sometimes in the spring i forget that i'm in practically canada because right now it's mid-70s and sunny and there are outdoor vintage tractor auctions about town, but then the sun sticks around shining bright like a diamond until quarter to ten and i'm reminded how essentially arctic we are. pros: i can photograph with natural light literally until 8:30pm, so i feel like i can get so much done. cons: i can photograph in natural light literally until 8:30pm, so i just procrastinate the day away.
luckily my non-urgency to get home and photograph this weekend led to a lovely bit of time spent in fargo! we had pizza night at rhombus and then crashed at eggsister's spankin new apartment, which is so exquisitely decorated with vintage furniture and homemade blankets. i forgot what life pre-ikea looked like, but life in fargo is still exactly that, and it has so much personality. in the morning we ate bagels at the new great bagel place, visited our favorite coffee spot, and then bopped into unglued and zandbroz and fowler's before going back to the bagel place for some brisket for the road home. it was like we were regular city folk!
now i'm just noodling around, doing some laundry, and trying to get my ducks in a row re: book stuff! did you see the cover?? i'm so excited about it. now we're determining what the spine and back cover will look like.
anywho, shavuot is coming right up this weekend and on shavuot it's customary to eat dairy. cheesecakes and blintzes are traditional, but this year i took a route that requires a little less maintenance and went for a no-bake cheesecake parfait jar thing and topped it with an easy peasy roasted rhubarb that's inspired by claire. the thing is practically idiot proof and it can be made a day in advance. i used a biscoff cookie crust, but feel free to use a graham cracker crust, an oreo crust, a pretzel crust, or, i don't care, a gummy bear crust (?). (with more gumption i would have used the tahini oreos that have been in my fridge for months and that should have spoiled by now and they seemed ok but i was still chicken.) the filling here is just a basic fluffy cream cheese/whipped cream delight that's got some added tang by way of yogurt. it comes together in minutes and it's not too sweet. the rhubarb is though! because rhubarb is so sour, it needs an ass ton of sugar. oh and if you need some rhubarb, come over, my patch is bursting with glee. that's it. happy shavuot!
whipped yogurt cheesecake with roasted rhubarb
24 biscoff cookies or similar
3 tb coconut oil
1/2 c cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 c powdered sugar
1/8 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
1/2 tsp rosewater, optional
1/2 c plain full fat greek yogurt or labneh
1/2 c heavy cream
1 lb rhubarb, chopped into 1” pieces
1/2 c sugar
zest of 1 lemon
1 tb vanilla bean paste or extract
1/8 tsp salt
To make the crust:
Blend the cookies in a food processor until finely ground. Add the coconut oil (it doesn’t need to be melted) and pulse until the mixture clumps together. Distribute the mixture between serving glasses and then use a muddler or the back of a spoon to pack it down firmly. Set aside while you make the filling.
To make the cheesecake:
In a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat together the cream cheese and powdered sugar on high until smooth. Beat in the salt, vanilla, and rosewater (if using), and then add the yogurt or labneh. Beat on high for a few seconds until combined and smooth. Add the heavy cream and beat on high for about another minute until the mixture holds stiff peaks. Distribute the mixture between your serving glasses and then chill for an hour or overnight.
To roast the rhubarb:
Preheat the oven to 325ºf. Spread the rhubarb out on a rimmed baking sheet and top it with the sugar, lemon zest, vanilla bean paste or extract, and salt and cover with foil. Roast for 15 minutes covered, and then roast for another 15 minutes uncovered. Let cool. (Store this in an airtight container in the refrigerator overnight if making this the day before.) And then spoon on top of the cheesecake directly before serving. Enjoy!