Sunday, October 6, 2013

The Man of the House

It must be rough getting older.  I wouldn't know.  Pat had a fun birthday with food made by his loving wife at home, and pies made by himself to take into work for his coworkers.  They always bring in food for their own birthday and send out some sort of riddle by email for everyone to figure out their age.  Pat made 2 pumpkin and 2 french silk.  Here's his riddle:

My new age is a semi prime that is not the square of a prime.  You can count to my age in base six using your fingers (with the left hand representing the “sixes” digit and the right hand representing the “ones” digit).   I am old enough to be a US senator.   One of the digits in my age is one of the prime numbers used to form the semi prime that is my age.  I am not 33.

I said, 'there's no way I would ever figure that out', and he said, well you already know how old I am!  (Dork.)

I made garlic fries nachos for dinner.  I was going for a ball park feel since I know SF does some excellent garlic fries, and he said the best nachos he ever had were at a baseball game where it was loaded with toppings.  So I seasoned up some ground beef with onions, chili powder, cumin, garlic, red pepper flakes, paprika, salt and pepper, and a pinch oregano.  Once it was all cooked, I added a can of black beans (drained) and let it hang out on low while I made everything else.  We topped our garlic fries with the meat mixture, palta (avocado, evoo, lemon juice), pico de gallo, jalapeño cheese sauce (no velveeta here), and sour cream.  It was really good!  I rolled up the leftovers the next day in flour tortillas and put them in a greased baking pan for about 30 minutes and the kids liked that even better.  Yum... burritos with meat, beans, fries, and melty cheese and pico de gallo on the side!

Then half of the family ran out the door to soccer practice and when they got back we had cake.  I made a cheesecake because it's one of Pat's favorites.  I've tried making cheesecake before from famous food network chefs and not been impressed, but this one was as good an anything I've ever eaten anywhere! That includes Cheesecake Factory and Claim Jumper. I'll put the recipe below, but you need a 10" round spring form pan and you have to make it two days ahead of time.  I love all different toppings and flavors for cheesecake, but Pat just loves canned cherry pie filling, so we had plenty of that on the side!

I tried to arrange some special weekend in Santa Fe for us since the last 7 months have been pretty difficult- and before that I was pregnant for 9 months!  I wanted to go to La Fonda.  Not this La Fawnduh!

This one!

But I'm still not well enough, and we talked ourselves out of spending that much money that we don't have!  That was good of me, right?!   But someday man! 

Today he made himself mushroom soup because he loves that, and last night we went out to Red Robin because he loves their burgers and their endless fries.  The kids each gave him gifts: back massages, nice cards, milk and cereal (that he loves to have as a snack at night) and a big scavenger hunt by the Bad Birthday Club, etc.  We love our daddy-O.

I couldn't lose this recipe, so here it is:

New York Cheesecake (adapted from the above recipe and comments)
1 2/3 c. graham crackers, crushed
1/2 c. melted butter
Stir together and press into 10" spring form pan about 1/2 way up the sides. Put in freezer to hang out.

5 (8oz) pkg cream cheese softened*
5 eggs
2 egg yolks (or just 1 more egg)
1 2/3 c. white sugar
1/8 c. all purpose flour
1/4 c. heavy whipping cream

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). 

In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, eggs and egg yolks; mix until smooth. Add the remaining 1 2/3 cups white sugar, the flour and the heavy cream. Blend until smooth. Pour batter into prepared pan with graham cracker crust.  Filling will go slightly above the top of the pan but it won't spill over!  It's supposed to be tall.

Bake at 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) for 10 minutes, then turn oven temperature down to 200 degrees F (100 degrees C) and continue baking for 3 hours.  Turn oven off and let sit for 2+ hours until it comes to room temperature, then refrigerate 48 hours.  To remove from pan and slice, use a clean, hot, dry knife.  To do that, run it under hot water, and quickly wipe dry, and slice.  Do it again each time.  We don't care about pretty so we didn't do that!

This cheesecake rivals anything you will ever buy in a bakery or a fine restaurant!  It is unbelievably smooth and creamy though it is tall and dense.  I would like to figure out how to put a thin sour cream layer over the very top, but it's not necessary.
*Use Philadelphia or good quality cream cheese.  I tried this with the generic store brand and it tasted completely different!


Mary Karlee Mullen said...

that cheesecake looks amazing! You are so patient to make it two days ahead.

I'm also going to send the riddle to Ryan and see if he can figure it out. :)

Happy Birthday Pat!

Christy said...

Happy Birthday Pat!! That cheese cake looks awesome!