Support a Local Filmmaker

A friend of mine is making a film about all the fantastic historic breweries in San Francisco. So far, he’s been funding the project out of pocket and with small contributions from the featured breweries, but making a movie is an expensive endeavor and he could use some help. Please check out his IndieGoGo page to watch the trailer, look for updates and read about the project.

Contributors get all kinds of fun perks depending on the amount including a pint glass, mention in the film credits, all the way up to a brewing session with on of the featured brewmasters! Check it out!

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Guest Post: A Birthday Surprise

First of all hello, I’m Colin, Freya’s partner. Like Freya, I’m a jack-of-all trades into all kinds of crafting and mischief. I knit, sew, cook, and brew. I’m excited to have the opportunity to post as a guest here on peculiarpurls.

When I asked her what type of cake she wanted for her birthday this week, she told me she didn’t know. After persistent questioning, she gave me some thoughts: “an almond raspberry cake, or maybe a cheesecake.” Well I’ve never made either of those cakes, but I accepted the challenge and set out to make both: an almond raspberry cheesecake! The recipe I used is adapted from Ina Garten’s raspberry cheesecake recipe on foodnetwork.

A beautiful cheesecake with a heart of raspberries on top. And a candle!

Here are the ingredients:

Crust

  • 10 honey graham crackers
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter

Filling

  • 2.5 lb cream cheese
  • 1.5 c sugar
  • 5 large eggs + 2 yolks
  • 0.25 c sour cream
  • ~1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 1.5 tsp almond extract

Topping

  • 1 half-pint raspberries

Instructions

Allow your ingredients to sit out for a while before cooking so that the cream cheese will soften. Preheat the oven to 350° Fahrenheit.

Pulverize the 10 graham crackers in a food processor (or by other means), and mix into 6 tbsp melted butter with 1 tbsp sugar. Press this by hand along the bottom and corners of a 9″ springform pan. Bake for 8 minutes so that the crust is crispy, and allow to cool. Raise the oven temperature to 450° Fahrenheit.

Mix the cream cheese and sugar together on high speed in an electric mixer for about 5 minutes until the consistency becomes light and fluffy (and delicious). Wisk together aggs and yolks in a separate bowl. Slow the mixer to medium speed and add the eggs and yolks a bit at a time. When this is mixed, add the sour cream, lemon zest, and almond extract. Pour this mixture onto the crust and place into the oven (carefully! I was worried the pan would overflow so I put some aluminum foil on the rack below).

Bake at 450° for 15 minutes, then drop the oven temperature to 225° Fahrenheit for 1 hour 15 minutes. When the time is up, there are a couple of options. If you want a perfectly beautiful cheesecake, leave it in the oven with the door open for about half an hour before cooling for an hour at room temperature, and later move to the refrigerator to set overnight (or at least for several hours). If you care less about the aethetics, you can  put it in the fridge earlier, but expect the top to crack. When you’re ready to serve the cake, rinse the raspberries and make a nice arrangement on top. I chose a heart for mine, and since this is a birthday cake, it had to have a candle. And here is what you get when you make a tasty cake for a pretty girl:

A pretty girl blowing out a candle.