Cocoa Cheesecake

We had a nice little sprinkling of snow the other day, so I took full advantage in my own special way.  In other words, I baked a cheesecake.  I will use any excuse possible to turn on my oven.  I also used it as an excuse to make marshmallows.  As I was listening to the news report on school delays, I thought about how fun it would be to get the kids involved in cutting out the marshmallows and tossing them in powdered sugar then floating them in some warm cocoa after playing in the snow. Unfortunately, my foodie daughter lives in Germany and my son is 24, so he doesn’t get excited about these things anymore.




Cocoa Cheesecake


  • 20 chocolate sandwich cookies
  • 4 Tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and generously grease a springform pan.

Place the cookies in a food processor and pulse until finely ground.  While the food processor is running, drizzle in the melted butter.  Press the crumbs into the bottom of the springform pan and bake for 8-10 minutes.  Cool completely.


  • 1 1/2 pounds Quark
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup cocoa mix*
  • 1/3 cup corn starch
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add 1 pound Quark, 1/3 cup sugar, 1/3 cup cocoa mix, and the corn starch.  Starting on low, mix for one minute, then increase to medium and mix for 2-3 minutes or until fully incorporated.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the rest of the quark, sugar, and cocoa mix.  Mix for one minute.  Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping after each addition.  Add the vanilla and whipping cream and mix just until incorporated.  Transfer to the springform pan and bake for approximately one hour.  The center should be set, but slightly jiggly.  Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake inside for another hour.  Move to a rack and cool completely, then chill for 2 hours or overnight.



  • I cup water
  • 3 envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons vanilla
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup corn starch


Lightly spray a 12 x 17 pan** with cooking spray, line the pan with parchment paper, leaving a bit of the paper hanging over the side of the pan. The paper makes it easy to lift the marshmallows out of the pan.  Lightly spray the parchment paper with cooking spray.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, pour in 1/2 cup water and sprinkle gelatin on top.  Let sit for 5 minutes.

In a medium saucepan, bring 1/2 cup water, granulated sugar, corn syrup, and salt to a rolling boil, and boil for one minute or until a candy thermometer reads 240 degrees F.  Do not stir the mixture while mixture is cooking and be careful.  This mixture is extremely hot, and keep this part away from children.

Using the whip attachment, mix the gelatin for a minute to break up the clumps.

Slowly drizzle the hot sugar syrup along the side of the bowl,  did I mention be careful?

Turn the mixer to high speed and whip for 8-10 minutes or until thick and fluffy.

Immediately pour into the prepared pan, and spread out with an offset spatula.  It will be messy.

Spray a sheet of plastic wrap with cooking spray and press, greased side down, over the marshmallow mixture to smooth it out.

Allow to sit for 6 hours or overnight.

Mix together the powdered sugar and corn starch and sprinkle over a work surface.

Turn out the marshmallow slab and cut into desired shapes using a greased knife or cookie cutters.

Toss with additional powdered sugar mixture to keep them from sticking together.


*I have used both the kind of cocoa mix that you add water and the kind that you add milk.  Both work fine.  The kind you add milk has a more chocolatey flavor, while the kind that you add water has a creamier flavor.  Both are delicious.

**A 12×17 pan makes thin marshmallows.  For thicker marshmallows, use a 9×13 or 9×9 pan.

Cranberry Bundt Cake

Christmas time at the Cheese Shop is a magical time.  One of my favorite things is having all the kids coming Christmas shopping with their parents.  Kids get so excited about the season and the joy is contagious.

Child looking at the cheese
Checking out the variety of cheeses in the case
Daisy at the cow
Every child should learn where milk comes from

Christmas is the laughter of the children, smells of baking, frosty mornings, and warm fires.  Christmas is home, family, faith, and tradition.

