April 21, 2017 lyukum

Easter Kefir Cheese Paskha

Easter Kefir Cheese Paskha

“Cheese paskha is a traditional Easter dish made from quark (curd cheese, Russian: творог, tr. tvorog), which is white, symbolizing the purity of Christ, the Paschal Lamb, and the joy of the Resurrection. It is formed in a mold, traditionally in the shape of a truncated pyramid (a symbol of the Church; this form is also said to represent the Tomb of Christ). It is usually served as an accompaniment to a rich Easter bread called paska in Ukrainian and kulich in Russian.”SOURCE

In my family, we never used eggs in our raw molded cheese paskha. So I was surprised to discover other recipes with eggs as well as with cooking paskha this way or another. All traditional variations are pretty decadent — a lot of milk fat not only in the cheese but also in added cream and butter, which is expected after the fast when these foods were forbidden.

This modern version of fresh cheese paskha is based on one of the traditional Ukrainian recipes from the book Традиційна українська кухня в народному календарі, page 109, Паска сирна з вершками:

Easter Fresh Cheese Paskha: One of Ukrainian Recipes

Easter Fresh Cheese Paskha: One of Ukrainian Recipes

I hesitated to use raw eggs and based this modern version of fresh cheese paskha on one of the traditional Ukrainian recipes with cooked egg yolks. I thought why not to start with Creme Anglaise, which is egg yolks, sugar, and cream cooked together into a thick custard. Apparently, this brilliant idea already came to BARBARA ROLEK just a few days earlier. Bright minds!

This recipe is honed for a specific moisture content of fresh cheese. The kefir cheese recipe and proportions are described in my Syrniki posting.

Easter Kefir Cheese Paskha
Easter Kefir Cheese Paskha
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Rating: 5
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Prep Time 15minutes
Cook Time 2minutes
Passive Time 12hours
Servings paskha
Easter Kefir Cheese Paskha
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Prep Time 15minutes
Cook Time 2minutes
Passive Time 12hours
Servings paskha
Ingredients
Units:
Ingredients
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Instructions
  1. Prepare 1 lb mold by lining it with a clean damp cheesecloth. Measure all ingredients. Cube butter.
  2. Cut open a vanilla bean, scrape the seeds and reserve them. Infuse the cream with scraped pods by slowly bringing it to simmer in a saute pan. Turn off the heat, cover with a lid and let cool down to room temperature. Strain, discard the pods.
  3. Press kefir cheese through a sieve.
  4. Fill a bowl with ice-cold water and soak a 2g gelatine sheet in it.
  5. Make Creme Anglaise. In a saute pan, combine egg yolks, sugar, and flavored heavy whipping cream (should bot be hot!). Have a thermometer handy. Cook the mixture over low heat until it reaches 170F.
  6. Turn off the heat, add soaked and squeezed gelatine, continue stirring for a few minutes. When it stops steaming, add butter and emulsify it with a whisk. Add cheese, vanilla seeds, and raisins and combine well.
  7. Transfer the mixture into the lined mold, level it with the edges, cover with the free ends of cheesecloth, and refrigerate for 12 hours.
  8. Turn the mold upside down to release the cheese paskha and remove the cheesecloth. Decorate paskha with dry fruit, candied peel, and nuts.
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TASTES ARE MADE, NOT BORN

Culinary coach and personal chef with extensive knowledge of various ethnic cuisines,
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