Recipe: Raspberry White Chocolate Cheesecake

October 14, 2013

Imagine you are a woman who has been in an unhappy marriage for many years. Early on in this marriage, you and your husband adopted a child from Africa and disagreed over how the child should be treated. (Okay, in the real version you kidnapped the kid, but I’m trying to modernize this analogy so bear with me.) Your husband didn’t think your adopted daughter deserved to get allowance for her chores like your other children, and he beat her whenever she did something he didn’t like. At one point during this disagreement, he threatened to divorce you but you wouldn’t allow it. Eventually you won the argument but he’s been bitter ever since. Now, years later, you are arguing again—this time over everything.

Your oldest son, who is now an adult, recently announced his engagement to his boyfriend of five years. Your husband will not allow your son to get married because he believes homosexuality is a crime against nature and claims that your son getting married to a man would ruin your oldest daughter’s heterosexual marriage.

Back when you and your husband were arguing about your adopted daughter’s rights, he built an extension on the house and insisted that she stay there because it’s separate (but equal). The extension happens to fall on the other side of the town line. The other town–the one your adopted daughter technically lives in–has a much inferior school. You’ve argued that this is unfair and she should either be allowed to move into another room and attend the school the rest of your children go to or that you should work towards improving her school. Your husband doesn’t see this is a problem and denies it is a result of his previous animosity towards her. He also votes down the school budget every year and argues with the board of education to get evolution and sex education taken out of the curriculum.

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Recipe: Cashewcake

May 14, 2012

I love cheesecake—madly, deeply, unabashedly. In a perfect world, I could eat an enormous slice of cheesecake every day without becoming obese and developing Type 2 diabetes. But if we Americans have learned anything in the past decade, it’s that cheesecake has consequences. (So does invading a Middle Eastern country on the pretext of eradicating WMD, but the verdict is still out on whether or not we’ve learned that lesson.)

Roughly one out of every three adult Americans is obese. One out of every six American children is obese. Not overweight. Not chubby. Obese. Given this, it’s not surprising that roughly one out of every three adult Americans has prediabetes and one in twelve already has diabetes. In fact, diabetes is currently the seventh leading cause of death in the United States. What’s the number one leading cause of death? Heart disease. And what are some of the major risk factors for heart disease? Diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure.

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Recipe: Raspberry-Vanilla Pudding Cakes

January 22, 2012

If you read last week’s post, you know I have a problematic relationship with ovens and that this has led me to experiment with alternative ways of making dishes that are traditionally baked or roasted. Ovenless these last few weeks, my focus turned to cake. After all, two weeks without cake? The horror!

I do realize I could have bought cake. And that there are plenty of desserts that don’t require baking—mousse, panna cotta, no-bake cheesecake, stovetop pudding, ice cream, to name a few. And I’m quite sure that in the past I have survived more than two weeks without eating cake. No one has ever died of cake withdrawal that I’m aware of.

However, the inability to eat or cook something, for whatever reason, makes me crave it all the more. When I was living in Egypt, I made my own ricotta cheese, rolled out pasta with a rolling pin until my hands were the color of boiled lobsters, and fried tortillas to make chips for guacamole (actually, tortilla chips are available in Cairo, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to spend $7 on a bag of crumbled Tostitos). And so, for me, not being able to bake a cake is a challenge, not an inconsequential irritation. Thus began my crock-pot cake journey that resulted in these delectable Raspberry-Vanilla Pudding Cakes.

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