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Russian Easter Cake (Pashka)

This recipe is in categories Desserts, Party food
About this recipe
Healthiness : (8 votes)
Difficulty:  5 out of 5 difficulty
Comments: This is a very time consuming recipe but tastes delicious. You will also need a dish with openings in the base, and a fabric called cheesecloth.
Preparation Time: 35 minutes preparation - 1 day including the time that the dish needs to be left to be ready.
Cooking Time: No cooking required
Number of servings: 12-14 servings
This is a vegetarian recipe


Russian Orthodox Christians created this dessert to celebrate Easter. This dessert is similar to cheesecake without the crust. It's also known as 'Pasha' in Finland. Other ingredients can be used instead of the candied fruit and almonds.
Ingredients
  • 1.3 kilos (3 lbs) cottage cheese
  • 115g (4½ oz) unsalted butter, softened (room temperature)
  • 2.5ml (½ teaspoon) vanilla extract
  • just under 300ml (½ pint) double cream or whipping cream
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 175g (7oz) caster sugar
  • 50g (2 oz) blanched almonds, finely chopped
  • 50g (2 oz) whole almonds, toasted
  • 50g (2 oz) candied fruits and candied peels (eg lemon, orange)
  • 25g (1 oz) almonds and candied fruit for decoration
  • pinch salt
Equipment
  • Weighing scales
  • Measuring jug
  • Teaspoon
  • Colander
  • Small bowl
  • Wooden spoon
  • Blender
  • Large bowl
  • Saucepan
  • Whisk
  • Metal spoon
  • 3 pint Clay flower pot or a firm dish with openings in the bottom
  • Cheesecloth
Making and cooking it
Always wash your hands before preparing food Always wash your hands before preparing food.

  1. Drain the cottage cheese in a colander with a plate pressing down on top for 2-3 hours.  If your colander has large holes, line it with a clean tea towel before you add the cottage cheese
  2. Meanwhile, place the candied fruits and peels in a small bowl with the vanilla extract
  3. Mix together well and allow to rest for 1 hour
  4. Put cottage cheese in blender to whip, then place in a large bowl. Beat the softened butter into the cheese
  5. Heat the cream in a saucepan until small bubbles form around the edge of the pan (Do NOT boil)
  6. Set aside
  7. Beat eggs and sugar and salt together in another bowl with a whisk until they are thick and lemon coloured (a paler colour than when you started)
  8. Slowly add the hot cream to the egg mixture, whisking constantly, then place mixture back in pan
  9. Cook over a very low heat, until the mixture becomes the consistency of (as thick as) custard. Do NOT allow the mixture to boil
  10. Remove from the heat
  11. Stir in candied fruits and set the pan in a large bowl of ice covered with cold water.  This will speed up the cooling
  12. Stir the custard constantly with a metal spoon until completely cool, then mix gently into the cheese mixture
  13. Stir in the chopped almonds
    (Russians have a special mould for this cake, but you can use 3 pint clay flower pot or any firm dish with openings in the bottom. Line the dish with a double layer of dampened cheesecloth, leaving 5cm (2") hanging on the outside
  14. Pour the mixture into the mould and fold the edges of the cheesecloth lightly over the top. Set a weight on top of the cheesecake, put it on a plate (for any drips) and chill in refrigerator for at least 12 hours
  15. Unwrap the cheesecloth from the top and invert mould onto a plate. The Pashka will slide out easily
Russian Easter Cake (Pashka) - print view  Russian Easter Cake (Pashka) - print view

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Comments
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Name: Bojana 4th July 2011
I tried this in Poland and it tastes absolutely delicious. I can't wait to make it myself. Thanks for the recipe.
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