Naju’s Guava Cheesecake

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 NAJU’S GUAVA CHEESECAKE

Topping

Melt together guava paste, 1/2 cup white wine, juice of 1/2 lemon. Set aside.

Crust

12 graham crackers

6 tbsp butter, melted

2 tbsp sugarguava cheesecake

pinch of coarse salt

Cheesecake

2 1/4 cups brown sugar

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup sour cream, room temperature

1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

5 large eggs, room temperature

– Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter sides of a 10-inch springform pan. Wrap exterior of pan (including base) in a double layer of foil.

– Process graham cracker in food processor until fine. Mix crust ingredients in a medium bowl. Pat mixture evenly into bottom of pan. Put in freezer for 15 minutes. Then bake crust for 15 minutes and set aside to cool while assembling the cheesecake.

– Beat cream cheese with paddle mixer for 3 minutes until fluffy.

– In a large bowl whisk together sugar and flour. Switch to mixer on low speed gradually adding flour/sugar to the cream cheese until smooth. Add sour cream and vanilla until smooth. Add eggs one at a time until just combined; do not overmix.

– Pour cheesecake filling into pan with crust. Place pan inside a large, shallow roasting pan. Carefully ladle boiling water into the roasting pan to reach halfway up the sides of the springorm pan.

– Bake 45 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Continue to bake about 30 minutes more until the sides are set and center still wobbly. Turn off oven; leave cake in the oven with the door ajar for 1 hour. Transfer to wire rack and cool completely.

– Spread guava topping all over the top of the cheesecake. Refrigerate, uncovered, at least 6 hours or overnight, before un-molding cake by running a knife around edges of the pan.

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Storage- Wine, Beer, Liquor

wine storage

 

Bottle Storage:

Wine

Store in a cool, dark place at 50-55 degrees, (do not fluctuate temperature, keep constant). Wine turns/oxidizes at 75 degrees. Store horizontally to keep the cork moist and prevent it from drying out. Keep still. Try not to move the wine bottles once stored. Dark green bottles are preferable.

Beer

Store upright to minimize oxidation between beer and bottle cap, and so unfiltered beer sediment stays on bottom. Like wine, it is recommended to find a cool, dark place with a temperature of 50-55 degrees. Most beers have an expiration date and are not recommended for aging, except for those heftier beers that are ripe for maturation, such as: vintage beers, barleywines, imperial stouts, Belgian strong ales, lambics, and old ales…

Liquor

Store upright. The theory is that lids are less reliable and can leak. A bottle of vodka will not go bad due to its alcohol content.

Christmas Port Braised Pot Roast w/Mashed Potatoes and Brussel Sprouts

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Here we have Six Grapes Port as well as a gifted custom-made batch of port, and started off Christmas Dinner with an appetizer of Tom de Savoie, some creamy Le Delice de Bourgogne, a dried fruit and nut brick from Bristol Farms, black & green Spanish olives and black pepper crackers.

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IMG_4179 copyChristmas Port Braised Pot Roast

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1 4lb Chuck Roast

2 tbsp Flour (for dipping)

2-3 tbsp Olive Oil

2 Onions + 1 Shallot, quartered

8 Carrots (or 6 for large), cut in 2-inch pieces

6 cloves Garlic, halved

1 cup Port

2 cups Mushroom Stock

4 sprigs Rosemary

Salt & Pepper to taste

Our recipe is adapted from Ree Drummond of The Pioneer Woman, but instead of wine we used port, in place of beef stock we used mushroom stock, we added shallots in with the onion, added garlic cloves, and used extra sprigs of rosemary in place of using thyme.

Start your roast by selecting a choice piece of grassfed Chuck Roast with plenty of marbling. The fat is where the flavor comes from and also texturizes the meat so that it is not so compressed.

IMG_0958 copy– Generously salt & pepper both sides of the chuck roast, and dip each side in flour.

– Heat olive oil on medium-high in a roasting pot. Add onions and brown each side. Remove Onions.

IMG_0952 copy– Add carrots to the same oil. Stir around till they start to brown, about 2 minutes. Remove.

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– Add more oil if needed, sear both sides and edges of the chuck roast. Remove.

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– Pour in the port and deglaze the bottom of the pot with a whisk.

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– Throw everything back in the pot, starting with the meat, then the onions and carrots, add garlic cloves and sprigs of rosemary on top. Pour in the mushroom stock. Cover. And put in the preheated oven for 4 hours at 275 degrees.

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*This is an oven recipe. Using a crock pot is also possible.

Make Mashed Potatoes to accompany the stew-like roast (russet potatoes, lots of butter, half & half, salt & pepper, and a dash of nutmeg):

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The Brussel Sprouts are simply roasted with olive oil, salt and pepper. The secret is to toss them thoroughly halfway through and add butter. Roast in same oven as the Roast for the last 40 minutes.

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IMG_4233 copyMerry Christmas!

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Swiss Raclette w/Kirsch

Had to share this great winter meal. The Swiss eat Raclette when it gets cold. Lesser known than Fondue, Raclette is a type of cheese which you melt in a special burner, in a special tray, using special scraping utensils. It is paired with either gold potatoes or red russet potatoes as well as pickled items of any sort, here it is: cornichons, cocktail onions, pickled mushrooms, pickled artichoke, and pickled garlic.

Serve with butter lettuce and französische salatsauce (a mayonnaise dijon dressing).

*Sliced baguette is not traditionally served with this dish.

pair with kirsch or white wine

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