Cakes, Cakes and Desserts, Cheese, Recipes

Cottage Cheese and Almond Cake with Chocolate Glaze

As much as I love cheese cakes, most of the traditional ones are way too heavy for my taste, and I always try to find some tasty alternatives for them.
This time, I chose cottage cheese instead of cream cheese, and was looking for some inspiration over the net. I’ve discovered a Swedish cottage cheese cake, named Ostakaka, that uses rice flour and almond extract in the batter, along with heavy cream. As I didn’t have rice flour, nor heavy cream, at hand, I’ve decided to simply create my own recipe, with the cottage cheese and almond combination in mind – and ended up with the following gluten-free cake.
In order to enhance the almond flavor and aroma, I’ve decided on adding a larger amount of almond flour to the batter, along with cornstarch, instead of rice flour. This gave the cake wonderful texture and flavor. Instead of heavy cream, I used sour cream, which added a nice subtle acidity to the cake. I also added some golden raisins to the batter, simply because I love raisins in cheese cakes.
Another addition I’ve decided on was, to top the cake with chocolate glaze. This somewhat bitter chocolate glaze gave the cake the right balance, both in flavor and color.
Despite all of these additions, the cake is still substantially less heavy, and less sweet, than traditional cheese cakes, yet, at the same time, it is just as rich and flavorful. Try it and enjoy.

Makes: 12-14
Prep time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 1 hour
Chilling time: overnight
Cooking time for the chocolate glaze: 10 minutes

For the raisins:
½ cup golden raisins
2 Tbs cornstarch
For the batter;
1 cup almond flour
1 cup sugar
½ cup cornstarch
¼ tsp salt
24oz (680 grams) small curd cottage cheese 4% fat
¾ cup sour cream
2 L eggs
1 tsp vanilla
A few drops pure almond extract
For the glaze:
4 Tbs milk
4 Tbs sugar
4 Tbs dark cocoa powder
4 Tbs (2 oz, 60 grams) butter, at room temperature

  1. Preheat the oven to 320F (160C). Line a 10.2” (26cm) baking pan with baking paper.
  2. In a small bowl, mix the raisins with the cornstarch, and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the almond flour, sugar, cornstarch and salt. Using a hand blander, blend all to a fine powder.
  4. Add the cottage cheese, sour cream, eggs, vanilla and almond extract. Blend with a hand blender, to a fairly smooth, but still a bit lumpy, mixture.
  5. Switching to a spatula, mix in the raisins, and pour the batter into the lined pan.
  6. Bake for 1 hour, until the cake is set and the edges are golden. Turn off the oven, but leave the cake in it for 1 hour. Take out and let cool to room temperature.
  7. Place the cake in the fridge and let cool completely. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and keep in the fridge overnight.
  8. The glaze: mix the milk, sugar and cocoa powder in a small pot. Cook over medium-low heat until the sugar dissolves. Add the butter and cook for 1-2 minutes, mixing constantly, until an even glaze is formed. Let cool a bit, mix well and pour over the cake. Place in the fridge until the glaze is set.
  9. Using the baking paper, carefully lift the cake from the pan onto a cutting board. With a large sharp knife, cut into sections, and serve at room temperature.
appetizer, Brunch, CONDIMENTS, Recipes, Sauces, Seafood, Vegetables

Brown Butter Scallops with Red Pepper- Orange Sauce, Fresh Asparagus and Almonds


Fresh asparagus season is always a reason for celebration. The fresh crispy green stems are delightful on their own, and even more so, when served with different ingredients.
In the following tasty and colorful dish, I’ve paired some simply steamed asparagus with lightly pan-fried scallops, and served both with red pepper-orange sauce and roasted almonds. This combination of ingredients worked amazing well together. Continue reading “Brown Butter Scallops with Red Pepper- Orange Sauce, Fresh Asparagus and Almonds”

appetizer, Brunch, Recipes, Salad, Seafood

Warm Octopus, Beans and Fennel Salad


Octopus has a unique texture, much “meatier” than that of its’ relative the squid. It requires a longer blanching and cooking time, which is why I don’t often use it.
However, as I’ve read somewhere that when it is blanched, cut into smaller pieces, frozen and thawed, it requires much shorter cooking time – I’ve decided to give this option a try. Continue reading “Warm Octopus, Beans and Fennel Salad”

