Housewarming….the non-virtual one

So back towards the end of January I held my housewarming party. It was only females, most of who belonged to either a Newlywed group I hang out with or the Book Club Girls. I chose to go this route because my husband and I’s friends are most definitely eclectic and probably wouldn’t mesh all that well…plus, I’m not paying for alcohol for hockey players(we throw back..a lot).
I of course made more food than what the girls could eat, but my mother raised me to cook for 50…even when only 5 were coming. We had a couple vegetarians and so I kept that in mind when making the menu. The menu looked like this(keep in mind this was a 1:00pm party):

Cheese Platter with Grapes and Apples: Cabernet Soaked Cheddar, Balrina Hard Goat Cheese, Double Cream Brie, and Mango-Ginger Stilton
Cheddar Ale Spread
Hummus and Veggies
Pear, Pecan and Gorgonzola Salad
Puff Pastry Bites filled with Chicken Salad
Puff Pastry Bites filled with Goat Cheese and Roasted Peppers
Bacon wrapped Water Chestnuts in Blackberry BBQ Sauce 
Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting
Brownie Cake Bites with Caramel-Peanut Sauce

Ricotta Cheesecake with Mixed Seasonal Fruit

Beverages: White wine(La Crema Chardonnay, A to Z Pinot Gris), Izze Sodas in Blackberry, Apple and Clemintine. I really wanted the Pear but couldn’t find it anywhere. Strawberry Lemonade Smoothies.

I forgot to take pictures before we started to eat and some of the food was in the kitchen, but you get the idea.

I realized when I started writing this post that you all have not seen a picture of my completed kitchen. So here are two shots of the place where I spend most of my time.

Now onto the food. One of the desserts that was served was a Ricotta Cheesecake. If you have never had one, they are different from that of a New York Style cheesecake…much lighter and of course the texture is different due to the ricotta. I like to serve it at parties since it a little lighter. You can use whatever berries or fruit you would like on top. I chose strawberries for the shear fact that they were the best looking produce(fruit) that day.

Ricotta Cheesecake

For the Crust:

2 cups crushed vanilla Oreos or vanilla wafers
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup melted butter

Combine ingredients in a food processor. This makes for a thick crust. If you want less crust, half the recipe. Press mixture down flat into a greased 10-inch spring form pan.
Preheat oven to 350F. Bake crust for 12 minutes. Set aside.
For the Cheesecake:

1 pound cream cheese
1 pound Ricotta cheese
2 cups sour cream
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
6 eggs
1 tsp lemon zest
1 TBSP vanilla extract

Reduce oven heat to 325F.
Cream the cheeses on medium speed until soft and blended.
Add the sugar and mix well, about 3 minutes. Add the sour cream and mix for another minute.
Reduce speed to low and add flour.
Add eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add lemon zest and vanilla extract.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake in a water bath for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Check cheesecake after one hour.
When cake is removed from oven, remove it from water bath. Let cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Then refrigerate for at least 4 hours, overnight works best.

To make the fruit:

3 cups diced strawberries
juice of one lime
1/3 cup sugar

Mix together and let maserate overnight. Place onto of cheesecake when ready to serve.


  1. That looks beautiful. I love the buffet you had with everything individual. very nice. And you have a big kitchen. I’m jealous!

  2. I’ll trade you kitchens Peabody! :) Though I don’t think you’d really want any part in that bargain as your kitchen is lovely. Mine is… small.

  3. Nice kitchen! Love the fridge. That’s the kind I want in the next house. As for the cheesecake, ricotta cheesecake is probably my very favorite dessert, but I’ve never found a recipe I like. I just might have to try yours.

  4. it all looks beautiful…. the housewarming spread, the cheesecake, the kitchen! i’m still jealous of your wonderful kitchen!

  5. Peabody, between the incredible fare served at the housewarming, and the sight of your impeccable new kitchen, I am completely speechless – and that ricotta cheesecake is quite stunning as well!!

  6. That sounds like a lovely menu. The cheesecake looks delicious. I love your kitchen- the wood and the stainless steel appliances look beautiful together!

  7. I’m with you, cook for 50 even if there is only 5 coming over! The spread looked wonderful and I love the pig in the kitchen.

  8. I’m jealous of your fridge. We remodeled an older house, and the spot for the fridge is made to fit a fridge from the 50s, so my fridge is pretty small!

    Can I get you to cater my next get-together? I guess Utah would be a little far away, though…

  9. First of all you set and decorate a gorgeous table.

    I absolutely hate you (love you) for that kitchen. I would sell my husband for that.

    Fantastic cheesecake. I have always loved the ricotta ones.

  10. Omg, your new kitchen is FABULOUS!! Congrats — may you enjoy every minute you spend in it!

  11. What a beautiful kitchen…and a pig?

  12. Ah! Hit enter before I realised? But what that piggy doing in yr kitchen?

  13. Your kitchen looks great (and so sparkly clean)! You must have been reading my mind, posting this ricotta cheesecake recipe….my husband and I were just discussing the merits of cheesecake. He (of course) dislikes cream-cheesy cheesecake, so this will suit him perfectly. Can’t wait to try it out. Congrats on the new kitchen!

  14. Your kitchen looks fantastic! I am so jealous. I wish mine was half as nice as yours. If I could bake and cook in that ktichen all day long, I’d be one happy camper… I love the idea of lighter cheesecakes, ones that don’t weigh you down so much. I want to try this one; I like ricotta so much more than cream cheese. I think maybe using amaretti cookies for the crust would turn out nice too.

