All of this soul searching is making me hungry.

The blog is back from Cheesecake Festival hiatus! Thank you to all of our volunteers, sponsors and guests for your support, this year’s event was our best to date.

I’m all about seasonality.

I drink Pumpkin Spice lattes in November, Peppermint Mochas in December… but even though Girl Scout cookie season is over, those darn things can last for months in the freezer. A close friend, whose name I will not reveal, sent me a text the other day that read “I feel terrible, I just scarfed down three frozen Girl Scout cookies in rapid succession.” I shook my head and smiled.

Been there, sister. I don’t believe I’ve ever eaten three packages in one sitting, but I’ve come close.

Then I read the message again. She had eaten three COOKIES, not three BOXES of cookies.

Um…huh?

I can understand feeling guilty about eating an entire row of cookies. An entire package. An entire Girl Scout. But three little itty bitty innocent cookies? And was the word “scarfed” really necessary to describe the terribly average and everyday act of eating three small cookies on one sitting?

I made fun of my poor, innocent friend for hours.

But then it got me thinking about food and guilt. Am I such a glutton that I feel the need to make fun of a friend for doing something that I would never – but perhaps should – feel guilty about? Is my attitude the reason that so many Americans are overweight?

On the other hand, why does this lovely, slender woman need to feel guilty about eating something that she enjoys? I never feel guilty about snacking on some sweet stuff (I mean, how can you work in a cheesecake bakery and not grab a little dessert every now and then).

At Eli’s special events it is particularly enjoyable to serve cheesecakes because they make so many people happy. But there are always a few guests who will whistle and say “boy, those look dangerous!” Dangerous. Decadent. Sinful. Since when is a dessert something to fear? And in these harsh times an affordable luxury, like a cheesecake, has the ability to brighten your mood. And that is definitely worth a few extra calories.

Much soul searching and many slices of Dark Chocolate Banana Cheesecake later, I’ve come to a happy conclusion. At my ripe old age of 30, I feel like I’ve grown into a content and confident person because I am not in the habit of denying myself the small pleasures in life. The key to happiness is balance and moderation.

And desserts.

Lots and lots of desserts.

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