I try to always wait for occasions to arise before I try a new recipe. I find it a practice that works well for me as it stops me consuming a dessert entirely on my own, and it also offers me feedback and room to grow. A few days ago, Mel and I were invited for dinner at a friend’s house and we decided to have a bake-off before the event. We would have plenty of judges at the dinner party, we would be able to make a mess in the kitchen, and most importantly it was so we could have some fun. For months now I have been sitting on a recipe for a pumpkin cheesecake that I have been dying to try but never had an occasion for. An Easter dinner party filled with guests seemed like the perfect time to whip out my note-book.
Mel decided that he wanted to go for a more traditional, unbaked cheesecake with a hint of lime and caramelized orange peel topping. I went the other rout. I wanted a warm, savory, rich baked cheesecake. A cross between a pie and cake. Let me tell you now that it was a tough competition. Mel usually sticks to cooking starters and mains where as I dominate the sweet tooth. I welcomed the challenge though and stepped up my game even further for this event.
By the time we were finished, the kitchen was a mild disaster zone, filled with cookie crumbs, smears of cream cheese, filling lined bowls and the smell of heaven from the oven. The results were worth it though. It was hard to declare a victor from the two of us as we went in such opposite directions with our desserts, I will say this though… I kicked his butt. But only because I don’t like traditional cheese cakes. (his was still amazing, but please don’t tell him I said so).
To tell you the truth though, in spite of the fact that everyone loved my version, I know there is room for improvement. For starters there needed to be double the amount of filling as it was a very shallow cake. I need to lighten up on some of the spices I put in because they became a bit overwhelming, and last but not least, I feel baking the base for a short period before adding the filling would have made it crunchier and more delicious. Minor adjustments, but always room for improvement.
On a different note, I have worked out what sweet treats I will be bringing to the Meet Market this weekend coming up. I will have on offer: carrot & walnut cupcake; chocolate almond cupcakes; hazelnut cupcakes; apple & date cookies with lemon drizzle icing; chocolate chip cookies; mini apple pies; and crystalized ginger. Mel is still working on his side of the menu but I guarantee that it will be SPECTACULAR!!! I look forward to seeing everyone there!
HAPPY EASTER EVERYONE!!! xxx