Scandinavian cheesecake - photo philip blankenship

Since 2004 Swedes have celebrated “ostkakans dag” (cheesecake day) on November 14, a glorious day simply dedicated to cheesecakes. It is fascinating how many ways a simple combination of eggs and dairy can be prepared with more or less varied results. Most countries and even regions have their own idea of the perfect cheesecake and Sweden is no exception. Born and raised in southern Sweden with a mom from northern Norway, this is my ideal creation. The soft and grainy texture that reminds me of baked rice pudding and soufflé is typical of Småland (a province close to my home town) and so is the addition of sweet and bitter almond. Cloudberries, typically grow only at high alpine altitudes, was introduced as a must condiment by my mom.

There are many slightly different recipes creating this type of cheesecake, some from scratch, some using ricotta or cottage cheese. I prefer using cottage cheese, still making it from scratch when possible, recipe here. Ricotta cheese can be equally substituted for variation.


gluten free swedish cheesecake served with whipped cream and cloudberries
ingredients

2 cups firm (or strained) cottage cheese
2 eggs
2 yolks
½ cup cream
2 tablespoons honey
4 drops almond extract
¼ cup roughly chopped raw almonds
3 tablespoon potato starch
3 tablespoons milk powder

directions

Mix all ingredients and fill 6 buttered ramekins.

Bake at 350F/175C for about 50 minutes until the cheesecakes turn golden brown and almost set. They should be a little jiggly but will firm up slightly when they cool.

Serve luke warm or cold with soft whipped cold cream and jam or fresh berries.

Serves 6.


Photography by Philip Blankenship.