recipes

Baked

baked raspberry cheesecake

If you can measure, mix, pour and bake, then there’s no reason why this delicious specimen can’t be cooling on your benchtop, as this one did on mine recently.

I have no ability to take in the intricacies of an intriguing story or keep track of a workplace crisis and cook simultaneously – something must be ignored, usually the food. For that very reason, when friends are dining, I need to make sure as little attention as possible needs to be given to food after the gathering arrives.  A baked cheesecake is a clever culinary solution, as it can sit cooling its heels in the refrigerator from the day prior – its flavours rounding out beautifully by serving time. That being, not a thread or mere detail of the latest goss is lost, when all that is required is to slice and pass.

And as this recipe yields such a generous cake, there is plenty left over for neighbourhood coffee banter the following morning.

To ensure you miss nothing either at your next do, get this simple Baked Raspberry Cheesecake happening in your oven well in advance.

250g packet of Granita or other sweet biscuits
125g melted butter
250g softened cream cheese
250g ricotta cheese
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup sour cream
1 tbsp grated lemon rind
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp cornflour blended into 1 tbsp water
a generous handful or so of fresh or frozen raspberries

  1. Process biscuits to crumbs and then add melted butter. Process briefly until combined.
  2. Press this mix into the base of a large greased springform cake tin and place in the refrigerator.
  3. Process all of the remaining ingredients EXCEPT the raspberries until smooth.
  4. Pour this mix over chilled base. Sprinkle raspberries evenly over the top.
  5. Bake in a preheated 150 degree celsius oven for approximately 50 minutes or until cheesecake has set.
  6. Chill in the refrigerator until firm. Serve with thick cream.

raspberry cheesecake

Postscript: should you not be in possession of a food processor, don’t walk away. The biscuits can be crushed with a rolling pin and the filling beaten with a hand mixer.

recipes

Crumbs

There’s nothing like running up the front steps, flinging the front door open and inhaling the aroma of baked goods cooling on the bench top. School bags lie abandoned on the floor, while wolf-like ravenous appetites are sated by mouthfuls of crumbly, chocolately warm muffins.

This is a scenario that unfolds at approximately 4.00pm on an organised good day in our home.

You don’t necessarily need  post-school hunger to enjoy fresh muffins, as any mid-morning coffee aficionado will attest, and you could do a lot worse than scoffing one of these in the car on the arduous week-night commute. Simple to prepare – as they basically comprise pantry staples and anything to be used up – muffins are a lovely way to feel productive and contented in the kitchen.

If you want your next batch to resemble those photographed, see below, but for variation eg banana, walnut, blueberry, apple and so on, begin with the first five ingredients and then add your odds and ends.

1/4 cup olive oil
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups SR flour
1 cup raspberries (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup chocolate chips (milk or dark – your call)

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C and grease muffin tins.
  2. Mix together in a large bowl oil, egg, milk and sugar.
  3. Add the flour to the wet mix and stir to combine briefly – don’t over mix.
  4. Add raspberries and chocolate chips and mix through.
  5. Spoon into prepared tins and bake for approximately 20 minutes or until brown/inserted skewer is clean on removal.
  6. Cool in tin before turning out.
    (makes 12 muffins)

Postscript: Muffins do not have great longevity, so are best eaten within a day or two – we have never had to deal with that issue here…

health and wellbeing · recipes

Oats

While families tend to sit down to dinner and share a common meal, breakfast is usually quite an individual affair. Yours may be a slice of toast between your teeth as you reach behind you to close the front door, whilst for others it has to be the full shebang of eggs, bacon and so forth.

For me, nothing other than oats will do and I have my reasons.

Oats are hearty and hot and once downed with a cup of tea chaser, I really don’t need anything other than a piece of fruit until lunchtime.  In terms of nutrition they are a natural, complex carbohydrate that provides the perfect foundation for building your day (as well as a fruit/seed monument) upon. Honey and sugar however, can quickly unravel all the good work that oat-eating does, so I find by adding a handful of raspberries to the mix, their sweetness keep things in check. Fresh raspberries are prohibitively expensive and have such short seasonal windows, so I resort to the frozen variety and keep my freezer stocked all year.
Topping your oats with a sprinkling of pumpkin kernels and sunflower seeds, ensures you’re placed well on the fibre moral highground. I buy these seeds in bulk and store them in lovely recycled jars, within easy reach.
To your bowl of steaming oats add:
a handful of frozen raspberries
pumpkin kernels and sunflower seeds to your liking
top with skim milk
If you have a lovely oats breakfast combo, I would love to hear about it – I’m very happy to extend my repertoire.
Post script: If cooking a saucepan of oats is overly time consuming for working mornings, 90 second instant oat sachets are a reasonable standby.