second half of the filling ontop of the strawberries. With a fork, crumble edges of the crust over the top of the cheesecake. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, or until the top cracks a little. It still will be a bit wobbly in the center.
Allow to cool fully. Heap remaining strawberries in the center and serve.

This seriously looks and tastes amazing!!

The final desset of the weekend is yet to be completed or eaten. It is Springtime Dessert, another recipe of my mom's with only a few twists. We will see how it turns out later today when I head up to my Grandma's for easter dinner!

I know this post is ridiculously long but I also wanted to mention what pleasant walk I had this morning. I am all for springtime weather, but I was afraid that the weather was moving to rapidly towards summer for my taste. However, the past two days have been lovely - all the windows are open and its not to hot, just fresh air. This morning the sun was shining, the birds were singing, and I was nice and comfortable in my sweatshirt and jeans. It was just so wonderful.

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