Cheesecake – A Brief History

The first “cheese cake” may have been created on the Greek island of Samos according to studies based on findings by physical anthropologists in this region. In Greece, cheesecake was considered to be a good source of energy, and there is evidence that it was served to athletes during the first Olympic games in 776 B.C. Greek brides and grooms were also known to use cheesecake as a wedding cake. The simple ingredients of flour, wheat, honey and cheese were formed into a cake and baked.

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As the Romans expanded their empire, they brought cheesecake recipes to the Europeans. Great Britain and Eastern Europe began experimenting with ways to put their own unique spin on cheesecake. Even Henry VIII’s chef did his part to shape the cheesecake recipe! It is said, his chef cut up cheese into very small pieces and soaked those pieces in milk for three hours. Then, he strained the mixture and added eggs, butter and sugar.

It was not until the 18th century, that cheesecake started to look like something we enjoy today.

strawberry cheesecake
strawberry cheesecake

Today we have many varieties and options to choose from and have found this dessert to have achieved somewhat of a cultural phenomenon status evolving typical restaurants into places to enjoy this specialty specifically; for example “The Cheesecake Factory”.

This popular chain boasts 36 different flavours of cheesecake from sweet, to salty; they have their bases covered.

Cheesecakes have also become a popular staple at dessert buffets and bars; lending themselves to a less traditional look and to more of a “dessert to go” function; providing tasters a smaller, cleaner, individualized option.

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It has also been noticed that Cheesecakes are making a popular rising in the wedding industry as well as more couples are choosing creative wedding cheesecake designs that offer individual cakes to guests to enjoy ; but still offering the couple a top tier.

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Whether you enjoy it plain, chocolate, New York Style, Sweet, Salty or BOTH! The word of cheesecake is ever evolving and always lending itself to the creativeness of the Baker or customer’s whims!

~Antonia

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