Due to a single misstep that resulted in shattering my left ankle, I have been staying with my parents during the week, because I am still — three weeks after the incident — not quite capable of performing simple chores or cooking for myself in any meaningful way. Luckily, my stepmother, Annette, is a very good cook, so I have not starved, and have in fact been enjoying eating someone else’s cooking.
I may not have inherited any of Annette’s genetics, but I did inherit her sandwich-making skills, as well as her knack for adding startlingly simple little extras that make all the difference. (Like putting a damp paper towel under your soup bowl to keep it from sliding around.) Annette is currently very into putting sweetened cream cheese on things, a little luxury that that costs very little but delivers a whole bunch of joy. On fruit, on banana bread, on a plain biscuit — sweetened cream cheese gives everything it touches a cheesecake vibe, and that’s a good vibe.
Making sweetened cream cheese is easy. Just let 230 g of full-fat cream cheese sit on the counter until it softens, then blend it with a 1/4-1/2 cup of powdered sugar, depending on your taste. You can splash in a little vanilla, almond extract, or liqueur if you feel like it. Mash it all up with a plastic spatula to get it ultra dense and smooth, or hit it with an immersion blender or hand mixer or to get it super fluffy and smooth. You’re now ready to add a little bit of sweet luxury to your life.
My personal favourite sweetened cream cheese application is dolloping it on top of a wine-poached pear, but a chilled canned pear is pretty good in a pinch. Breakfast carbs are another obvious vehicle, because who doesn’t want to eat deconstructed cheesecake for breakfast?
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