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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

“Fabulous Bakery Desserts, Pt. XXV: Cheesecake Seminar, Pt. IV—Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake—none Better!”

The Steve Miller Band’s twenty-third album, “Steve Miller Band’s Greatest Hits” came out in 1998, four years after the Box Set and didn’t do very well either, neither achieving Gold nor Platinum status. Apparently, a different record label, Polydor, bought the rights to the old catalog and gave it a go and didn’t do well.  I mean, how many different ‘greatest hits’ packages can a label issue without the material going stale? Sadly, this one is still around if anyone is interested.  If you are a collector, we urge you to take the handy link to Amazon.com, the world’s largest online retailer and buy it now! You won’t be disappointed! Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day.  


Here's the countdown to December 21, 2012: from today, we have 492 days to go until the End of Days, the End of Time, Armageddon, and the End of the Mayan Calendar!  Everybody, beware!


                                                   STINKBUG 2011


Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti

END Commentary 08-18-2011

Copyright © 2011 by MHB Productions

Word Count: 2,138.



Elemental News of the Day Commentary-Opinion-Sports-Foodservice for Thursday, August 18, 2011 by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti


 Fabulous Bakery Desserts, Pt. XXV: Cheesecake Seminar, Pt. IV—Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake—none Better!

Bakersfield, CA, 08-18-2011 Th:  Our cheesecake seminar will continue on today with one of my all-time favorites: Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake.  This is one that I will be making personally for Brian Carrick’s and Linda Payne’s wedding on October 31, 2011—Halloween—as one of their wedding cakes.  It’s going to be a gala affair held at the Noriega House in Bakersfield in Old Town Kern on Baker Street.  Friends and family are invited and it’s going to be fun and the reception is still in the planning stages.  Everything will be done in a fall-Halloween theme and everyone will be in costume, it’s going to be a wonderful event and we will all be there.  You will read about it in the newspaper and we will share photos of it on the blog. Halloween is such a lovely day for a wedding! It’s going to be lots of fun is all I can say.  The honorable Reverend Charles R. Cournyea will be doing the ceremony and the man has officiated at every type of wedding imaginable, from a Tom Sawyer-like affair on a raft in the midst of the Kern River to a biker wedding at the Unity Church in which everyone except the bride was dressed in full leather regalia.  She collapsed at the altar due to not having eaten that day in order to fit into her wedding gown.   

Anyhow, Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake is an exceptionally good one that all of us here at the Elemental News of the Day enjoy eating.  It’s a bit different than the other ones in that it doesn’t utilize any gelatin and relies on flour and eggs to thicken it.  This gives it a different texture and the flavor is phenomenally good, trust me.  Pumpkin is a good subject for baked goods, too, as I will mention at the end of the recipe.  Virtually any squash can be substituted for the pumpkin just as can either sweet potatoes or yams.  This is a good one whenever you have either one of those items leftover after the holidays, all you need to do is to rinse them of any sauce, puree them in the food processor, and add them to the mix.  Let’s do it:


Yield: one 9” cheesecake / Mis-en-place: 8-10 hours total time w/ everything ready to work with:

The Cheesecake:
Philadelphia-brand cheesecake

Brown sugar


Ground cinnamon
Ground nutmeg
Ground ginger
Ground cloves
Iodized salt
All-purpose flour
Large eggs
Canned or fresh-cooked pumpkin puree
Room temperature
Evaporated milk
Vanilla extract

Basic Graham Cracker Crust:
Graham cracker crumbs

Melted butter

Granulated sugar

Egg white

The Finish:
Heavy cream

Powdered sugar

Vanilla extract



1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready to work with.  Make the crust first by combining the crumbled and pulverized Graham cracker crumbs with the melted butter, sugar, and egg white in the bowl of an electric mixer equipped with a paddle attachment.  Mix into a crumbly blend of butter and crumbs.  Spray a 9” spring release bake pan with PAM or some such other food release spray and gently press the crumb mixture into first the bottom and then onto the sides.  Do it slowly and gently so that it adheres to the pan but take care to have sprayed it well with the PAM, first. Note: the purpose of the egg white is to stabilize the crust so that it will hold together better when the cake’s been baked.  Preheat standard oven to 400°F or a convection oven to 350°F.

2.      Next, combine the first THIRTEEN ingredients in the mixing bowl using the paddle attachment and beat on medium-high speed until well-blended and smooth.  Something you should do prior to doing this is to force the flour and spices through a fine-meshed sieve in order to break up any clumps.

3.      Scoop the cream cheese filling into the prepared crust and place on the middle oven rack to bake.  Keep an eye on it as you bake it and be sure to use an oven thermometer so as to keep it at the proper temperature.

