ostkaka - swedish cheesecake

Now that I'm back home in Sydney, summer is over and I've returned to some cooler weather. When the temperature drops, I start hankering for soups, casseroles, puddings and pies. I saw some pictures of Ostkaka on a blog and was intrigued, so I tracked down a recipe. It's a Swedish pudding which is a cross between a baked custard and a cheesecake and as I like both of those things, I decided to give it a try. 

Have you heard of Ostkaka 'cos a week or so ago I'd not heard of it either. It's normally served with berries but as I had some rhubarb and strawberry compote in the fridge, I decided to top the ostkaka with that.

My main inspiration came from this blogI'm not a huge fan of cottage cheese, the main ingredient of ostkaka, and I wasn't in the mood to make my own curd cheese from scratch so I decided to swap some of the cottage cheese for ricotta cheese.

In a piece of serendipity, the serving plate I used was an antique Swedish one I bought when I was in Copenhagen and carefully carried all the way home.

Here's the recipe for you. You'll need to drain the cheese the night before you make the Ostkaka.

2 eggs
2½ tbl flour
3 tbl caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
30 g (1oz) almond meal
30 g (1 oz) toasted flaked almonds, finely chopped
½ cup milk and ½ cup cream, mixed together
500 g low fat ricotta cheese/cottage cheese drained in a sieve overnight

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF. Butter a 20cm/8 inch round pan.

Whisk the eggs, the flour, the sugar and the vanilla together in a bowl.

Combine the almond meal and chopped almonds. Stir in a third of the almonds, a third of the milk and a third of the cheese mixture into the egg mixture. Continue adding the remaining ingredients in thirds. (The batter is quite lumpy so I gave it a bit of a whizz with the stick blender to smooth the batter a little).

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake in the preheated oven 180ºC/350ºF for about 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the cake has puffed and is brown on the top.

Serve warm with rhubarb compote, berries or lingonberry jam and cream. Serves 4 very generously.

The pudding is not very sweet and almost rice pudding like in taste and texture. Next time I would double the vanilla extract and maybe use a touch more sugar as my rhubarb compote was nowhere near as sweet as jam would be. Or then again perhaps I could open that jar of lingonberry jam that's lurking in my cupboard.

See you all again soon,


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