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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Swabian Cheese Cake

After living 'abroad' for 2 years, the first thing my son wanted when he came home was a real typical swabian cheese cake.  Guess he has not lost the perspective for the swabian culture. 

A swabian cheese cake (or german cheese cake in general) is made with QUARK.  Quark is a curd/cottage cheese with dry, smooth texture with the fat-free type having a chalky taste.   It is very different to cream cheese like Philadelphia which most of you know.    

This is a very basic simple cheese cake without 'anything' - anything meaning without raisins, mandarins or pears. 

150 gm all purpose flour )
1/2 tsp baking powder    )    Or 150 gm self-raising flour
50 gm sugar
50 gm (soft)butter
1 egg (M)
28cm loose-bottom pan

(Sorry, forgot to take any photos)
1.Make pastry by kneading quickly the ingredients and chill for 30 mins.

2.Line pan bottom with non-stick baking paper.  

3.Brush sides with vegetable fat.

4.Roll out pastry thinly between 2 clingfilm and press the rolled dough evenly onto the bottom and sides of pan. 

5.The crust should be thin and should you have problem with sticky dough, just put the rolled out dough (between clingfilm) into the refrigerator for 5 mins. Most important, there should not be holes. For me, I had 20 gm leftover dough after lining the pan.  Set lined pan aside.

500 gm Quark  or Schichtkäse
300 gm (2 tubs Schmand) sour cream
200 ml (1 tub Schlagsahne) whipping cream
150 gm sugar     )
50 gm cornflour  ) Mix sugar and cornflour together to prevent lumps
Zest from 1 lemon
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla essence
7 egg yolks (M)

7 eggwhite (M)
1 tbsp sugar

1 tbsp apricot jam for brushing

Basic ingredients for filling  :

Quark, whipping cream and sour cream


Set oven at 220°C

1.Place all ingredients (except egg white) into a mixing bowl and mix well.

2.Whip eggwhite with 1 tbsp sugar till stiff that when you overturn it, the eggwhite still remain in bowl.

3.Fold whipped eggwhite into 'cheese' mixture.

4. Pour mixture into lined cake pan, making sure to level the surface.  The mixture should just fill up the pan to the rim.

5. Bake at 220°C for 20 mins.  Depending on individual oven, some might just need 15mins.  You have to know your oven.

6. The cheese should have raised evenly about 1 cm over the rim.

7. Carefully, take cake out of oven and place on an even surface for 5 minutes - 1st PAUSE

8. With a small knive, make a 1 cm cut between the cheese and crust and return cake to oven.

9. Set oven temperature at 200°C and bake another 20 mins.

10. Remove cake from oven again and set aside for 5 minutes - 2nd PAUSE

11. Finally, place cake back into oven.  Set oven temperature to 170°C-160°C and bake 20-30 mins till the middle is firm/set.  The top might be a bit dark but it should not burn.

12. Remove cake from oven and let it rest for at least 30 mins.  

13. Brush top with apricot jam for an inviting shine .

Do not attempt to loosen cake at all when it is still hot.  Usually the crust will slowly loosen itself from the sides. I only removed the pan after the cake has cooled down to hand warm temperature. 

This was the last piece rescued and hidden in the  refrigerator for 3 days.

Creamy and fluffy