Friday, June 21, 2013

Russischer Zupfkuchen (German "Russian-Style" Cheesecake)

Russian German Cheesecake
My six-year old son loves looking through my German Baking Book and picking out things to make.  He picked this one because there were plastic diamond props under the dessert.  He's really into diamonds right now.  :)  This is one I actually wanted to make anyway, so I was glad he was so excited about it.  
Russian German Cheesecake
This is a popular dessert in Germany- you can even buy a mix to make it, from a grocery store.  On one of my first visits to Germany, there was even a "special edition" yogurt that was this flavor.  The kids really liked this cheesecake.  It's not terribly sweet, so some enjoyed it with a drizzle of chocolate of chocolate syrup on top.
Russian German Cheesecake
Russischer Zupfkuchen (German "Russian-Style" Cheesecake)
adapted from German Baking Today

250 g/9 oz all-purpose flour
30 g/1 oz cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
125 g/4.5 oz sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 medium egg
125 g/4.5 oz butter, melted and cooled

150 g/5 oz butter, softened
500 g/18 oz low fat Quark* cheese
150 g/5.5 oz sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 medium eggs
40 g/1.5 oz instant custard powder (Bird's)

1.  Grease an 8 or 9-inch spring form pan.  

2.  To make the dough: mix together the flour with the cocoa powder and baking powder, sift into a mixing bowl and add the other ingredients for the dough.  Stir with a hand mixer until dough is formed.  It should be firm, like sugar cookie dough.  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.  

2.  Preheat oven to 350 F or 180 C.  Divide the dough into fourths mentally.  Take 3/4 of the dough and reserve the last 1/4 for later.  Roll out the bigger part of the dough to line the greased spring form pan.  Press into place, making sure it is snug against the pan and up the sides about an inch or a little more.

3.  Make the filling by whisking together the quark cheese, sugar, vanilla, eggs, custard powder and melted butter until smooth.  Pour this into the spring form pan and smooth the surface flat.  Then, tear the rest of the dough (the 1/4) into small pieces and scatter over the top of the filling.  Place the cheesecake in the oven.  

4.  Bake for 50-65 minutes or until just a little jiggle remains in the center.  Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack.  Refrigerate for at least a few hours before eating, or overnight.  

*Quark is a German fresh cheese.  It's similar to thick sour cream, or Greek yogurt, or plain yogurt that has been strained overnight.  
Russian German Cheesecake
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Katie Richmond said...

So, if I was in the states with no access to Quark, what would be a good analog? Using half cream cheese and half Greek yogurt?

What a Dish! said...

If you go to a "big city store", lol, they might have it. I've seen it in the Seattle area. BUT, I think that the mix you suggested would be perfect- half cream cheese and half Greek yogurt. Or maybe more Greek yogurt. It's really creamy and thick, like Greek yogurt, but not as thick as cream cheese.