Monday, May 9, 2011

My Easter Break

The Easter break- my first ever uni break- has come and gone in a flash. (and life after break has been so busy that I haven't had a chance to blog about it until now). To be honest, I was never really looking forward toward this break, knowing that many things were due in after it. Nevertheless, I managed to have some fun and take a break from the boring (but terribly time-consuming) uni work I've been stuck with for quite a while.


Easter Sunday was spent on a little trip to Bilpin for some apple picking- something we do almost every year, though this was the first time we'd come during such a busy period. There wasn't too much variety- mainly pink lady apples, which, I admit, I'd never particularly liked. However, fresh off the tree, they had an amazing texture a deliciously fresh apple taste (I have since been addicted to these apples!).


We also organised a surprise party for our friend, which didn't end up being too much of a surprise, but we all had fun- which is what really matters. We spent a few hours making this rainbow cake, and ran into a few hiccups along the way. But it was well worth the effort- the cake looked amazing! Though it tasted....not quite as spectacular as it looked ;)

We also spent an afternoon at home playing with my new toy- an egg waffle mould that I'd been planning to use since the beginning of the year. It wasn't as hard as I'd imagined it to be, and we managed to produce some pretty great tasting egg waffles, though we have still quite a while to go to master the techniques- I shall get back to you with a proper post on these when I get more practice :)

And lastly, I made this beautiful blueberry cheesecake which I'd actually been meaning to make ever since my first attempt at a blueberry cheesecake. Whilst I was very pleased with the result (surprised, even), and had no problem eating it all up, I wanted to recreate the first cheesecake I have memory of eating, and which made me start liking cheesecakes.

This was the blueberry cheesecake from the Cheesecake Shop- a simple baked cheesecake with a blueberry topping, but with a texture so light, it was only a little firmer than non-baked cheesecakes. To create this light texture, I decided to use this recipe, which incorporated whipped egg whites to give it a lighter texture. The cake was very easy to make, and didn't take me too long to whip up. For the topping, I improvised by heating a punnet of blueberries with a tablespoon of sugar until the consistency looked topping-like.

For the base, I decided to use ginger nuts instead of Marie biscuits, because I wanted a crunchier base. Unfortunately, they were a pain to crush because they were so hard- maybe I should have just used a blender to crush them :) And when I finally crushed them and made my base, I accidentally spilled water onto it :( I tried baking it to evaporate the water off but the base didn't end up tasting that great.....

BUT the cheesecake itself was delicious- I'm starting to think that cheesecake always tastes good, no matter how you make it :) As anticipated, the texture was light, though it was slightly different to the texture of the cheesecake I was trying to recreate. The taste was also slightly different, I think, because there was less sugar in this one, though I found the sweetness to be just right for my tastes. Overall, I was very happy with this cheesecake and I would make it again, although I think I actually like firmer baked cheesecakes better!

Blueberry Baked Cheesecake
taken from Anncoo's Journal

Base - 8" cake tin, grease tin all over and line
100g Marie biscuits, crushed
100g Butter - melted


Mix all the above ingredients and press onto the cake tin base.

Filling:
250g Cream cheese (keep at room temperature before use)
65g Whipping cream

60g Sugar (half portion to egg yolks and egg whites)

3 Egg yolks

3 Egg whites

1/2tsp Vanilla flavour
1/2tsp Lemon juice or lemon oil


1. Cream the cheese and half portion of sugar together and slowly add in the whipping cream together with vanilla flavour and lemon juice. Beat the mixture till light and fluffy and smooth at medium speed. Scrape bowl and egg yolks one at a time until all combined and transfer to a larger bowl.
2. Whisk egg whites and balance sugar till peak form. Use spatula to fold egg whites to cheese mixture. Mixture must be light and not watery.
3. Pour cheese mixture into prepared cake tin.
4. Steam bake at 160C for about 1 hour and leave to cool.
5. Spread blueberry topping (I made my own) onto the cheese cake.
6. Put Blueberry cheese cake in fridge for at least one hour before serving.

17 comments:

grub said...