  15. what a kitchen! can i move in? ha ha

  16. That cheesecake looks killer. And your kitchen–how lovely! What a great canvas for creating all of the gorgeous goodies you come up with.

  17. Looks a beautiful party Miss P.
    Gorge-ee-oh-so cheesecakes.
    Your kitchen domain is lovely! I think we must have the same fridges.
    Many Blessings for your new home- may it be filled with light love and laughter!
    x x x

  18. I wish I would have been invited!!

  19. i love ricotta cheesecakes…have yet to try making one myself though. this looks fabulous! i’m glad you had a happy housewarming :) i’m envious of your enormous kitchen!

  20. What an incredible spread- I think you should win an award for being such a thoughtful hostess!

    Lovely, bright kitchen you have, too. It looks like the perfect place to unleash your creativity.

  21. What a gorgeous new kitchen! I love your counters. I’m not a big fan of New York-style cheesecake, but I happen to think that ricotta cheesecake is where it’s at. Looks like it was a lovely party!

  22. I’d love to savor a piece of that cheesecake while sitting in your lovely kitchen. Best of luck to you, Peabody!

  23. Oh my goodness. I am so coveting your kitchen right now. All that counter space! (I have like 15 inches of counter in this kitchen. Ugh.)

    And the food looks fab, too, of course. ;)

  24. Is that a Maytag refrigerator I see??? I chose between that one and the Samsung French door when we bought one last month. Samsung won!

  25. Lovely display and I love the kitchen! What I wouldn’t do for an island like that!

  26. Your new kitchen is to-die-for. I’m so jealous

  27. Hmmmm…I’ve never had a ricotta cheesecake. I definitely have to try it now! And I love your kitchen, your house looks beautiful!

  28. What a beautiful kitchen! I’d love to see a picture of it when you’re baking — I know that when I bake, which isn’t all that often, I seem to get flour everywhere.

  29. What a great spread of items! I love the little pig by the kitchen island! Enjoy the house…and of course that ricotta cheesecake made me hungry again!

  30. How lovely everything looks! You set a very elegant table. I love your kitchen too. So bright and airy! I think that I have the exact same fridge and microwave! I’ve been replacing my appliances one by one. My old stove is the last one to go.

  31. I’m sure I’m the millionth person to say this, but you’re kitchen is fabulous! I llloooove ricotta cheesecake.

  32. When can I move into your kitchen?

  33. What a fabulous menu. I adore your kitchen, I dream of having a middle island in my own kitchen someday.

  34. Ahhh that kitchen! The space! All those cabinets! The isle..sniff.. yes I’m jealous!

    The table you laid out to welcome your guests looks so inviting, did they ever want to leave again?

  35. I’m in love with your kitchen… its utterly gorgeous! We’re in the process of remodeling ours, and I can only hope mine will be as lovely as yours!

    Also, fabulous girly girl spead! The big burly hockey players would not have appreciated that!

  36. I enjoyed your virtual houswarming party, but the real one looks like it was awesome! beautifully laid out table, and your kitchen…. drool! A really wonderful kitchen for someone who likes to cook:) Congrats, hope you have years of happy baking in that kitchen!

  37. I want to cook with your piggy!
    Beautiful table Peabody! If you cook for 50 when it’s only 5 then everybody can just stay for dinner ;)
    Ricotta is the best cheesecake!!

  38. Oh Peabody you have the dream girls kitchen for sure. You are blessed. When hubby & I buy our house in 2 years the first thing I will look for is a new kitchen and then a BIG master bathroom for me :-)
    Wonderful job on the cheesecake.

  39. Your table groaning with good things, your cheesecake and your beautiful kitchen look fantastic!

  40. I’ve never had ricotta cheesecake, but yours looks very delicious. I really like your kitchen and your spread for the party sounds fabulous!

  41. Hahahahah — my mom raised me to cook for 50 no matter how many were coming, too! Love the menu, the table is gorgeous and LOVE the kitchen. I couldn’t get an island because of code issues in CA. Whatever. The cheesecake sounds and looks scrumptious! Ricotta does make it lovely.

  42. Wow look at the counter space! How wonderful for you!

  43. Beautiful kitchen and menu. May you have many good times in your new home.

  44. Beautiful array of food and fantastic kitchen…especially all those cabinets and counters…lots of counter space…wheeeee. Your friends probably thought they hit the jackpot when they saw (and tasted) such wonderful food. Happy cooking in your new home, Peabody.

  45. Fabulous buffet. I love your kitchen.

  46. Wow. What a fabulous kitchen! I don’t think one can ever have enough storage space. Great menu and lovely food. I make an orange-flavored ricotta cheesecake with a biscotti crust that’s really delicious. I can’t decide which kind of cheesecake I prefer — I guess both kinds.

  47. I could be very creative in that kitchen Peabody :D I love your piggy :D I have never tried a ricotta cheesecake, but you make it sound so intriguing I will have to give it a try :D

  48. A treat for many hungry mouths! Nice cake.

  49. oh I love that cutie piggy and your huge fridge!

  50. I’m soooo jealous….you have such a beautiful big kitchen!
    There’s nothing like a good cheesecake!(except maybe a beautifull kitchen :) )

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