Sunday, March 17, 2013

Tiramisu Cheesecake & My 1st Blogiversary!

Well, I made it! Butter Than Toast has been in existence for a full year today! In the past 12 months, I’ve written 72 posts including this one, which equates to an average of 6 posts each month. My original goal was just one post per week, so in that sense I’ve done a lot better than I originally thought I would.

It’s been quite the experience to figure out the world of blogging, my goodness! My learning curve when I first started was incredibly steep, and I’m very impressed with how intricate the blogging world can be. There is more to know than I ever thought possible! Not only do you have to work on your content, you have to learn how to present your work and how to promote the blog, as well. 

Streamlining the art of putting together a post has significantly changed for me over the last year. At first it would take me a few hours to figure out the lighting for the pictures and what exactly I wanted to say in the post. Now I am much more practiced, but focusing my voice for each post instead of having conversational verbal diarrhea is still a struggle. I either want to say way too many unrelated things that would make me sound like a freakazoid in the post, or I have trouble elaborating on the subject at hand. I suppose it depends on my mood or how much sleep and coffee I’ve had that day as well.

I am proud of myself in that I feel like I’ve continued to improve greatly on both my writing and photography skills. Of course, they’re still not the best and I’m still working on finding my writing personality and photography style, but they’re better than when I started which was the whole point of the blog anyway. I think it’s natural to think that good photography means having the camera lens a mere 2 centimeters away from the actual food, but with time and subsequent posts comes more understanding and appreciation of taking a few steps back before pressing the shutter button.

Without sounding like I’m running my mouth at an awards ceremony, I am truly grateful for my wonderful readers. Without y’all, I wouldn’t have as much motivation to stretch myself in each aspect of the blog, and I’m thankful to have others who share my love of cooking and photography. It’s been very comforting knowing that I’m not the first person to forget to add an ingredient or cover the dish with foil so the cheese doesn’t burn.

For the “birthday cake,” I didn’t want to make a traditional cake, since I usually prefer cheesecake anyway. It’s so rich and indulgent, as compared to usually dry and crumb-y birthday cakes whose frosting tastes like a spoonful of super sweet sugar. My friend and co-worker Amy made this cheesecake for all of us in the ICU when we were camped out at the hospital for one of the typhoons last year, and it was so good! I printed the recipe and immediately asked her for her adaptations.

I even adapted it just slightly further since I did not have any mascarpone (it’s hard to come by here in Okinawa), but I think it turned out just as good. The combination of lady fingers and Nilla wafers provided a light yet sturdy base for the custard and for the first time in the history of EVER my water bath didn’t leak and I didn’t end up with a Grand Canyon down the middle of the cake. It was a very exciting moment.

So help me celebrate 1 full year of blogging, and here’s to (hopefully) many more!

One Year Ago: Minestrone Soup

Tiramisu Cheesecake

Adapted from All Recipes

1 (3 ounce) package ladyfingers (about 24 ladyfingers)
2 cups vanilla wafers
3 tablespoons butter, melted
7 tablespoons Kahlua liqueur, divided
4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup sour cream
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 (1 ounce) square semisweet chocolate

Heat oven to 350°F. Fill a roasting pan (or pan large enough to accommodate the springform) with 2 inches with tap water, set inside oven while it heats. Wrap a springform pan with heavy duty foil, ensuring there is no way water can leak through at least halfway up the sides of the pan.

Place the ladyfingers and vanilla wafers in a food processor, pulse into fine crumbs. Mix the melted butter and 3 tablespoons of Kahlua into the crumbs. Press into an 8- or 9-inch springform pan.

In a large bowl, mix cream cheese, sour cream, and sugar until very smooth. Add the rest of the coffee liqueur (4 tablespoons), and mix well. Add the eggs and the flour; mix SLOWLY until just smooth. Batter might be as thick as pudding, which is ok. Do not overmix at this point. Pour batter into crust and spread evenly with a spoon or offset spatula.

Place the springform pan inside the water bath on middle rack of oven. Bake for 60 minutes, or until just set. Open oven door, and turn off the heat. Leave cake to cool in oven for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and let it finish cooling. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or overnight before attempting to remove the edge of the springform pan. Right before serving, grate the semi-sweet chocolate overtop.


  1. Happy blogiversary! :) and happy birthday to you! I'm so glad you started blogging, I love coming here to see what you've posted. Keep up the good work girlie.

    1. Thanks, Abbs! I love our small-world connection and that we've become friends despite being thousands of miles apart!

  2. Happy First Anniversary. You should be very proud of yourself

  3. Congrats!!! Happy Anniversary. I'm wishing you many many more. This cheesecake is fitting for the celebration. So pretty and I bet so tasty!

    1. Thanks so much! It is so good and I am now almost lamenting making it because there are too many leftovers! :)

  4. This Cheesecake looks like the perfect dessert for one of my BFFs! She loves both cheesecake and tiramisu. . . I'll have to give it a try for her birthday! Congrats on the year!!


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