Cranberry Bundt Cake

Christmas is also cranberries!  Cranberry Bundt Cake has been a family favorite for several years now.  Quark makes the cake moist and rich, without being heavy.  This is my son’s all time favorite holiday dessert, he has been known to bring home a can of cranberry sauce from the grocery store and hand it to me along with my bundt pan.


Cranberry Bundt Cake


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups Quark
  • 1 can (14 ounces) whole-berry cranberry sauce

Icing (optional)

  • 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 4 teaspoons milk (approximately)
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract


  1. Preheat the oven to 350  Grease and flour a 10 inch bundt pan.
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a small bowl.  Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in extract.
  4. Add the flour to the creamed mixture alternately with Quark, beating well after each addition.
  5. Spoon 2/3 of the batter into the bundt pan. Top with the cranberry sauce. Spoon the remaining batter over the cranberry sauce and smooth to the edges.
  6. Bake for 65-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack.
  7. Sprinkle cooled cake with sifted powdered sugar or drizzle warm cake with icing.
  8. For Icing: combine icing ingredients until smooth, add more milk if necessary to get the right consistency.


Creamy Pumpkin Pie

If you had to choose, which pie is absolutely essential on Thanksgiving?

When I was growing up, we gathered each year for Thanksgiving at my Aunt and Uncle’s house.  The cousins all played in the basement while the adults chatted upstairs.  Then, after our prayer of thanks, we would pile our plates with way too much food and scurry off to the “kids table.”  I couldn’t wait until I would be old enough to eat at the adult table.  Turns out, it was more fun at the kids table.  Isn’t that the way it is in life?  You look forward eagerly to the next chapter in life, then realize that you are already pretty blessed right where you are.


One year my mom was asked to bring “the pies.”  Thinking that it meant ALL of the pies, she churned out seven pies.  Each family also brought a few pies.  At this particular festive gathering, there were 21 people and 22 pies.  We call it, “The Year of the Pies.”  There were fruit pies, cream pies, and mince meat pies, but the pies that disappeared the fastest were the pumpkin pies.


Creamy Pumpkin Pie

  • 9-inch pastry shell
  • 1 1/2 cups Quark
  • 1 tablespoon frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
  • 1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves


Preheat oven to 350° F.  Blend the Quark and orange juice in a mixer on low speed until smooth.  Add pumpkin, eggs, sugar, and spices.  Increase the speed to medium and mix for 2 minutes.  Pour into the pastry shell.  Bake for approximately 1 hour or until a knife inserted in the center of the pie comes out clean.  Cool on a rack for 30 minutes, then chill at least two hours or overnight before serving.  Top with whipped cream if desired.  Makes 6-8 servings.


Three Cheese Pumpkin Cheesecake

A slice of cheesecake

I recently adapted this recipe that was originally published in Country Living.  I love trying new recipes and I was especially excited to try this one.  I made it, then sprang it on some unsuspecting family members and store customers.  That’s a perk, by the way, of hanging out at the Cheese Shop.  Customers and employees are occasionally enlisted to try out new recipes.  They get free samples and I get constructive input.  Definitely a win-win situation!

Three Cheese Pumpkin Cheesecake

I specifically chose a couple of people to try this cheesecake because one of the main ingredients is chèvre.  I chose people who said that they didn’t like goat cheese as well as some who love it.  I must say, the response was completely different than I expected.  I didn’t tell them what types of cheese were in it but asked them to guess.  Everyone LOVED it, but nobody, even the goat cheese lovers, could tell what the three types of cheese were in the recipe.  When I told them the three cheese combination they all responded similarly: “Goat cheese!  That’s what I’m tasting!”

The combination of cheeses gives the cheesecake a luscious flavor and texture.  The creamy texture of the cream cheese combines with the light tang of the Quark for a melt in your mouth experience, then you get a rich finish from the goat cheese.  Quality ingredients are important.  If you are nearby, I recommend heading down to Gothberg Farms for the chèvre.  The quality and flavor are much better than any goat cheese I have had from a grocery store.  John and I used the trip as an excuse for a ride down beautiful Chuckanut Drive on John’s new motorcycle.  I love my job!