Beef, Cheese, Entree, Meat, Recipes, Sauces, Uncategorized

A Fairly Low-Fat Moussaka


Moussaka is a great Greek dish, of layered potatoes, fried eggplants and cooked meat, topped with a thick layer of either Béchamel sauce (milk based sauce, thickened with flour), or Mornay sauce (Béchamel sauce with cheese), creating a highly delectable and tasty combination. Continue reading “A Fairly Low-Fat Moussaka”

appetizer, Brunch, Cakes and Desserts, fruit, Recipes, Snack

Mini Filo Shells with Pears, Dried Cranberries and Pistachios


Having a box of filo pastry shells in the freezer, makes it extremely easy to prepare sweet or savory tasty finger food. All that is needed is to quickly crisp the shell in a toaster oven, and fill them with whatever filling you have in mind. Continue reading “Mini Filo Shells with Pears, Dried Cranberries and Pistachios”

appetizer, Brunch, Chicken, Food, Recipes

Crispy Dry Rub Roasted Chicken Wings


Even though I’m far from being interested in any competitive sport, Super Ball Sunday is still a good reason to have chicken wings. Continue reading “Crispy Dry Rub Roasted Chicken Wings”

Brunch, Cakes, Cakes and Desserts, Cheese, fruit, Recipes

Swirl Sour Cream Cake with Dried Fruit and Walnuts


The following swirl cake is a wintry version of a summery fresh fruit cake I have posted a few years ago. Continue reading “Swirl Sour Cream Cake with Dried Fruit and Walnuts”

appetizer, breakfast, Brunch, Cheese, Dips, Food, Recipes

Caldo Godro – Sephardic Cheese and Tomato Paste Dip


Caldo godro is a Sephardic term in Ladino (Judeo-Spanish), used to describe a warm (=caldo), thick (=godro) broth, which is actually more of a warm dip than a broth. Continue reading “Caldo Godro – Sephardic Cheese and Tomato Paste Dip”

appetizer, Bakes, Brunch, Cheese, Entree, Recipes

Flourless Mushroom and Cheese Bake


After all the fairly heavier holiday season’s dishes, I felt it was time for some lighter dishes, yet, at the same time, filling and warming. Continue reading “Flourless Mushroom and Cheese Bake”

appetizer, Brunch, Cheese, CONDIMENTS, Food, fruit, Recipes

Baked Camembert Cheese with Cherry-Kumquat, Ginger and Brandy Jam

Baked white rind cheese, such as Camembert or Brie, is one of the easiest, yet most festive dishes for a relaxed entertainment. Baking the cheese turns it even creamier, enhances its flavor, and keeps it at the perfect texture for serving with tasty additions, such as crackers and fruits. The pairing of delicately salty cheese and sweetish/aromatic additions is hard to resist. Continue reading “Baked Camembert Cheese with Cherry-Kumquat, Ginger and Brandy Jam”

appetizer, Bread, Brunch, Cheese, Food, Recipes, Sauces, Vegetables

Crispy Spelt and Semolina Pizza with Cherry Tomatoes Sauce

Crispy Spelt and Semolina Pizza Ronit Penso

I don’t often follow recipes to the letter, mine included. However, one recipe that I don’t change is the following pizza dough, which I’ve created years ago, and keep preparing it without change. As I prepared it again this week, I’ve realized it’s been quite a few years since I’ve posted the recipe for it, and thought it would be a good idea to re-post it. So, here it is once again. Try it and Enjoy! Continue reading “Crispy Spelt and Semolina Pizza with Cherry Tomatoes Sauce”