From the dark underbelly filled with the subways, to the packed roads – people of absolutely any race that you can imagine are walking the streets. The city is a dichotomy of sorts – in the heart of such a high-energy lies an oasis called Central Park, a boat ride away lies the Ellis Island and a train ride away is New Jersey.
As I got off the flight, sat in the bus on a snowed in late February day, all I could think of was the milling crowds around. For some it can be disconcerting but for me it was comforting – there is something inexplicably calming about walking with the crowd, about being part of a pulsating multitude of people and being absorbed within the energy that surrounds you.
I spent a lot of my mornings walking in and around Time Square in the 10 days that I spent in NYC. I kept wishing for the quaint cafes that I had seen in some other cities and hoping that at least one such place would be there.
But NYC remains special because what I did realize as a process of that endless search was – don’t try to find a copy of another place in your current one. Don’t try to duplicate the uniqueness of another city into other one – else you will erode the uniqueness of where you are 🙂
So here is my healthy version of a typical classic from the city.
The Baked New York CheeseCake
A strong wholewheat-ragi chocolate-cane sugar base, that holds the city firm and the pristine and creamy filling free of colours or preservatives, free of maida/all purpose colour that is its soul – complex , multi layered , with just the right amount of sweetness – not the overwhelming sweetness , but the subtle tones thar play on your taste buds and senses.
My Recipe Here :
15 wholewheat ragi chocolate biscuits, made with cane sugar and crushed well.
2 tbsp melted butter
250 grams of homemade cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cups milk
1 cup cream
1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup organic barley flour
Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celsius. Grease a 9 inch spring-form pan.
Mix the crushed biscuits with melted butter. Press onto bottom of springform pan.
In another bowl, mix cream cheese with sugar until smooth. Beat in milk, and then add in the eggs one at a time, mixing just enough to incorporate. Add the cream, vanilla and barley flour. Mix until its a smooth liquid. Pour filling into prepared crust.
Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour or till the filling sets well. Let the cake cool off before removing it from the tin- this prevents cracking. Serve it cold or warm – whatever you prefer !