My son loves cheesecake. He always orders it when we go out to eat. He asks me to buy some for him at the store. And I never do. And I feel guilty... I love my kids so much that I can't force myself to buy them a cheesecake (or anything else for this matter), that would hurt them with all those chemical and artificial ingredients that should be kept locked in a lab under biohasard warning sign.
I love my kids and I want them to enjoy food, the real food. And if I have to walk an extra mile looking for real food I'd do it.
So I start with a trip to a local farm, that raises happy goats and chickens, and all other animals on pasture. When it comes to food, I am a control freak: I need to know where did it come from, how it was raised and produced. I was excited to learn that in our neck of the woods natural farming exists, and I was able to find eggs from free range chickens, raw goat's milk, grass fed beef, naturally raised pork. All of this just a short drive to the Cedar Creek Farm in Cedarville, AR.
Eggs come from this chickens, that roam free on this beautiful pasture and have full access to their favorite food: bugs, grass, seeds, rocks...
Milk for the cheese come from a friendly goats, that eat, play and rest on the sun all day long.
First, I have a glass of fresh raw milk. It's a meditation moment: I close my eyes and smell a meadow. It puts a smile on my heart, and fills me with even more love. Love is an important ingredient to put in your food, or anything you create. And then I make a simple cottage (or farmer's) cheese for my cheesecake.
Sun Kissed Cheesecake
Ingredients: 1/2 cup organic polenta (plus Tablespoon for dusting the baking dish) 2/3 cup milk 1 Tablespoon butter (and some for greasing the baking dish) 4 cups farmer's cheese (drained overnight cottage cheese can be used) 3 eggs 1/2 cup sugar 1 Tablespoon sour cream, or buttermilk, or kefir 1 teaspoon good quality vanilla extract 1 Tablespoon Grand Marnier (optional) pinch of salt (1/4 teaspoon) 1/2 cup raisins 1 cup boiling water
Directions: 1. Pour boiling water over the raisins and let it soak for 20-30 minutes. 2. Pour milk in a small sauce pan and bring it to a boil, stirring to prevent milk from scorching. Take off the heat and slowly add polenta, stir in the butter and mix well. Cover, and let it cool.
3. Pre-heat oven to 180C/ 360F. 4. Prepare an 8 or 9 inch spring form: lightly grease it with some butter, dust it with 1 Tablespon polenta, and tap to knock out the excess polenta. 4. Drain the raisins and pat dry it. 5. In a mixing bowl (or stand mixer if you have one) whisk together eggs and sugar. Add cheese, sour cream, Grand Marnier (if using), and vanilla, and beat well. 6. Add polenta mash, and mix until all well blended.
7. Stir in raisins. 8. Place the thick batter into prepared spring form and with a spatula even the top.
9. Bake the cheesecake for 45-50 minutes.
It could be made in two small spring forms for a cute looking cakes
Cool cheesecake completely and serve with sour cream and strawberries, dusted lightly with sugar powder (whipped cream can be used instead of sour cream, but try with sour cream first, you'll be surprised!). ***
The recipe for cheesecake has been in our family for a very-very long time. And it was always made out of home made cottage cheese. Therefore I can't tell you what it would be if made out of store bought cheese. Making your own soft cheese is very easy, and I will make a post about it. For now, enjoy the cake! Sun kissed indeed. :)
See you, Marina P.S. This Thursday is our son's graduation from the High School. On Friday container should be here for packing. It looks like a busy week ahead. So... With all that said, my posts will be sporadic for the time being, until we move and settle somewhere. I also may not be visiting your lovely blogs as often as I'd like to. But I think of you all often. Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving your touching comments!
A few months back while having lunch with my friend Bryan I found out that he is a big fan of the Star Trek series and over the years had gathered quite an impressive collection of Star Trek memorabilia. When I learned of a new movie coming to the theaters today I ask Bryan if we could do something special to post on my blog. So... Are you Star Trek ready? *** Written by Bryan Fowler. Photo props are courtesy of Bryan, except the cake.
In the beginning, Star Trek took us on a galactic journey with Captain Kirk in command of the Starship Enterprise NCC-1701. The original television series began in 1966 and ran for three seasons. Its mission was to seek out other life forms and civilizations, and Russian cheesecake recipes. Also, the original cast was featured in 22 animated episodes in the mid 70's, and six movies between 1979 and 1991.
____ The second television series in the Star Trek universe brought us a new ship and crew, and took place on the Enterprise NCC-1701D over 150 years after the original series timeline. Star Trek: The Next Generation featured Captain Jean Luc Picard leading his crew on a seven year mission which was broadcast between 1987 and 1994, with summer breaks for eating cheesecake.
The Borg are bad guys in the Star Trek universe, assimilating entire species into their collective. Their blend of advanced cybernetics and organic life forms presents an almost unstoppable force. They declare to those facing assimilation that Resistance is Futile, but they occasionally discover that it is not. We encourage you to resist assimilation by the Borg, and prepare to assimilate some cheesecake. You'll be glad you did.
*** We had hard to describe fun working on this post, and after taking 157 photos we praised ourselves by a cup of tea with the cake, making of which (the cake) was a science experience by itself. Enjoy the movie, and come back tomorrow for the cake recipe!
See you, Marina P.S. We are moving to Washington State. I've been packing, packing, and don't see the end of things that needs to go in boxes. Container will be here next Friday. Teenager graduation in on Thursday. I also have several other events to attend. With all that said, my posts will be sporadic for the time being, until we move and settle somewhere. I also may not be visiting your lovely blogs as often as I'd like to. But I think of you all often.
My mother as any other mother in the world wants to know how her kids live, what they do, and she wants to be part of our life on a daily basis. Because she is six thousand miles away and lives on another continent she is happy for every bit of news from us. She likes to say that photos of our everyday life shrink the distance and she feels as she is here with us. So this post is my Mother's Day gift for my Mother. We love your Mom! :) Yesterday we went to a place called Wild Things Farm to pick some strawberries.
It was a lovely day to be outside.
We picked a few buckets of strawberries and a weekly dose of vitamin D.
Then we walked around the farm, didn't take the fun ride though.
Happy harvest... Can you imagine pies, jams, lemonades, and all other wild things that can be done with all this strawberries?!
Back at home I made a cheesecake. I've been working on the recipe for a week, and this one came out just right for our tastes.
With it we all had a delicious tea time.
I love having tea time with my Mother... And I wish to have one sometime soon...
Happy Mother's Day!
See you, Marina P.S. It looks like we will be moving back to Washington State in July. And we also have two graduations: our teenager is graduating from high school in May, and my husband is graduating from the residency in June. With all that said, my posts will be sporadic for the time being, until we move and settle somewhere. I also may not be visiting your lovely blogs as often as I'd like to. But I think of you all often.
Last night when our Teenager received a Varsity Letter Award I was fighting tears. It was another moment of realization that my baby has become a grown man and in a few weeks he will graduate from high school and enter the real world.
When did he grew up?! See you, Marina P.S. It looks like we will be moving back to Washington State in July. And we also have two graduations: our teenager is graduating from high school in May, and my husband is graduating from the residency in June. With all that said, my posts will be sporadic for the time being, until we move and settle somewhere. I also may not be visiting your lovely blogs as often as I'd like to. But I think of you all often.