Today for my featured Coffee Talk blogger. I have my good friend Kirsten from Comfortably Domestic. Kirsten and I are real life friends as well as Internet friends. We met for the first time when planed a trip to Mixed last year. She is super talented baker and home cook as well as Stay at Home Mom of FOUR ... BOYS, which she homeschools! Yikes. She is the mom I wish I was. Seriously. If only I had the patience for all of that.
Buttercream that I blogged about last spring. It truely is the only frosting you will ever need. This time around when it was time to choose a recipe to try from her blog, I didn't need to look far. I knew which one I wanted to try my hand at. Her Positively Perfect Cheesecake.
I loved this blog post because she goes into the science behind the cheesecake and went all Alton Brown on us. I love it. As for her cheesecake. Positively perfect indeed.
This cake takes a bit of patience. BUT if you follow the directions it works beautifully. It's not hard at all... just time wise painful. There are points where it is crucial you do not open the oven, and just trust that things are working inside. That's tough for this girl... her oven light is out so I can't see a thing! Then when the baking is all done and over.... you have a gorgeous cake calling your name. However you really need to let it sit in the refrigerator over night. PAINFUL. I cheated I cut into mine 3 hours in. It did not slice so pretty for my photos. However later on that night I sliced of the most flawless pieces ever... to bad the lighting sucked and I couldn't do a photo shoot redo!
In the end it all pays off because it is gorgeous, positively perfect cheesecake. To top Kirsten's perfect cheesecake I used my favorite cookies and cream cream cheese frosting. That paired with an Oreo crust, you really have a winner!
After making this cheesecake I sat down with Kirsten *virtually* and asked her some questions... I've been wanting to pick her brain on blogging, homeschooling life and mom stuff.
Everyone say hi to Kirsten!
Kirsten, I admire you so much. I really have no idea how you do what you do. As if you don't have enough on your plate with 4 boys and homeschooling.... why did you start blogging?
Ha! I get that a lot. I started my blog when Son #4 was just a newborn, Son #3 was not yet in school, and my oldest two were in school. At the time, the two that were home with me were both napping, so I blogged during naptime. Bear in mind that I took all my photos with my (then) Blackberry camera, and I had no idea that anyone other than a professional photographer could crop or edit their own photos. All I knew was that I am passionate about writing, food, and developing recipes. I’m a story teller, so I figured creating a blog would be a great avenue to share my passions. I seriously only expected my husband and maybe a handful of friends to read it. I’m glad I was wrong about that, because I’ve met the most wonderful people.
The homeschooling component only came into play about two years ago. I absolutely love it, but the constant/intense level of engagement definitely takes a away significant amount of time that used to be spent blogging. Combine that will extracurricular activities and volunteering, and I end up drowning in laundry and blogging late into the night.
I'm assuming that you have to be organized to run a house as busy as yours. Mom's like me (unorganized and running around like a crazy women 90% of the day) could use some tips on how to prioritize during the day. What is one tip you can lend us about organizing our days?
Organization is definitely the key to survival. I make a schedule, and I do my best to stick to it. I’d like to say that I’ve got our daily organization down to a science, but that’s simply not the case. If I don’t write it down, it fails will not happen; which is why I live by my (free!) Cozi family calendar, several idea notebooks, and a lot of neon sticky notes for extra important reminders. Most days, I consult my calendars several times so that I can stay on task or shift things around, as needed. Other days, I chuck the calendar and just cocoon at home with my family.
Growing boys eat a lot of food....I imagine you spend a good chunk of your day in the kitchen. Do you have any favorite time saving dinner ideas you can share with us?
Do they ever! I’m in so much trouble when they become teenagers. I joke that I spend 80% of my day in the kitchen just to keep up. Since I cook from scratch, my biggest time/sanity saver is menu planning. I set aside time every weekend to plan meals and snacks based on our upcoming schedule. I just about never make one meal at a time--I always make two of anything that can be frozen for a no-brainer meal on days when I just can’t think. My crockpot is totally my BFF. I’ll pull enough food for three dinners out of the freezer at a time so that it’ll be thawed and ready to cook during the week. I also keep us well stocked in homemade muffins, granola bars, and other healthy snacks to take on-the-go. Having good snacks around helps us resist the lure of convenience food when we’re running around town.
What is one trashy food you love to hate but hate that you love?
S’mores are my guilty pleasure. I keep an arsenal of graham crackers, marshmallows, and Hershey bars in the cupboard for s’mores emergencies. I microwave the marshmallow on half a graham cracker for like, 8 seconds, before topping it with half a Hershey bar and the other graham cracker half. On particularly harried days, I make two. They’re just perfect.
We have such a great community of food bloggers, can you name a few that are a must read so we can all go check them out?
Wow. That’s a tall order because the food blogging community is such a talented bunch. A few of my favorite reads are:
Brooks Walker’s blog, CakeWalkr. Brooks’ writing is so unbelievably poetic. His recipes are so beautiful and creative that I feel as if I’m lost in a favorite novel whenever I read his posts.
Rebecca Lindamood of Foodie with Family is my soul sista’! She’s an amazing talent, and a culinary genius. She’s also a homeschooling mama of five boys, with a love of all things nerdly and sci-fi. I’m not exaggerating when I say that her Make Ahead Mondays series saved our family from starvation during our first year of homeschooling.
I also like to check in with Jenna of Jenna’s Everything Blog. She regularly shares tempting recipes, punctuated with personal tidbits, and thought provoking prose.
Kirsten, Thank you so much for taking time out of your day for us!
Everyone be sure to check out Kirsten's blog Comfortably Domestic and make her Positively Perfect Cheesecake as well as follow her on Twitter and Facebook.