The following pancakes are quite different than the more familiar American pancakes, as their main ingredient is curd cheese, rather than flour.
Known as Syrniki, or Tvorozhniki, in Russia, and in other East European countries, these pancakes are a popular dish, served mostly for breakfast, or as a light dessert for lunch. They are mildly sweet, and usually topped with cherry confiture, and served with sour cream on the side.
There are many varieties to these tasty pancakes: some are flatter than others, while others are more plump and thicker, as the version I have here. Some are plain, while others include. raisins, or other dried fruits, and some use semolina instead of flour.
Yet, the cheese in all these varieties is a grainy curd cheese, known in the US as “Farmer cheese”. It has a texture that is quite similar to that of Ricotta cheese, but is drier and has tangier flavor.
The pancakes are high in protein and contain a fairly small quantity of flour, so they can be easily adapted to gluten free diet, if needed.
As Hannukah holiday starts today, these pan-fried pancakes are perfect for serving as a nice addition to the traditional savory potato-onion Latkes.
These pancakes will delight anyone who loves sweet cheese dishes, and can be served as a tasty snack any time of the day. Try them and enjoy.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Frying time: 15 minutes
¼ cup golden raisins and/or dried cranberries (optional)
1 package (15 oz (425 grams)) Farmer cheese
1 L egg
1 L egg yolk
¼-½ cup sugar
½ tsp vanilla
A few drops lemon oil (optional)
¼ cup flour + for coating
Oil for frying
- If using raisins/dried cranberries – place them in a small bowl and top with boiling water. Let stand for 5 minutes, then drain.
- In a medium bowl, mix the cheese with all the rest of ingredients. Add the drained raisins/dried cranberries, if using, and mix well.
- Form 2-3 Tbs size patties from the mixture, and dredge them in a bit of flour.
- Heat oil for shallow frying in a medium pan over medium-high heat. Lower the heat to medium and fry, a few at a time, until golden-brown on both sides. Place on paper towels, to absorb extra oil. Halfway through, clean the pan and use fresh oil, to avoid bitter burnt flour flavor.
- Serve warm, with sour cream and cherry confiture, or simply dusted with powdered sugar.