When I was coming home from college and I topped that hill going down into Pleasant Valley, I always felt a sense of peace coming over me. I loved college – don’t get me wrong. But there was something soothing about coming home, seeing my family and, especially, eating my Mom’s cooking. It got me every time and I would grin for the last mile until I hit our driveway.
I would pull out a large bag of dirty clothes, deposit them in the laundry room (Mom did them. I remember calling her in a panic from my dorm asking what temperature to put my clothes on to clean them. I was woefully lacking in some life skills) and hit the kitchen.
Almost every weekend, Mom would bake me a cheesecake, usually strawberry and sometimes blueberry. I would tear into it, enjoying the creaminess of it, the sweet fruit complementing the cream cheese. I loved those cheesecakes. I remember being incredibly shocked when I came home one time and Mom had not baked the cheesecake. I believe I pouted. Looking back on it, I was an ungrateful little snot. I have no idea how my family put up with me. Thankfully, I’ve grown with age.
I can’t eat an entire cheesecake each weekend anymore. Well, I can, but I would be the size of a small house and I’m already a big girl. But I miss those cheesecakes. I miss those times. When I started this venture, I decided to try to recreate Mom’s cheesecake. She’s gone so I can’t ask her the recipe but this is the one I’ve found that comes the closest. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. At the cafe, we cut it into bite size pieces and either dunk it in chocolate or enjoy it as it is. Experiment, have fun with it. And you can put either strawberry or blueberry on the top. It can even be the store bought pie filling kind. I won’t tell anyone.
9 whole graham crackers
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
2 8 ounce packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbls all purpose flour
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
16 ounces semisweet chocolate
4 tbls vegetable oil
Preheat oven to 325F. Line 8×8 dish with foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
Combine graham cracker crumbs and butter. Press evenly into 8×8 lined pan. Bake until light brown. Reduce heat to 300F.
For filling, beat cream cheese and sugar until fluffy. On low speed, add in sour cream, eggs, vanilla, flour and salt and beat until just combined. Pour batter over crust and bake for 30 minutes or until middle of cheesecake is set.
Let cool. Freeze overnight.
Once frozen, lift cheesecake out of pan and gently peel away foil. Cut cheesecake into 36 bite size squares.
Melt chocolate with oil. Dip cheesecake squares into melted chocolate. Refrigerate. Store in refrigerator or freezer.