Cheesecake is believed to have originated in ancient Greece. History says small cheesecakes were served to athletes during the first Olympic games held in 776 BC on the Island of Delos.
When the Romans conquered Greece, they began making cheesecake as well, using it as an offering in the temples to their gods. The first written recipe for cheesecake, called libum, came from Cato The Elder, a Roman politician who wrote about farming, winemaking and cooking in the second century BC.
The Romans made cheesecake popular throughout Europe and centuries later immigrants brought it to America. In 1929 Arnold Reuben, a restaurant owner in New York City, is said to have developed the first cheesecake made with cream cheese. Other restaurants followed with their own recipes and New York style cheesecake was born. Nowadays you can find cheesecakes with a wide variety of flavors and toppings.
So enjoy. Today you really do have an excuse.
Happy National Cheesecake Day!