Thursday, May 15, 2014

Apron Story Number Two

This apron was made by my dear mother-in-law. She made numerous aprons for me, once she learned I loved to wear them, including one made of cow fabric (the cows glowed in the dark!). Mom G believed every apron should have a pocket - I am of the same belief! Most of the ones she made also have an adjustable strap like this one, rather than ties. I tied a knot in the end anyway, because the rings don't hold the strap tightly enough for all the wild arm motions I make while cooking.

This is one of the few aprons made by Mom G that I still wear; all the rest are threadbare and stained badly. But I can't bear to throw them away! My sweet mother-in-law lives in heaven now and can't make any new aprons for me. She did not use a pattern, but made them by laying an old apron on top of the fabric and tracing around it.

As I recall, she made a skirt for me, too, also without a pattern. I wish I still had that skirt! Even though it would no longer fit me, I could have made an apron out of it...

What did I bake while wearing my Summer Foods Apron? A Blueberry Swirl Cheesecake, of course! Sadly, I forgot to take a picture of the completed dessert and now it's all gone. You'll have to use your imagination. Here's a shot of some of the ingredients:

The recipe I applied here is found in my old Ultimate Philly Cheesecakes cookbooklet, a mail-away freebie obtained ages ago and well-worn. Of course, recipes are only springboards for creativity, so here it is with my adaptations:

Philly 3-Step Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake

2 8oz pkgs cream cheese, softened*
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla (or a quick splash - who needs to dirty a spoon for vanilla?!)
2 eggs (duck, of course)
1 9" graham cracker pie crust
3 Tbsp raspberry preserves (I had Grandma Hoerner's Blueberry on hand, and have no idea how much I actually used. Probably more than 3 puny tablespoons. 'Cuz it's the yummiest!)

1. Mix cream cheese, sugar and vanilla at medium speed with electric mixer until well blended. Add eggs; mix until blended. (Is it just me, or does this sound more like two steps?)
2. Pour into crust. Dot top of cheesecake with preserves. Dot? Just plunk a bunch of globs on there! Cut through batter with a knife several times for marble effect. Or leave the blobs intact if you want a puddly look. I swirled. (Again...this is at least three steps...)
3. Bake at 350°F for 40 minutes or until center is nearly set. Cool. Refrigerate 3 hours or overnight.
4. (They forgot the most important step.) EAT!

*Usually I use reduced fat Neufchatel cheese rather than full-fat cream cheese, but I found something new (to me) at Aldi's and wanted to see if it would be any nicer to my lactose intolerant tummy:  cream cheese made from Greek yogurt. Guess what? No tummy ache! Awesome stuff! It was in their "Special Buys" section, but hopefully it will stay around for a while. If not, I'll have to hunt for it at other stores.

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