Happy Belated Easter blog friends! I hope that you had a wonderful weekend celebrating the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.
We had 20 special friends and family members gathered around our Easter table this year which means I was one happy (and busy) girl. I spite of the chaos and business, nothing makes me happier than being surrounded by friends and family.
Saturday night we had a glow in the dark Easter egg hunt in the yard. (Who says teenagers don't like to hunt Easter eggs?)
After the kids found all of the eggs, they decided to hide them for the adults. Not sure who had more fun - the kids or the adults.
I tried to simplify the Easter menu this year since I had such a busy week last week. I was blessed with LOTS of orders for cute Easter cookies and cupcakes.
I baked a ham in the oven and smoked a turkey on the Big Green Egg for our dinner this year. It was simple and delicious. The highlight of our dinner was definitely the dinner rolls. I started with bunnies but they were kind of a disaster. (One of my friends mistook them for "swaddled babies" - LOL.) I also made some "chicks" - they were very cute and the topic of many conversations.
Table decorations were very simple too. The only thing that I could find that was blooming in my yard on Sunday was lilac. Fortunately, they made perfect mini centerpieces for my table.
I tried a new recipe for Easter dessert this year too. The New York Cheesecake recipe from the 2015 January/February issue of Cook's Illustrated seemed like the perfect thing to serve to my Easter guests. I've made lots of cheesecake recipes but this one was just a little bit different.
Even though I normally don't serve a new recipe to 20 guests on a special occasion, for some reason, I though this would be a good idea. Fortunately for me, it turned out great.
New York Cheesecake
6 whole graham crackers
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons butter, melted
24 ounces cream cheese
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoon vanilla
6 eggs + 2 egg yolks
Bake 13 minutes at 325. Reduce oven temperature to 200.
Beat cream cheese and 3/4 cup sugar and salt until fully combined.
Beat in remaining 3/4 cup sugar, sour cream, vanilla and lemon juice.
Brush sides of springform pan with 1 teaspoon melted butter. Pour filling over crust. Let sit 5 minutes to allow air bubble to rise to the top. Run a fork lightly across top of cheesecake to pop air bubbles.
Place cheesecake on lowest rack in oven and bake 3-5 hours. Use an instant read thermometer to check internal temperature of cheesecake. (Middle of cake should reach 165 degrees.)
Remove cake from oven and increase temperature to 500. Bake cheesecake on upper rack of oven until evenly browned. (Mine took 4 minutes to brown.)
Cool 5 minutes. Run a paring knife around edges of pan let cool 2 1/2 - 3 hours. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 6 hours.
Slice into 16 equal pieces.
Serve with homemade raspberry sauce.
I took this cake out of the oven just before I went to bed but had to set my alarm to wake me up in 2 hours so I could get it wrapped and put in the refrigerator. (Pretty sure I did that in my sleep because I barely remember getting out of bed.)
Other than the fact that I grossly underestimated the amount of time that it would take for this cheesecake to bake, I'd say that this recipe was a success. The cheesecake received rave review from my dinner guests and I didn't see anyone leave even so much as a bite on their plate. (In my world - that is a successful dessert recipe.)
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