“Easter says you can put truth in a grave, but it won’t stay there.” Clarence W. Hall
I’ve been teaching for over ten years. Ironically, it is not my calling. It is, however, a means to put money in my bank account so I can buy cheese. And chocolate. And bacon. Let’s not forget the bacon.
Now, when teaching languages, I’ve repeatedly encountered the insurmountable obstacle that English makes no sense whatsoever, and German makes too much. If my words are not enough for thee, check out the poem “The Chaos”, by G. Nolst Trenité (1922). Then read “The Awful German Language”, by Mark Twain. Go ahead. Then come back, and read on.
Welcome to my everyday life. The excess of logic in German grammar and the absolute lack of it in English spelling regularly reduce my students to tears.
It’s so much fun to watch.
The greatest challenge for a language teacher is attempting to convey the many layers and fascinating nuances of the word. Some languages are easy. Some languages are not. Some are intuitive, like English, following no recognizable logic whatsoever. Others are but slight variations on a theme, close cousins, if you may, like all Romance languages. Differences notwithstanding, each language opens a door into an unknown world; centuries, no, millennia of history, psychology and anthropology unfolding before your eyes as you delve deeper into their secrets. A people’s deepest fears and yearnings are laid bare, just as bones cleared painstakingly of dirt in ancient burial sites. A civilisation’s language bears the unmistakable imprint of humanity, and when you begin to study them, you tap into an endless ocean of nuances, influenced by a myriad of seasons, woven together in an intrinsic filigree, an impossible dance, a virtuoso composition of colors you have yet to see. Through language, history comes alive.
And then there is German.
You see, European languages are, for the most part, fairly similar, due to geographically and demographically imposed proximity.
German is no exception, of course, but try telling that to my exasperated students. There are rules, and rules for the rules, rules for the exceptions to the rules, and a seemingly endless supply of vocabulary. It is a language for mathematicians, logical and predictable and complex as hell.
But for all their linguistic shortcomings, Germans are the indisputable kings of seasonal celebrations. Christmas and Easter are feasts to behold, riotous and joyous, belying the complexity of their world.
Let us celebrate that complexity with sweets. German Easter sweets, of course, slightly tweaked so they could have their place on this blog. Sweets, like languages, give fascinating insight into different worlds. Eat up, and be comforted – it is merely a study in anthropology.
One year ago on May the Cheese Be With You: Shepherd’s Pie
Other cream cheese sweets: Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake Bites, Carrot Cake, Chocolate Peanut Butter Muffins, Cheesecake Chocolate Mousse, Apple Cheese Danish, Raspberry White Chocolate Cheesecake, Old Style Cheesecake, Cream Cheese Pancakes, Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Bites, Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Buttercream, Green Velvet Cheesecake Cake with Marshmallow Cream Cheese Frosting
Cheesecake Filled Chocolate Easter Eggs
Inspired by the one-of-a-kind Raspberri Cupcakes
Servings: 6-8 eggs (depends on their size)
Prep time: 1 hour
You will need:
- 6-8 hollow chocolate eggs
- 150gr cream cheese
- 30gr, or 1/4 cup, powdered sugar
- a good squeeze of lemon juice
- vanilla extract, or vanilla sugar, to taste
- 125ml, or 1/2 cup, cream
- apricot or peach jam, or any yellow filling you like
Use a sharp knife to remove the top of the chocolate eggs. I went for the rustic, cracked look so I used a serrated knife. If you want smooth edges, hold your knife under warm water before cutting – it’ll make things easier and neater. Keep the chocolate eggs in the fridge while you prepare the cheesecake filling.
For the filling, beat the cream cheese with the sugar, lemon juice and vanilla until smooth, creamy and uniform – no unsightly lumps here, folks.
Now pour the cream into the container of an electric mixer and beat until stiff peaks form – we’re going for light whipped cream consistency here. If you feel like getting in a good workout before overloading on dessert, go on and hand whip it. But be prepared to sweat.
Carefully fold the whipped cream into the cheesecake until just combined.
Now spoon the filling into the chocolate eggs – you’ll need a spoon small enough to fit into the openings you cut earlier. Once filled to taste, chill the eggs in the fridge for 30 minutes.
When the cheesecake has firmed up nicely, use the same spoon you were using to fill the eggs, and spoon out the centre of the eggs, in order to create a little hollow in the middle of the filling. Fill the hole with the apricot or peach jam (I used a homemade combination of both). Chill for another half hour before serving.