When I was growing up in Chicago, our suburb was so diverse that we got school holidays for just about everything: all the Jewish holidays, Christian holidays, Martin Luther King Day, Columbus Day, President’s Day, Casimir Pulaski Day… yep, we even celebrated the contributions of a Polish military officer to the American Revolution. It was a good life. I’m neither Jewish nor Polish, but hey — when you’re eight years old, the more school off, the better. It wasn’t until I left Chicago that I realized not everyone celebrates Casimir Pulaski Day. And perhaps a little more significantly, not everyone comes from a neighborhood in which all those holidays would mean so much to so many people. I was lucky to grow up where I did, in more ways than one.
Back in February the food blogging world celebrated another beautiful but random holiday: World Nutella Day. This event probably deserved way more fanfare than it received in the world outside the cyber loony bin that is the food blogging community. Nutella is a total obsession… my best friend from college likes to tell about when she lived in France and would sneak downstairs to her host family’s kitchen at night to eat Nutella from the cupboard with a spoon.
All the sudden a comparison between World Nutella Day and a certain day in late April seems appropriate, but I won’t go there. My blog is still too young and tender.
I can’t think of a more perfect combination of textures and flavors to celebrate our chocolate-hazelnut drug of choice than these Nutella Cheesecake Squares, which I made using a recipe from Coconut & Lime. I love this blog and feel slightly nervous about posting a recipe from it, since all the recipes it features are 100% original. Soooo once again, please pop on over to get this lovely recipe. The crust is chewy and chocolately in the best way, since the chew comes from Old Fashioned Oats and the chocolate flavor comes from the bitter cocoa, and the cheesecake layers are tart and sweet with that nutty aroma from the Nutella.
I made these with my friend Kate who had never had Nutella before (I know! SO weird). She was leaving for seven weeks in India the next morning, and I’m pretty sure that the jar actually went with her. There’s always room for Nutella, right? So go make these bars!