Great desserts are a necessity for the dysphagia patient (the person with swallowing difficulties). Maintaining a good caloric intake is extremely important. The dessert adds calories and nutrition to the diet.
One of the easiest no-recipe recipes, cheesecake has an ideal texture for puree. This dessert uses cheesecake bought from the bakery department of your supermarket as a shortcut. I could give you a recipe for making cheesecake, but it takes time. If you need to get a snack or dessert on the table and have a good bakery, this is easy, tasty and fabulous. As always, it is best to check with your healthcare provider.
For this puree, the patient should be able to tolerate cream cheese that is full fat. This is not for those who are lactose intolerant. Those who require lactose-free recipes, please check the freezer department of your Whole Foods Market. There you can find lactose-free cheesecake. Puree according to the directions below. For those who prefer gluten-free, do not puree the graham cracker crust. Cheesecake with fruit topping is delicious all by itself.
In the bakery department of a supermarket, the shopper can buy one serving of cheesecake. This can be plain cheesecake or sometimes cheesecake with fruit glaze on top, usually cherry. Please buy a piece or two, if you want to make more than one serving.
For the Puree
Spoon the cheesecake part of the cake into the bowl of your food processor, add a tablespoon of milk, and pulse. Add milk as needed to get a pudding consistency puree. Scrape the bowl of the food processor with a spatula and put the puréed cheesecake into a bowl, keeping it to one side. Wash the bowl of the food processor.
Take the cherry topping and add it to the bowl and pulse it, using a bit of warm water to get a smooth consistency. Add this to the space reserved in the serving bowl for the fruit. This makes a visually appealing service and is especially nice for the patient who is bored with the look of puréed food that has no visual appeal.
You may wash the bowl again and add the graham cracker crust that is standard for most plain cheesecake. Pulse the crust with a half teaspoon of butter or vegetable oil and then puree until all grains have disappeared. You want a very smooth texture. If grains remain, put the crust through a metal sieve with a spatula until you get a smooth texture. If you cannot get a smooth texture, eliminate the crust. The crust then goes in a third vacant space in the bowl.
For service, you take some of each element of the dish on a spoon, or give the elements in sequence. That way, the dysphagia patient gets a bite of three distinct flavors and not one swirl with all three elements in one puree. This is ideal for the object of the Essential Puree dysphagia kitchen is to maintain pleasure in food. This has three elements: visual appeal, taste and texture.
Note: There is a recipe for fruit sauce in the Essential Puree Guidebook. It is made from fresh fruit.
A good substitute for a fresh fruit sauce is a good fruit spread. There are some excellent store-bought brands. Cascade Farm, Field Day, and my personal favorite, Fiordifrutta. They have a smooth texture of a pudding consistency and may be used as a topping if your bakery only has plain cheesecake.