Welcome Today I will give a little more background about the start of this blog and share a very decadent dessert recipe. If you are new to my blog, thanks for finding me in the vast land of internet information. If you are a returning reader, thank YOU for letting faith-family-food become a part of your life. Remember, if you like what you see, share with others, follow me on social media, and come back tomorrow. We are going to branch away from dessert recipes tomorrow, so stop by for a healthy dish!
Food for Thought I know not everyone believes in spiritual signs and divine intervention, but I do, and faith-family-food came to be because of that belief. If you read my post yesterday Making Spiritual Lemonade, you know about my little crisis earlier this year with my job. After making the decision to leave teaching, I was completely overwhelmed by the question “what next?” My entire career, education, and identity seemed to be wrapped up in being a teacher. I was overwhelmed and emotional, and had nothing left but prayer. I remember trying to get a shower in one morning and just standing there crying, and begging God to guide me, lead me, comfort me. It was true and heart-felt and real and raw, but I told God to take complete control, because I was in no condition to process and make decisions at this point. And then I relaxed. I stopped crying and my breathing returned to normal. I continued on with my morning routine, and then as if God were speaking directly to me, I felt the call to become a Christian blogger, and the title and layout was as clear as crystal in my mind. I knew it would be faith-family-food and I would try to use my love for cooking and baking to reach others and provide some words of comfort or contemplation. You just never know how God is going to use you to reach others, and who am I to argue?
I think faith, family, and food are the core areas of our life, the things we need most day to day. I know that I cannot get anywhere in my life without my faith, and that is the basis for which all other decisions are made. I can’t live without my family, either. They are the supporters and comforters here on earth, and the reason I keep on going when I feel there’s no other reason. And food? Well obviously we can’t live without it, but think about how much food is incorporated into our lives, and how food connects with the other two core areas I just talked about. Church potlucks and family reunions are not complete without a nice spread of yummy food. But these are only my thoughts on this. Let’s check our scripture readings for today and see what the Bible says about faith, family, and food.
Today’s Scriptures Obviously, there are hundreds of verses about faith in the Bible, and I certainly encourage you to find more, but here is a starting point today- Ephesians 2:8 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-” and 1 Corinthians 13:13 “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.” Wow! It sounds like faith is pretty important. In fact, faith is of such importance, that it was not negotiable to have it listed first in my site.
So what does the Bible say about family? Plenty, but again, here are a few verses to start your thinking- Proverbs 17:6 “Children’s children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children.” A little reminder about how wonderful grandchildren are to their grandparents, and although I’m probably not always the pride of my daughter, I can appreciate the closeness intended in these familial relationships in Proverbs. Proverbs 31: 28 says “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.” Ah…a verse that celebrates mom! We all have a lot of stories about how “mom” keeps the rest of the family going. But don’t forget dad! Luke 15: 31-32 is a great example of a father’s wisdom and leadership, ” ‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ ”
And that leaves us to talk about food. Some would question the spiritual nature of physical food, but actually there are quite a few references to food and eating in the Bible. Proverbs 31:15 says, “She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls.” The part that I underlined is clearly a reference for moms to cook for their families. Do not misunderstand me…you do not have to be a trained chef to give decent food to your kids and husband, but it is part of what makes up a “Proverbs 31 woman.” And I especially like the words in Isaiah 5:1-2. ” ‘Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy, and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare.” The interesting idea here is that we may partake not only in things we need for nourishment, like milk and bread, but also in things that are delicious and pleasurable such as wine. I also think that it is no mistake that God uses food for metaphorical references throughout the Bible. I think he knew that mankind would be able to have a greater understanding to these references because food is so important to us.
So before we move on to today’s delicious and pleasurable recipe, let me ask you if you have these three core priorities in your life. Does your faith come first and factor into all of your other decisions? Do you take responsibility and care for your family? And finally, do you like really yummy food? If so, hang out with me so we can make the wonderfully decadent chocolate-chocolate cheesecake-cake.
Today’s recipe It is no secret to anyone who knows me that I love food, and not just eating eat, but also preparing and serving it. There is something wonderful and satisfying about watching others enjoy the product of your labor and love. I often am asked to make certain recipes and dishes, but I am most known for my desserts. They seem to have the most “wow factor,” but also I love baking the most of any type of cooking. When I think about desserts, I am a chocolate girl, all the way! The options with chocolate are virtually endless! So when I think about my favorite chocolate dessert, it is hard for me to decide between cake and cheesecake. Today, we are going to combine them into one sinfully rich (Lord, forgive us for this yummy dessert we are about to receive) Chocolate-Chocolate Cheesecake-Cake. It will blow your mind, but be prepared to share, a little bit of this sweet concoction will go a long way!
Side Note: You need to begin preparing this dessert at least a day in advance because of the cheesecake will need to set before assembling the final cake.
- For the Cheesecake
- 1/4 cup butter
- 6 oz semi-sweet chocolate
- 2 packages cream cheese, softened
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 TBS cocoa powder
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup sour cream
- Spray a 9-inch spring-form pan with cooking spray and dust with a small amount of flour. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- Melt butter and chocolate in a small saucepan and cool completely.
- Beat cream cheese, sugar, cocoa, and vanilla until creamy. Slowly add eggs, beating until combined. Add chocolate and sour cream to cream cheese mixture (I fold these in by hand.) Pour into prepared pan.
- Bake 45 minutes. Turn oven off, but LEAVE cheesecake in oven for another hour with door closed. Cool cheesecake for 2 hours, then refrigerate another 8 hours without removing from pan. If you rush this step, you will likely have your cheesecake fall apart before putting the final cake put together. I know…it’s hard to be patient!
For the Cake
- 1 cup butter softened
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups flour
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- Spray 2 9-inch round cake pans with cooking spray and dust with flour. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Beat butter, sugar, and vanilla until creamy. Slowly add eggs, beating until combined.
- In another bowl, whisk together flour and next 4 ingredients. Alternate adding dry ingredients and buttermilk to the butter mixture. When all ingredients have combined, pour batter into prepared pans and bake 30 minutes. Cool completely.
- For the Frosting
- 1 1/2 cups butter
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 6 cups powdered sugar
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- Beat butter and cocoa powder together until creamy. Alternate adding powdered sugar and heavy cream to the mixture, combining until smooth and has the frosting texture you desire-I like thick and creamy!
- Assemble the cake
- Place one cake layer on plate and spread about 1/2 cup of the frosting on top. Remove cheesecake from spring-form pan, flipping over to place on top of first cake and frosting layer-you are going to want to make sure that cheesecake is all set and cool! Top another 1/2 cup of frosting on cheesecake, spreading to the edges. Add final cake layer and finish frosting top and sides with remaining frosting. Cake will need to be refrigerated because of the cheesecake layer, but the amount of frosting used does a good job of keeping the cake moist, even when refrigerated.
- When you take your first bite, it will knock your socks off…it is so sweet and rich, a small piece goes a long way.