It starts with something in the air. A crispiness that announces that fall is slowly taking over the summer. I like opening the windows in the evening and letting the cool air in while curling up under my wool blanket. I smile when the tip of my nose gets a little cold when I go outside and embrace those scarfs that have stayed in my closet the past months.
Fall is my favourite season. It is incredibly romantic and it’s the time of year where I feel the most creative. It is also a time when I like to take long walks and sip red wine or tea while reading at night. The leaves are changing colours and the light seems different. It’s that time of year where I daydream more than I am awake, and a time to celebrate all of the food the earth is giving us.
It’s also a special time of year to gather with friends and family and share those last dinners or lunches outside before winter gets too close. Everyone picks their favourite and comfortable clothes, you make a fire (if you can) and everyone contributes to the meal – fall, for me, is a season of sharing.
Two weeks ago, Jacob turned 35. To celebrate, I invited his closest friends to a cottage in the country for a surprise party. From the middle of the afternoon to dawn, we celebrated with delicious food, plates of cheese and charcuterie, lots of bread, crisp wines and a simple dessert Jacob and I love: cheesecake. The real treat, however, was for everyone to be out of the city, at the same cottage, sharing some real quality time all together.
There is also something to be said about the quantity of food we can eat while on a small break. Snacking is part of the day, drinking comes easily, discussions go from politics to music, and everyone gets along under the trees. Some of our friends also decided to stay overnight so we made a gigantic breakfast to celebrate, making sure to prepare everything together and share all the ingredients we could find.
The recipe I am sharing today is a cheesecake I have been making for many years now: raspberry-swirl cheesecake. The crust is my own recipe, and the cheesecake is a recipe I got from Ricardo. I have tried many recipes in the past but have to say this one is my favourites. Make sure to do your cake a day in advance to give it some time in the fridge. The flavours are better after 24 hours.
We served the cake late at night and even if it is a rich way to end a day of snacking and eating, everyone took a slice and enjoyed it under the clear star lit sky.
In the midst of fall, I hope you will enjoy it as much as we all did. Happy Fall everyone.
For the crust:
You will need:
2\3 cup of flour
1 1\3 cups of oatmeal
1\2 cup of brown sugar
1\2 cup of butter, melted in the microwave
For the cheesecake, you will need:
2 cups of raspberries
1\4 cup of maple syrup or honey
3 packages of cream cheese, room temperature
3\4 cup of sugar
2 teaspoon of vanilla
1\2 cup of sour cream
For the crust:
In a bowl, mix all the ingredients of the crust together. Transfer in a 10-inch springform pan (removable bottom) and press firmly to make a tight crust. I also put some parchment paper in the bottom of my pan.
For the cake:
In a food processor, purée the raspberry with the maple syrup of honey. Taste as you go and add maple syrup if it needs more sweetness. Once ready, sieve the purée to get rid of the grains – this is now your coulis. Put aside.
In a clean bowl and with the mixer on low speed, beat the cream cheese until fluffy (about 2 minutes). Add the sugar and vanilla and beat well.
Add one egg at a time, beating well between each addition. Incorporate the sour cream and beat one last time.
Gently transfer half of the batter on top of the crust. Add 5 tablespoon of raspberry coulis on top, and then add the rest of the cheesecake batter. With a knife, make some swirl in the batter to spread the coulis inside the cake.
Place your spingform pan into a large piece of aluminum paper and make sure to wrap it tight around the pan. Transfer into a big baking dish and add boiling water (about half way). This will be a bain-mari (water bath) and will help prevent any cracks on your cake.
Put everything in the oven for 45 minutes at 350F. Once cooked, let the cake cool at room temperature and then refrigerate for many hours. Enjoy each piece with a spoonful of raspberry coulis, and enjoy!