You will have noticed that I don’t do pretty cakes. I just haven got the patience to deal with sugar craft and decorations. I like cakes that I can throw together quickly and that don’t leave my kitchen look like a war zone. Take this cake for example – you only need two bowls and you can have it on the table in less than one hour from when you crack the first egg.
For me it’s all about the taste. Quark is one of my favourite baking ingredients and shouldn’t be substituted for anything else (you can get it both at Sainsbury’s and Waitrose). I find it far superior to cream cheese. It is lighter, has a little bit more acidity and is not as rich. I wanted to get a glass of sour cherries to use for my cake, but, as so often when you are looking for something specific, had no luck. I was contemplating something completely different when I cam across punnets of fresh cherries, all reduced to clear. In the end there were only four cherries I couldn’t use and the end result with the fresh fruit was very nice indeed.And it did turn out pretty after all – even if I say so myself.
Ingredients for the base and streusel:
250g unsalted butter
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
a few drops of vanilla aroma
Ingredients for the filling:
1 kg quark (4 pots @ 250g)
juice from 1 lemon
1 pack lemon or orange Dr. Oetker Finesse*
(alternatively the zest from 1 unwaxed, untreated lemon)
1 packet Dr. Oetker vanilla pudding*
fruit or berries– fresh or tinned.
I used 600g fresh cherries, which I halved and stoned. But this recipe also works well with tinned apricots or mandarins or fresh plums.
*though widely available in Germany, a bit trickier to get in the UK, though the German Deli in London’s Borough Market or Hackney Wick stock both. You can also order online from their website http://www.germandeli.co.uk.
Line a deep baking tray with baking parchment (I currently don’t have a deep baking tray that fits into my oven, so I substituted it with a couple of large roasting tins). Prepare a crumbly dough from the first set of ingredients. Set one third aside and fill the rest of the mix into the baking tray and spread evenly. Press it down with your hands to form a smooth base. Mix the second set of ingredients until smooth and spread on the base. Top with the fruit and press them slightly into the quark filling. Sprinkle with the crumble mix you set aside earlier.Preheat the oven to 200C, leave for 15 minutes and then turn the temperature down to 175C. Bake for 30 minutes and turn the heat up to 200C for another 5 minutes. Take out of the oven and leave to cool.