I must be in nesting mode because I suddenly felt the need to make 200 mini pumpkin cheesecakes with cinnamon whipped cream today. As in a trance, I gathered the ingredients and began the process of rolling out my own graham cracker crust and whipping up cheesecake batter from scratch. Of course, I didn’t do this on my own, but with the help of Paula Deen, the chef to whom I turn whenever I need a good dessert recipe.
So Ollie and I spent the afternoon following her recipe for pumpkin cheesecake and stuffing ourselves silly with batter and buttered graham cracker crumbs.
Paula is to dessert like Jesus is to eternal life. She pretty much has the market cornered. Anything — banana pudding, strawberry cake, blueberry tiramisu — she’s a culinary genius. Not that she’s bad at other recipes (um, her pimento cheese is to die for) but I just really love her desserts.
One thing I think is great is that she is unapologetic about her use of fat. Whole milk, real butter — things that make dessert an actual dessert. Because if you’re going to eat a slice of pie — why not have it come with all the calories that a pie’s supposed to have? Plus, I’m a firm believer that if you use full fat ingredients, you actually eat way less because it’s actually satisfying. And even if you don’t eat less — oh well! It just tastes better!