It's been a very, very long time since he's been on that diet (but he has a new medication that has dramatically taken down his seizures recently and now he laughs and smiles and smirks and howls with joy), but we kept having cheesecake and so I have perfected my own very easy cheesecake recipe.
I am going to share this recipe with you and I hope you will try it (if you like cheesecake). It's easy. Very easy. And very, very delicious (and it is traditional cheesecake -- not the whipped cream kind..though that kind is good too). I make a 9 x 13 pan of it because a typical pie pan just isn't big enough (so the recipe is for a 9 x 13 cake pan).
Jane's Traditional Cheesecake
2 1/2 sleeves of honey graham crackers (this is almost the entire box)
1 1/2 sticks of melted butter
4 packages of cream cheese very softened
3 large eggs
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Grease the pan.
3. Put melted butter in bowl.
4. Fine crumb the graham crackers. Add to butter. Mix thoroughly.
5. Add 1/4 cup sugar to the mix (but even do a little less than 1/4 -- maybe like a 1/6th of a cup). Mix it in.
6. Press this mixture into the greased pan going up on the sides, making it even.
7. Bake for about 10 or so minutes. Take out and let totally cool.
8. Turn off the oven (cause you won't be using it for a while. I often do the crust in the morning and then do the cake part in the afternoon).
Now for the cake body (after you know the crust is totally cooled -- don't shortcut this):
1. Put all the cream cheese into clean bowl. Mix thoroughly until very smooth.
2. Add eggs. Mix until totally mixed and smooth.
3. Add 3/4 cup sugar and the vanilla. Mix thoroughly.
4. Add to crust and smooth out.
5. Turn oven on to 300 degrees F.
6. Put in cake.
7. Now, here is the part you have to watch -- it takes a couple of hours to cook (or something like that). Just watch it periodically. Everyone's oven is different. When it becomes tan around the edges of the cake body it is done. You should also be able to touch top easily. You can stick a toothpick in it. It should come out clean.
8. Now for the patient part -- you have to let it refrigerate for at least 6 hours. Yes, 6 hours! You should make this the day before you need it. My husband tried it once when it had only been in the refrigerator for 3 hours and it just wasn't as good. So seriously, wait -- do it the day before.
And that is it! As I said it isn't hard, it just takes some time. Serve with canned cherry pie filling if you like (we do).
And for those who didn't see my Facebook post, I want to say this again. People see me and my husband caring for Hawken and think we are something special. We aren't any more special than anyone else (I was going to say we aren't special, but God has created each of us beautifully -- everything God makes is special and wonderful and lovely and so on). And some may think it has been a huge sacrifice for me to care for my son Hawken daily his whole life. I've changed diapers daily since August of 1995 when my oldest son was born (except for during the trips I made to Bulgaria and Russia). One thing I can say is that I am an expert diaper changer.
There have been periods in my life I've been discontent, but that wasn't my son's fault. That was me looking in wrong directions and trying to figure out things that God had under His control (and didn't need my help). Or, I'd condemn myself thinking if I was more industrious I could be making an income at home (and sometimes that has happened, but more often not). And there have been days I've needed a break (like all caregivers do -- if there is a caregiver in your family, maybe you can give that caregiver a break -- just a few hours would be nice). But all in all, it is a privilege to care for my son. He is a delight. And really (and I know most of you won't believe this) he has taken care of me all these years (along with my husband). I have a mental illness (which is controlled most of the time with lifestyle choices and medication) and there have been times life has been very dark and depressive. I've had depressions that have lasted for several months. And all the while Hawk and his constant, quiet presence has sat with me and reminded me I need to stay on this earth until God says it is time for me to go. When will that be? I have no idea. None of us do.
We humans (Americans especially I think) sometimes judge people on how they benefit society in a tangible, monetary or service way. Thinking our worth is in what we do. Thinking we only benefit our world by producing stuff or money or whatever. There's nothing wrong with any of that, but that isn't where our worth lies. Our worth lies in the fact that we were created by God to be in relationship with Him. He created us because He loves us and wants to hang out with us. He wants to be part of our lives. God shines through Hawken in a way He can't shine through anyone else. Hawk benefits our family and our church and everyone who sees him just because he is alive. Each one of us affects the people in our worlds. We are all so interconnected. Funny -- we at the same time think we need to "benefit" our society but then we also want to be fiercely independent thinking only in that is someone wholly human. I recently read a book where the author wrote that unless someone is sexually active that person isn't a whole person. Obviously, that isn't true. As Horton the elephant (one of my favorite characters) says, "A person's a person no matter how small."
We can't say a person has to be able to do "_________" in order to live a full human life. Think of a child who lives just a few hours. There's purpose for that child. That child was loved (and still is). Love is a purpose. To be loved is a purpose. We are all to be loved. Loving someone else changes us. I know loving Hawken has changed me. Loving each of my children has changed me. Loving my husband has changed me. Loving Jesus has changed me most of all (but in loving others we love Jesus too -- what we do to others we do to Jesus).
Oh boy -- I just meant to give you the recipe. If you are still reading I guess you wanted to keep reading. If you make the cheesecake don't eat the whole thing yourself. You'll get a stomachache (and always eat it cold).