Last Saturday afternoon we made plans to have coffee and cake at Jola and Heinz’s house. The occasion was that one of Thorsten’s cousins was coming over with her fiancé to deliver their wedding invitation personally. Jola had cheesecake (Käse Kuchen) on the menu, so I went over in the morning to see how she bakes it.
To start, here are her pro tips:
*Always refrigerate dough before making anything with it.
*Make sure you use a deep baking dish or it could run over the side (she uses a very large rectangle that looks like a cookie sheet but with higher sides. A 13×9 might work too.)
*When you mix the filling, mix first with the mixer, but once you add the oil and the milk it will splash everywhere so switch to a whisk and stir until you really can’t see the oil at all.
*When it comes out of the oven, if it wiggles it’s not ready.
The afternoon was good fun. It was lovely to meet more of our family and I’m excited to attend my first German wedding! (German weddings don’t have ending times.) I’m happy and relieved to report that some people you meet don’t mind listening to slow German, spoken clearly, yet badly, by a foreigner. These people are a God send for someone like me and the situations are golden because they are good practice and they raise your confidence. It was a happy occasion for everyone and the cheesecake was delicious.
Here’s the recipe, I’ve translated it into American ingredients, and standards.
100 gr. Margarine or butter (1/2 cup)
200 gr. Sugar (1 cup)
375 gr. Flour
1 packet of baking powder (about a 1/2 Tbsp.)
2 packages of quark (quark is kind of like sour cream, kind of like cream cheese and kind of like creme fraiche) Jola says that lowfat works better for texture, but I prefer high fat for taste. (If you are in the US you could use 1 package of plain regular fat greek yogurt and one package of Mascarpone cheese to attain the texture and tang of the quark.)
1 small container of sour cream (save the container)
1 container of vegetable oil (use the sour cream container)
2 containers of whole milk (use the sour cream container again)
1 container of vanilla pudding
275 gr. sugar (1 1/3 cups)
2 cans of mandarine oranges (I would use more, but some people don’t like mandarine that much)
Glaze for topping:
Jola uses a packet called Tortenguss Klar (Clear Cake Glaze). To make the glaze add 1cup of the reserved mandarine juice to the package of sugar and add butter to that, stirring with a whisk. Right before the cake cimes out of the open, you warm the glaze up on the stove but not too hot.
First preheat to 160 celcius (320 F). In Germany the ovens have a lot of heating options, heat from above, heat from below, heat above and below and fan heat that moves around the whole oven (or convection). For this recipe, Jola uses above and below heat. If you don’t have that option, you might raise your temperature to 350. If you have convection then you probably should lower your temperature a bit.
Mix up the dough for the crust. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
In the meantime, mix up the filling. Remember to switch from an electric beater to a whisk before you add the oil or the milk.
Remove the dough from the fridge and press it into your buttered baking pan,
Then pour filling over it. The filling will be really thin, don’t worry it will thicken up in the baking.
Open the mandarin oranges, drain and reserve the juice.
Carefully place the oranges over the whole top of the filling.
Bake in the oven for about 45 minutes. When the cake comes out use a paint brush to pain the whole thing with the glaze and then let it set. Cut it out of the pan before serving.