Had the pleasure of seeing Dan Kitson again at the Hob (Forest Hill) on Thursday night. He's currently previewing his Edinburgh show "66A Church Road - A Lament Made Of Memories And Kept In Suitcases" which even in this raw state, a direct quote from the man himself "It's a bit like taking someone who loves meringues to see an egg being laid" I can highly recommend to anyone who has ever had a home, a heart or a memory.
I'm not a critic and this most certainly is not a review. It's more a fan letter destined never to be sent. A declaration of my affection for a man, a voice, a life lived and shared, all be it edited & played for laughs sometimes laced with a feeling of loss or sorrow but due to his impeccable inner optic, always in just the right measure.
Taking the essence of a moment & distilling it to perfection our laughter is the vapour which produces the middle cut. No feints or foreshot will remain once these previews are completed which, though not a bad thing, fills me with just a smidgen of regret.
Talking to Sally who caught the Saturday afternoon show it seems that in just a couple of days much change is afoot. What am I missing? What did she miss? Ha, I guess the answer is we'll never know and it's best just to shrug and smile and say we'll book tickets for the London debut and settle in to the snug for another round, my shout!
When it comes to comedy genius his cup runnith over, when it comes to thought provoking statements the man's a walking billboard "You know better so do better" I will Daniel, I will.
Last orders & analogies over and just a simple message remains I *heart* Dan Kitson and you will too!
And on a lighter and creamier note may I introduce you to the object of my dietary downfall this week:
As decadent as a night out in studio 54 & as rich as it's fabulous clientele!
As promised here's the recipe. 1st off I'd just like to say that this is cobbled together from around 3 different recipes and it's really just a matter of taste so don't be afraid to experiment and make it into something you love.
FOR THE BASE
150ml butter melted, plus a little extra to grease the tin
280g digestive biscuits, made into fine crumbs
2 tbsp golden caster sugar
FOR THE CHEESECAKE FILLING
3 x 300g pack full fat soft cheese (Philadelphia is good)
250g golden caster sugar
3 tbsp plain flour
3 tbs vanilla extract
3 large eggs plus 1 yolk
284ml carton soured cream
A pinch of salt
FOR THE SOURED CREAM TOPPING (optional)
142ml carton soured cream
1 tbsp golden caster sugar
Preperation and cooking times Takes 1 hr 30 plus 2 hours cooling + chilling. To be cooked in the middle of the oven. Preheat to fan 160C/conventional 180C/gas 4. Line the base of a 20cm springform cake tin with parchment paper.
1) For the base melt the butter in a medium pan and stir in the biscuit crumbs. Add the sugar and continue to stir until the mixture is evenly moistened. Press the mixture into the bottom of the tin and bake for 10 minutes. Leave in the tin and cool on a wire rack while preparing the filling.
2) For the filling, increase the oven temperature to fan 200C/conventional 240C/gas 9. In a table top mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, I used a kitchen aid, beat the soft cheese at medium-low speed until creamy, which takes about 2 minutes. With the mixer on low, gradually add the sugar, then the flour and the pinch of salt, scraping down the sides of the bowl and the paddle when necessary to ensure an even mix.
3) Swap the paddle attachment for the whisk and add the vanilla. Separate the whites from the yolks and whisk both separately. Slowly add the yolks to the mixture then fold in the whites.
4) Stir the 284ml carton of soured cream until smooth, then measure 200ml/7fl oz (just over 3⁄4 of the carton, reserve the rest) and add to the mixture. Whisk to blend on a low speed but don't over-beat. The batter should be smooth, light and somewhat airy.
5) Add the blueberries. Now I was a little nervous and only added a handful but could easily have used more, again, whatever you fancy but don't go too mad! Another alternative it to use a coolie for drizzling over the top once chilled, as I said before, the choice is yours.
6) Brush the sides of the springform tin with melted butter and place on a baking sheet. Pour the filling on top of the base - if there are any lumps sink them using a knife - the top should be as smooth as possible.
7) Bake for 10 minutes then reduce your oven temperature to fan 90C/conventional 110C/gas 1⁄4 and bake for a further 25 minutes more. If you gently shake the tin, the filling should have a slight wobble. Turn off the oven and open the oven door for a cheesecake that's creamy in the centre, that's what I did, or leave it closed if you prefer a drier texture. Leave to cool in the oven for 2 hours. The cheesecake may get a slight crack on top as it cools.
8) Combine the reserved soured cream with the 142ml carton and the sugar for the topping. Spread over the cheesecake right to the edges. Cover loosely with foil and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight. I opted for no topping as Pete was a bit sceptical and it was still delicious.
9) Run a round-bladed knife around the sides of the tin to loosen any stuck edges. Unlock the side, slide the cheesecake off the bottom of the tin onto a plate, then slide the parchment paper out from underneath.
Mixing the ingredients:
The way you blend the ingredients is crucial: under-beating can lead to a lumpy mixture, over-beating can whip in too much air. This can result in uneven cooking, bubbles, and cracking.
Keep everything at room temperature To avoid lumps and ensure even mixing without over-beating, it is essential to have the soft cheese at room temperature before starting. Ideally, let it come to room temperature in its pack for 2 hours. It also helps to have a tabletop mixer with a powerful motor. But if you don't have one, a hand-held mixer works fine apparently.
Enjoy & as always thanks for stopping by.