4.      Bake for about an hour to an hour-and-a-quarter.  Check for doneness by noting the cheesecake to begin pulling away from the sides of the pan and for SMALL cracks to begin forming in the center of the cake—when you see this, check with a cake tester to make sure the center is almost completely dry.  The trick is to pull it out before it’s completely done so that it will finish in the pan and NOT in the oven.  If you leave it in the oven for too long, the cracks will appear quickly and will be deep.  You can cover this up by putting a topping on top but you can’t do anything about the dryness so be careful!

5.      Allow to cool on a cake rack for about 20 minutes and refrigerate for at least SIX hours.  Decorate with whipped cream and sprinkles. 

This is an excellent cheesecake for anytime of the year, not just Thanksgiving and/or Christmas.  Pumpkin is a much-under-utilized vegetable that makes some of the best rolls, breads, and cheesecakes so don’t be afraid to get that can of pumpkin down that you have leftover from last year’s holidays and get busy.  Instead of gelatin being the thickener in this cheesecake, we’re using flour and more eggs for a lighter, fluffier, finished product.

As I said yesterday, I have had a great time today and as always enjoy my opportunities to write for the Elemental News of the Day. We urge our readership to write to us and leave comments and if there are any of you, who would care to write an article for us, please get in touch via Magnolia Hilltop Brewers, P.O. Box 20669, Bakersfield, CA 93390-0669.  We obviously don’t pay anything but you will be given a full byline and that’s worth its weight in gold.  We want as many people who want to write to be able to do so and we believe that by presenting a forum for our fellow chefs, we are doing something for our beloved industry.  We love diversity and hope to add new and different authors to our pantheon of chefs, food and beverage directors, and culinary professionals.  Come on and join us, it’ll be fun!

Please remember to avoid doing business with AARC Technology in Bakersfield, CA.  These people don’t care about the small customer anymore but instead put all of their attentions onto their corporate customers. It’s sad to not remember why one has the success they do or from where it came.

Well, this is it for me, now it’s my turn to take some time off.  In the meantime, I insist that you that you learn as much as you can about yeast breads so that you will build your confidence.  I assure you over and over to never fear and read all the books on the subject that are available to you. There are many good books that can be purchased at Amazon.com which makes them reasonably priced so go over there and take a look. Buy a Steve Miller Band album and buy a cookbook! See you all tomorrow! Bye!    

Thank you!

V. Vicky Mazarotti

V. “Vicky” Mazarotti
ACF, CWC, CPC, International Association of Culinary Professionals IACP.

This is me as a young chef back in the 1970's when I was working at a hotel in San Francisco. I had the opportunity to work in many different parts of the country and worked my way up the culinary ladder to become a top chef. I am both a Certified Working Chef and a Certified Pastry Chef and am a member of the American Culinary Federation, the world's top authority on everything connected to cooking.


END Commentary for Thursday, August 18, 2011 by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti

Please note that everyone who writes for the Elemental News of the Day is their own person entitled to their own opinions, attitudes, and insanity so does not necessarily speak for all of us.  Thanks, Stinkbug.


This original essay was authored by the one-and-only Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti

Recipes created by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti on October 27, 1985 in Kona, HI.



“Stinky” of the Elemental News of the Day for the best of the news, politics, sports, foodservice, hotel and restaurant business, the end times, the end of days, the apocalypse, armageddon, and whatever else happens to pop up!




This is #1258, an 8” x 10" original oil painting by Beverly Carrick entitled, “Canyon Rapids." It's among her more beautiful works and is available for sale. You can see much more of her work at her Website, located at http://www.beverlycarrick.com or at Brian Carrick's Facebook page. At her Website, you will see not only more original oil paintings but also lithographs, giclees, prints, miniatures, photographs, and even her award-winning instructional video entitled, "Painting the Southwest with Beverly Carrick." Beverly has been painting for more than 60 years and is known around the world. Her work hangs in private and public galleries and is followed by a great many fans that circle the globe. We urge you to go to her Website NOW and view her work. It's possible that you will find something you like and will want to buy it for yourself, a friend, a loved one, or a neighbor! You will not be disappointed so please: do yourself a favor and go there IMMEDIATELY! Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day!

Web Pictures II

Magnolia Hilltop Brewers and What's Cookin' Productions Trademark of Quality and Symbol of Integrity. Copyright 08-17-2011, all rights reserved. No unauthorized reproductions of any of this material are permissible unless granted by written permission. Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day.

Chief Editor: Stinkbug.

Assistant Editor: Moses Scharbug III

Proofreader: Amos Mosby Caruthers.

Beer: Smokehouse.




V. Vicky Mazarotti, Fabulous Bakery Desserts, Classic Bakery Desserts, Classic Bakery Recipes, Desserts, Cheesecakes, Baked Cheesecakes, No-Bake Cheesecakes, Squash, the Steve Miller Band, Pumpkin,  


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