It’s appropriate that my 10th post coincides with the new year: both mean the start of something fresh. This blog was given to me as an early Christmas present, and while I’ve always wanted a soapbox (opinionated bitch, here), I admit I was unsure about my resolve; my ability to be consistent rather than lazy (as evidenced by my last post). Russell suggested that I update every Monday, Wednesday and Friday so readers know when to expect something and so I can stay on top of my game. But, truth-be-told, I’ve quit a lot of life’s games. My company pays for a gym membership when sleep is my favorite sport. As a smoker, I’m a chronic quitter; my routine goes from on the wagon, to in the closet, to social, to chain, to tracheotomy candidate. I seem to love the idea of projects more than the followthrough.
But this blog has felt special from the starting line. I think the difference is passion. I might never be an enthusiastic nonsmoker, but my little slice of web space has been irresistible in its magic. I get to shove my opinion down your throat AND you thank me for the meal? Twofer! My hope is that the dedication it takes to fill your gullets with foodie goodness will be beneficial for my real life, as I want 2012 to be the year of getting crap done. For example, I want to lose ten pounds. The trick won’t be shedding the weight, but keeping it off while running a site that encourages not only happy fatness, but innovative happy fatness. Any other year, the challenge of working around two contradicting elements like that would’ve led to an early dismissal (again the means are more seductive than the ends). But I’ve been feeling a second wind lately, a need to do better. I think that might be the blog’s fault. I dunno, we’ll see how well I keep up with the triweekly structure, and how fat my ass doesn’t get.
Here’s to newness. Cheers.
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup granola, ground (I used Nature’s Path Organic Hemp Plus Granola)
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup ground walnuts
1 package cream cheese (8 oz)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1 tsp maple extract
1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp salt
Maple syrup (optional)
Preheat oven to 350˚. Butter 9×13 glass baking dish. Melt butter and cook until browned. Butter goes from browned to burned very quickly, so watch it. Remove from heat. Combine the remaining crust ingredients in a mixing bowl. Add the butter and mix well. Press evenly into bottom of prepared baking dish. Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden brown.
Meanwhile, add cream cheese and sugar to mixer and mix on low until creamed. Mix in eggs one at a time until blended. Add pumpkin, maple extract, pumpkin pie spice and salt. Mix until all ingredients are well blended. Pour batter over top of crust and bake for 25-30 minutes until center is set. Cool for 3-4 hours or overnight in fridge. Serve with a drizzle of maple syrup if desired. Trust me, it’s desired.
I cannot stress how important buttering the dish is. I looked at the buttery crust and thought, “eh no big deal.” I was wrong and had a helluva time getting the bars out. But, oh man, they were still cheesecakey goodness. It has come to my attention that I like to Frankenstein the letter Y onto the end of existing words to make new ones. In speaking, like cooking, that’s just how I roll, baby.