Sustainable farming in Westchester? The question will be answered at the 9th “Book & The Cook Series” at Plates restaurant in Larchmont on Thursday December 3rd 2009. The series combines a “book talk” from the authors with dinner by Chef Matthew Karp inspired by the recipes and inclination of the book.
On this evening, Plates will debut Over The Rainbeau: Living the dream of sustainable farming, the recipe book and lifestyle memoir of cheesemaker/farmer Lisa Schwartz who writes of her journey from tending a pair of goats to building a multifaceted, sustainable farm, Rainbeau Ridge, in Bedford, NY. Written in collaboration with food writer Judith Hausman, a regular contributor to Westchester Magazine, and Ms. Schwartz’s sister, photographer Karen Sabath, the book combines original chef-created recipes, aspirational how-tos and captivating photographs.
Chef Karp has known Ms. Schwartz for several years. “Shortly after we opened Plates in 2004, I heard there was a farm in Bedford making cheeses, I had to go see for myself. We took the kids there on a Monday day off and met Lisa, her animals and experienced her suburban farm first hand,” he recalled. Since then, Chef Karp has used her cheeses at Plates, has taught cooking classes in her teaching kitchen in “the barn,” and now welcomes her to his restaurant. For the Book and the Cook event, he will feature her Double Decker Pumpkin Cheesecake for dessert (recipe below).
The evening will include four courses including the award winning cheeses of Rainbeau Ridge Farm, and is $55 per person. Optional biodynamic/organic wine pairing, tax and gratuity are extra. There will be time for Q&A and dialogue with the authors, and books will be available for purchase and signing for a 20% discount. The evening begins at 7 pm. For additional information and reservations:
Double Decker Pumpkin Cheesecake
For the crust:
- 1 cup ginger snaps finely ground (about 20 cookies or 6 ounces)
- 3 Tbsp butter
- 2 Tbsp sugar
For the filling:
- 24 ounces fresh goat cheese
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 Tbsp flour
- 3 large eggs
- 1 Tbsp vanilla
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp allspice
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Prepare 9″ spring form pan, buttering sides and bottom. (You can line the bottom with parchment paper but butter that too.)
For the crust:
- Crush ginger snaps in food processor until finely ground.
- Add sugar and process again.
- Add butter and process until just moistened.
- Press mixture to form crust into bottom of prepared pan and come up slightly on the sides with any excess.
For the filling:
- In mixer, beat together cheese, sugar and flour until smooth.
- Add eggs, one at a time.
- Add vanilla, beating on low until all ingredients are thoroughly incorporated.
- Measure two generous cups and put this ‘creamed’ goat cheese batter aside.
- In remaining batter, add final spices and sugar and pumpkin puree. Beat until smooth.
Spread the pumpkin batter gently onto the crust in the spring form pan.
Top with plain ‘creamed cheese’ batter.
In shallow roasting pan, set filled spring form pan and fill with hot water to 1″ up the sides.
Bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes until top is golden in color.
Open oven and turn off temperature and leave set one hour.
Remove pan from oven and leave on rack for 1 hour before refrigerating at least 4-6 hours.
Bring to room temperature before serving.
Note: As an alternative to the two layers approach-you can put 2/3 of pumpkin batter in pan and dollop cheese batter in random places. Top with remaining pumpkin batter and swirl through all layers with a sharp knife.
Yields 10-12 servings