a case of the threesies

by Bella Rum

Christmas is coming! Christmas is coming! Christmas is coming! Is that redundant or repetitive? When three things break, one right behind the other, is that redundant or repetitive? When three things break three days before Christmas, is that redundant, repetitive or ridiculous?

We’ll have a houseful of adults and children two days from now. So what broke first?IMG_4883

First: The commode in the guest bath decided to empty its contents on the new floor, because…. I don’t know because WHY, it just did.

Problem? Nobody wants to work two days before you-know-what. That’s right. CHRISTMAS! (I realize I’m using italics everywhere, but I love the way they look. Don’t you love italics? And CAPS. Who can’t appreciate italicized CAPS. Yes, I was one of those kids, during a very short phase, who drew little circles instead of dots over her i’s, but never hearts.)

Second: The television, phone and Internet decided to take a Christmas vacation. I didn’t realize until the Internet protested when I tried to find a suggestion for the correct amount of herbs for an average, run-of-the-mill stuffing on Food Network. I make my idea of what my mother made, but I don’t have a recipe. I haven’t made it in a long time. A little refresher couldn’t hurt.

Third: I know this next one doesn’t technically fit the description “broken” but it’s equally distressing. I learned that H threw my 8-inch springform pan in the trash, the same 8-inch springform pan I use for my signature, super-duper cheesecake. OMG, Internet, I can hear you saying, “NO, noooo, he didn’t!” But yes, yes, he did. He did that. He said he did it to help me. I know. I couldn’t believe it either. He said he heard me complain about it leaking several times, and he wanted me to buy a new one. He knew I never would if I still had the old one. Then he promptly forgot to tell me or I forgot that he told me. And I think it was the latter. I’m pretty sure he told me.

What the heck happens to people when they get old. We probably have twenty years to go with this retirement thing.

My granddaughter loves that cake. LOVES it. She lives for Nona’s cheesecake (recipe to follow), she loves me more because I make that cake especially for her. When she attends my funeral, she will tell the SRO mourners how divine my cheesecake was, and how her Nona made it especially for her every birthday, every Easter and every Christmas… except that one Christmas of 2013. She doesn’t know why Nona didn’t make her cake that year, but she still gets a lump in her throat when she remembers how disappointed she was.

You see. Tell me you see.

So I spent the morning looking for an 8-inch springform pan. I went to Walmart, Target, Michael’s, and Bed Bath & Beyond. I looked high and low, and then I looked high and low again. The closest I could find was a 9-inch pan. I know I can find an 8-inch online, but I do not have time for that. If I’d known my pan had already started its five-million-year decomposition process in some landfill, I would have ordered a new one in time for Christmas.

To relieve your anxiety, I should tell you now that H still lives. I went all Zen on him. He felt bad enough. And I know it’s only a pan. It’s not like anyone lost an eye. So.

What’s the score now?

After a two-hour conversation between Comcast and H and a little fiddling and twiddling with this and that, the Internet is among the living once more. The toilet is still indisposed, but I’m not worried because I know H will fix it when he wakes from his nap. Thank goodness he can do that sort of thing.

But what about the springform pan, you ask?

When I got home from scouring the county, assured there were no 8-inch springform pans to be found in a fifty mile radius, I remembered another 8-inch springform pan I had years ago. I got on my hands and knees and got my head all up in the cabinets like I was looking for a place to hibernate, and there it was. Way back there, hidden underneath a bunch of other baking pans I never use, I spied a somewhat lopsided, very old, very thin, very cheap 8-inch springform pan. I used it many years ago before I got all fancy with one of those heavy-gauge steel construction, nonstick interior, dark exterior, neva-gonna-leak springform pans. The cake is sitting in the fridge as I write this, and it looks good. What a save.

One more thing, it was 82 degrees today. That’s one for the record books. It does not feel like Christmas, but Nona has her cheesecake.

Cheesecake 

Preheat Oven to 300º fifteen minutes before you put the cake in.

1/3 cup Graham Cracker Crumbs

2 Pounds Cream Cheese @ room temperature (or bring to room temp. in microwave)

1/2 cup heavy cream

4 eggs

1 3/4 cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Grease 8-inch springform pan with butter. Shake Graham Cracker crumbs around bottom and sides of pan to coat; dump out excess crumbs.

Put in food processor: cream cheese, half cup cream, four eggs, sugar, vanilla. Blend until smooth. Pour into pan.

Place 8-inch pan in a larger pan, and add hot water to the larger pan. Bake in water bath for two hours. Turn off heat and leave in oven for one more hour. Do not open oven door.  Remove and place on rack to cool for two more hours. Release from springform pan and invert on cake platter. Refrigerate at least four hours – better overnight.

Optional: Top with cherry pie filling or blueberry pie filling or serve on the side.

Source: Regis and Kathie Lee Live

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