We all have those times in life when everything comes together to generate one of those perfect moments. When you wish time could just stop so that you could enjoy it a little longer and not have it slip away. I have lots of those moments or actually more like ‘times’ in my life when my children were little and so many more as they were growing up, when I caught myself smiling when no one was around because I just felt grounded and settled and peaceful with the world around me. I think that’s what Buddhists would call being in the Zen. I imagine that Buddhists feel that far more often than most, I wonder if that’s not just a matter of “being present in the moment” and I’ve often thought about studying Buddhism in more depth so that maybe I could find that centered’ness’ and have it become a more prevalent part of my life.
This morning, as many this time of year seems to generate those kinds of moments. When I wake up on a weekend morning, the sun is shining though the window onto the head of my bed, the squirrels and birds are squeaking and chirping, the breeze is cool enough to tell you that is going to be a beautiful day outside but not cold enough anymore to keep you under the covers… just… perfect. Mornings like today I stay in bed for a bit, long enough to not feel guilty about the time I’m letting slip away and long enough to really feel the day opening up.
I try not to run through the list in my head, laundry, cleaning, gardening and all the things that distract me from the peacefulness. I try to simply live in the moment. Inevitably, I get up and start moving ahead, typically only getting half of what I want to finish actually done. 🙂 This is one of those kinds of days, cleaning up the basement from our sewer disaster, doing laundry, helping my youngest and the last child at home to pack for her move out on her own next weekend, thinking of the things I’d like to bake or cook and the books I’d like to read and slowly move forward in my day allowing some of the less urgent things slip off my list of things to do, hoping I’ll maybe catch up on them next weekend. But this is the last weekend with my daughter who is leaving home and so there are other things to get done… Sweetie… I hope you enjoy lots of ‘moments’ between the duties and details that life places on you now that you’ll be on your own! Moments when you stop and take stock and find pride and gratitude in all that you have and will accomplish.
Clearly this is a weekend with little blog cooking and photography… there are more pressing matters at hand that steal my time, and so I am posting the second of the brownies that I made earlier in the week, the ones that weren’t posted at that time but were eaten very quickly. They are delicious. They have definitely turned me into a brownie fan… I wasn’t one before.
I hope you enjoy them … and your moments whichever are the ones that make you stop and take stock of all the goodness in your life.
Sour Cherry Cheesecake Brownies (Slightly adapted from Skanios Mintys)
- 250 grams butter
- 5 eggs
- 300 grams white sugar
- 70 grams high quality cocoa powder
- 120 grams all-purpose flour
- A pinch of salt (unless you’re using salted butter)
Melt the butter and leave to cool for a bit, I put mine in the microwave for about 1 minute on high. Mix sugar and eggs for about 5 mins, until it becomes pale and fluffy. Slowly pour in the melted butter while still mixing. Then gently mix in the flour, cocoa powder and salt until incorporated, but don‘t over mix. Pour into a 9×13 pan with parchment paper coated in spray.
- 300 grams cream cheese (room temperature)
- 150 grams white sugar
- 1 large egg
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 50 ml milk
- 250 grams cups Berries of choice – I used sour cherries
Mix all ingredients (except fruit) in a bowl or stand mixer with the paddle attachment and mix until smooth. It should be a nice pudding like consistency. Then gently stir in the berries careful not to break them apart and layer over the chocolate brownie base. Using a knife swirl it around so that you can see the chocolate layer peeking though. Just don’t over mix because then you won’t get the cheesecakey chunks… which by the way… are luscious! You can also reserve a few berries and lay them on top of the mixture, pressing them down gently before baking.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 40 – 45 minutes and let cool before attempting to lift out of the pan. Slice and enjoy!