“Measure with love”. A saying I learned from my son David’s student when I was invited to join them today for a cheesecake baking session. I was thrilled to join in, and delighted to watch high school students connect over a family recipe. The recipe is from South Africa, where the young woman’s parents, whose family recipe they used, are from. I don’t know if this is a commonly used recipe in the South African Jewish community but the special ingredient is vanilla pudding. I tasted it last week and it was delicious. Creamier and more pudding-like than the American versions that I typically make.
It’s been a tough week for many of us who have family and friends in Israel. It’s hard to think about the upcoming Chag, and trying to feel joyous when loved ones in Israel are worried about their safety. But when you grow up with survivors, you grow up with hope.
I hope peace comes to Israel soon. I hope you have a Chag Sameach. I hope you write down your family recipes because today I witnessed something special, a group of high school students all baking for Shavuot. And I hope that when you’re feeling unsure, or lacking confidence, that you remember to “measure with love”.
Special thank you to Jaden and her family for the wonderful recipe and that wonderful saying. I will never forget it.
400 grams cream cheese, room temperature (slightly less than 16 ounces)
1/2 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp flour
1 Tbsp vanilla pudding powder
Preheat oven to 275 degrees. In a bowl, combine cream cheese with whipping cream, and mix till smooth. Add sugar, flour and pudding, and stir till blended. In a small bowl beat eggs with vanilla. Add to cream cheese mixture and combine till you have a smooth batter. Pour into a crust of your choice and bake for 30-35 minutes or till center of cheesecake jiggles when slightly shaken.