THE RAINBOW CAKE LOOKS SOOOOOOOOO AMAZING!!!!!!! must've took AGESSSSS!!! how fast was uni break huh!! i went on camp on the last three days of break, so it was quite stressful and tiring when i got back. well, at least winter break is something to look forward to AFTER the dreadful exams!

looking forward to the gai dai zai post! and your cheesecake is so nom-able :D

Steph said...

:D the cheese cake looks just like the one we have at my gloria jeans! and i bet it taste just as great if not better :D:D

jEaN said...

Ummmm... I'm hungry:) They look really good and the blueberry cheesecake is mouth-watering:D

CaThY said...

Wow, your bakes made me drool ! The egg mould is cute ;)

lynne said...

Aw, that's too bad the rainbow cake wasn't as good as it looked, but it did look amazing! Yum! Blueberry cheesecake sounds delicious :)

Vivienne said...

wow so good that you got to bake so much with your friends...always fun having ppl to help out and clean up and eat up :D

yeah...its hard to come across a really bad cheesecake...cream cheese just tastes too good!

enjoy your break while it lasts von!

teenagefoodie said...

you must post a recipe/method for the egg waffles! I miss them soo much and I can't find any here =[
Where did you get ur mould from?

Juliana said...

Cheesecake and blueberries, perfect combo, looks creamy! All the pictures look great...like the colorful cake :-) Hope you are having a great week!

Von said...

Hi grub! Yeah..the cake pretty much took 3 hours to make (including cooling time), though that was only because we rushed it, which is why the cake didn't actually taste that great ;) I don't even know where my uni break went :( How long was yours? Ours was one week- a lot of other unis had two week breaks :( I know- the only thing motivating me now is knowing that in a couple of weeks time, the first semester will be over!

Hi Steph! Really? :O I rarely go to gloria jeans....I dunno if it would taste better though ;) But thanks! :D

Hi Jean! Thankyou! :D

Hi Lynne! Thanks! :D Oh well- I don't think anyone really cared how it tasted by the time we finished making it...haha

Hi Vivienne! Yeah- it's really different to baking by myself or with my family... :D My break actually finished two weeks ago now.. :( *sigh*

Hi teenagefodie! Ngaww....it might take me a while to post it though- coz I don't see myself having the time to make some anytime soon :( I've found like...two places in Sydney which sell them (though they are ridiculously expensive), though I've never tried them...I got my mould from Hong Kong :D It was so heavy....and we only got the small sized one!

Hi Juliana! I agree- they taste so good together! Thanks! I'm having an okay week.....hope you're having a great week too!

mademoiselle délicieuse said...

My first cheesecake was a frozen Sara Lee but then I got converted to baked ones and have never looked back since! The dense but fluffy texture is what does it for me.

Looking forward to seeing your egg waffles post too!

Dumpling Girl said...

Yum blueberry cheesecake. I remember those uni breaks went so quick, but now that uni is over for me, I wish I really miss those breaks, lol.

Shirley @ Kokken69 said...

Glad that you had fun over Easter. I was stuck in business travels on good Friday so I miss the holiday altogether. Gave always wanted to pick some fruits at an orchard...thus I envy that you get to do it every year :) That rainbow cake looks awesome. Looks like blueberry is becoming synonymous with cheesecake :) I am sure it brought back good memories for you.

muppy said...

I love pink ladys!!! my dad just brought me a bag from Orange and they are incredible,
and those waffles look really yummy :)

Maria said...

I was in Bilpin at Easter too! The apples were delicious and so is this cheesecake, I love blueberries!

grace said...

while the rainbow cake is most impressive, i can't help but be entirely smitten with your cheesecake. blueberries get me every time. :)

MaryMoh said...

Great that you had a lovely break. I love your rainbow cake. Looks very beautiful. Love your blueberry cake too. I want a big slice :D

Esther said...

Oh no, I forgot to comment! Your cake looks amazing!! So many different colors. The sprinkles are soo cute. :) Your blueberry cheesecake looks like it's straight out of a bakery. Good luck with your uni work! You must be very, very busy. Are exams coming up soon?

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