One of the ingredients may be “disappointment”, but the end result is far from it.

Japanese buzzword pien (meaning “sadness or disappointment”) was announced as the 2020 Word of the Year back in December, an excellent way to sum up the horror show that was 2020 in a single word.

Online, pien is represented by the watery-eyed emoji (🥺), and for a while Japanese social media was flooded with people making pien cookies.

“Gonna try making some pien cookies on this lazy Sunday!”

But pien is so 2020. So to say hello to 2021, Japanese Twitter user @mayuwassan came up with a clever way of taking the trend one step further: making pien cheesecake.

”Got tired of making pien cookies, so I smashed them up and made a cheesecake.”

Mayuwassan decorated store-bought cookies with pien faces, put them in a zip-lock bag, and smashed them with a rolling pin to make the biscuit-y base. After mixing the cookie remnants with some melted butter, she had the perfect base for a delicious pien cheesecake, which she poured into a dish and put in the fridge to cool.

While waiting for it to chill, Mayuwassan started making the filling mixture, using cream cheese, sugar, flour, heavy cream and eggs. With the base finally cooled, she put the mixture on top, popped it in the oven, and 45 minutes later she had a delicious cheesecake, ready to enjoy!

▼ Watch it being made here with Mayuwassan’s instructional video.

If you want to recreate the pien cheesecake yourself, here’s the recipe:

Base ingredients
Cookies (Mayuwassan recommends using store-bought cookies instead of making them)
Chocolate pens
Melted butter (30 grams, 1 ounce)

Filling ingredients
Cream cheese (200 grams, 7 ounces)
Sugar (90 grams, 3 ounces)
Eggs (2)
Flour (45 grams, 3 tbsp)
Heavy cream (200 ml)
Lemon juice (15 grams, 1 tbsp)

1. Decorate the cookies with pien faces. When they’re dry, grab a rolling pin, put them in a zip lock bag, and smash to bits.
2. Melt butter in the microwave and mix in the smashed cookies.
3. Put the cookie base in a tin with a baking sheet and put it in the fridge.
4. Heat up the cream cheese so it’s easy to mix. Mix in the sugar, eggs, heavy cream and sifted flour.
5. Once the cookie mix has cooled, pour the cream cheese mixture on top and put it in the oven at 170 degrees Celsius (340 Fahrenheit) for about 45 minutes, or until it starts to brown.

▼ Last step: enjoy your pien!

Internet users were amused by Mayuwassan’s creation, specifically the part where she carefully decorated some beautiful looking cookies only to smash them up into unrecognisable pieces, which Mayuwassan claims in the how-to video was “good for relieving stress.

“If you crush up some more pien cookies and sprinkle them on the top, your cake will be even more pien!”
“Every act of creation comes from an act of destruction. This is beautiful.”
“The fact that this is so cute kinda cancels out the fact that this idea is crazy!”
“Rest in peace, beautifully-made
pien cookies. Your creator is merciless.”
“It’s such a contrast — the cookies are so cute and the voiceover is so calm, and then… the cookies are completely destroyed.”

It’s almost poetic, using up all of the sadness from 2020 to move forward and start a happier (and more delicious) chapter in your life with 2021.

If only there were some way to eat away all of our life’s stresses…. Until we can think of some way to do that, we’ll just have to be satisfied stuffing ourselves with every single flavor of Mister Donut. The only pien to feel there is when they’re all gone!

Source: Twitter@mayuwassan
Images: Twitter@mayuwassan, YouTube: まゆワッサン〜Mayuwassan〜
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