Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Polish Cheesecake

Polish Cheesecake

 I really love ethnic desserts and I have to say I am very partial to European style pastries.  Polish cheesecake is called Sernik.  This is not a typical American style cheesecake.  This is very European and I adore it.  It's encased in a cookie like crust and the filling is dense.  Make a strong espresso and cut yourself a small piece of heaven.   Enjoy this homey, yet sophisticated Sernik.  

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 stick unsalted butter
2 large eggs
3 T. heavy cream
1 tsp. baking powder
pinch salt

Place all ingredients in food processor and process until it forms a dough.  Remove, cover in plastic wrap and place in fridge for 1-2 hours. 

Cheesecake Filling:
8 oz. Ricotta Cheese (Whole Fat)
1 8 oz. cream Cheese (room temperature)
1 cup cottage cheese (full fat)
1 stick unsalted butter, softened to room temp
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1/3 cup flour
1 tsp. vanilla
1T. rum
1 tsp. almond extract
1 grated lemon rind
1/4 cup raisins, soaked in rum (discard rum)
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips

Mix three cheeses, butter and sugar until creamy, beat on low.  You do not want to over beat or whip you want a dense cheese mixture not airy mixture.  Add eggs mix well.  Add flour, vanilla, rum, almond extracts.  Add lemon rind, raisins and mini chips mix well.  Set aside.  

Line a 9x9 square pan with aluminum foil with an overhang of 2 inches on each side for easy lifting.  

Take 2/3 of dough and pressed onto cookie sheet.  Prick with fork.  Bake for about 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven until lightly golden brown.  Remove and cool.  

Add cheese mixture and spread evenly with offset spatula.  

Take remaining dough, on a well floured surface roll out dough like a pie crust.  Using a fluted pizza cutter, cut strips and do a criss-cross design on top of cheese mixture.  Add more strips around edge of cheesecake.  Look at pic above.  

Bake in oven for about 1 hour.  Shut oven off, crack door open and leave Cheesecake for another hour.  Remove from oven, cool and place in fridge for 4 to 5 hours. 

Using a sharp knife cut around the edge of pan where the aluminum foil is not.  Using the overhand pull out cheese cake.  Put on a plate. 

Cover with glaze.  I use a pastry brush and brush the glaze on.  Let glaze set by placing back in fridge for an hour or so.  

When ready,  cut into small squares.  Enjoy!

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