Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching. This celebration of love and friendship dates far back to the third century, but the traditions many of us share today evolved around the 18th century when loved ones began presenting each other with flowers, candies and greeting cards known as “valentines.”
If you are looking for a way to treat your special someone, a homemade dessert can be a tasty acknowledgement. My favorite is cheesecake. This delicious dessert made with tangy cream cheese is a treat all by itself, but it can also be a platform for healthy and delicious toppings. Add a little protein and crunch with pecans, slivered almonds or crushed peanuts. For some extra sweetness and fiber, top with blueberries, strawberries or raspberries. And dark chocolate shavings will satisfy any craving and offer a healthy dose of antioxidants too. Set out a topping bar and invite friends and family over to make their own custom creation.
Dreamy Creamy Cheesecake
2 packages of graham crackers (crushed)
1 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp butter (melted)
Pour graham crackers into spring form pan. Add cinnamon and butter to moisten. Press to form crust. Bake at 375 for 10 minutes to set.
3 well beaten eggs
2 8oz packages of cream cheese (softened and creamed)
½ tsp salt
1Tbsp vanilla extract
1tsp almond extract
Beat until smooth
Blend 3 cup (24 ounces) sour cream into the above mixture.
Pour creamy mixture into previously prepared crust/pan.
Bake at 375 in water bath until set – approximately 45 minutes.
Chill 4-5 hours before serving.
Alisa L Hearl RN, BSN
Alisa Hearl is a Registered Nurse for the Sullivan County Department of Health in Tennessee where she serves as the School Health Services Supervisor. She is a King University graduate and will earn her Masters of Science in Nursing Education in May 2014 from East Tennessee State University. Alisa has worked in ER, OR, home health, and corrections but has found her passion working with the students of Sullivan County, TN. She has 5 children and 2 granddaughters that fill her life with joy and laughter.