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Bake cheesecake to beat cabin fever, says Canadian provincial chief

"Ontario Premier Doug Ford, seen in this December 2018 photo at a meeting of Canadian leaders in Montreal, shared his aunt's cheesecake recipe in a cooking video on Friday and urged Canadians to bake to ease stress during the pandemic. - MARTIN OUELLET-DIOTTE / ©AFP"
"Ontario Premier Doug Ford, seen in this December 2018 photo at a meeting of Canadian leaders in Montreal, shared his aunt's cheesecake recipe in a cooking video on Friday and urged Canadians to bake to ease stress during the pandemic. - MARTIN OUELLET-DIOTTE / ©AFP"

(AFP)

After 60 days of coronavirus lockdown, the leader of Ontario province offered Canadians a recipe to beat their cabin fever on Friday: his aunt’s home-made cheesecake.

“Do you know what one of the most popular ways to manage stress is? Baking!” Premier Doug Ford said in a tweet accompanying the two-and-a-half-minute clip which 250,000 people viewed by midday.

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Ford had boasted about the “made from scratch” recipe to reporters at a daily pandemic briefing earlier in the week.

“You can tell I’ve eaten one too many cheesecakes,” said the portly and self-deprecating leader, whose folksy, no-nonsense style helped to catapult his personal popularity during the state of emergency.

Indeed, baking has become a popular pastime for many homebound Canadians and Americans in recent weeks, prompting a run on flour at grocery stores across North America.

In the video, Ford measures out ingredients all laid out on his kitchen counter at home, spins an electric mixer and melts ingredients in a pot on the stove, while commenting: “Put a little butter, put a little graham crackers, put a little sugar… Beautiful.”

“If I wasn’t premier, I’d open up a cheesecake factory,” he quips, dressed casually in a black t-shirt that reads “We’re all in this together.”

And then, after topping it off with a can of cherries and tasting a spoonful of his creation, he throws a kiss and lets out a hearty “ho ho.”

“That, my friends, is the premier’s cheesecake,” Ford concludes. “These are some of the fun things you can do when self-isolating.”

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