Three Cheese Pumpkin Cheesecake

Three Cheese Pumpkin Cheesecake


  • 1 c. granola (no large nuts or raisins)
  • 1/3 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 c. dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. fresh grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 tbsp. unsalted butter


  • 1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 8 oz Quark, room temperature
  • 8 oz. chevre, room temperature
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract


  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Toss the granola, graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and spices together in a medium bowl. Stir in the butter and pat the mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl and using an electric mixer on low, beat together cream cheese and sugar. Add in quark and beat for 1 minute. Add remaining ingredients and salt; beat until mixture is very smooth, about 5 more minutes.
  3. Transfer batter to prepared pan. Bake on a rack positioned in middle of oven until just set, about 1 hour.  Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake in the oven for 1 hour with the door cracked open. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, 4 to 5 hours or up to 3 days. Serve with whipped cream.

Adapted from Country Living

Quiche Two Ways


I recently had the opportunity to go on a weekend trip with Karen Mullen Photography.  She is not only a fantastic photographer and consummate professional, but she is also an excellent teacher.  I’ve been in classes where her students had disparate levels of knowledge, from the woman who just received a camera as a gift and didn’t know anything about it, to the man who photographed professionally but wanted to hone his skills.  She helped each of us and easily switched from teaching beginner to advanced levels.  She also knew exactly what I needed to learn and gave me specific “assignments” geared to my individual needs.


I was so happy with what I learned from her that I signed up for her “Leavenworth Photography Journey.”  If you are interested in photography, I highly recommend going on one of her Photography Journeys, you will not regret it.  She did a reconnaissance before the weekend so that no time was wasted.  We hopped from location to location with a variety of photo opportunities from a waterfall to mountains to night-time shots.  When we got back to the retreat, we pulled out our laptops and she gave lessons in Lightroom (for those who had the program), photo editing, and composition.  In case you are wondering, no, she did not pay me to say this!


I love to cook, so I offered to bring breakfast for the group on Sunday morning.  I chose Quiche since that is such an easy and flexible dish.

Wine Bottle rolling pin
It turns out that the place we were staying in didn’t have a rolling pin. I improvised with a wine bottle and plastic wrap.

The basic Quiche recipe is a blank canvas with endless possibilities for flavor combinations.  With the holidays coming up and overnight guests, Quiche is a quick, easy breakfast or light lunch.  I keep crust in my freezer (or you can buy pre-made if you prefer).  The basic recipe is just Quark and eggs, that’s it!  Then add your favorite combination of protein and/or vegetables and cheese.


Bacon Cheddar Quiche

  • 1 nine inch pie crust
  • 1 pound Quark
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup Appel Farms Sharp Cheddar
  • 12 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

Layer the bacon and cheddar in the bottom of the pie crust.  It will fill the crust but don’t worry.  Whisk together the Quark and eggs and pour over the cheddar and bacon.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 – 50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow the Quiche to rest for 15 minutes before serving or it will be runny.

Zucchini Sriracha and Maasdammer Quiche

-adapted from Will Cook for Smiles

  • 1 nine inch pie crust
  • 1 pound Quark
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon sraracha sauce* (more or less depending on your taste)
  • 1 cup Appel Farms Maasdammer
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen shredded zucchini

If the zucchini was frozen, squeeze out extra moisture.  Layer the zucchini and Maasdammer in the bottom of the pie crust.  It will fill the crust but don’t worry.  Whisk together the Quark, sriracha, and eggs and pour over the zucchini.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 – 50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow the Quiche to rest for 15 minutes before serving or it will be runny.

*Sriracha is a Vietnamese hot chili sauce.  If you can’t find Sriracha, you can substitute your favorite hot sauce and adjust the amount depending on the heat level.

Whoopie Pies

Whoopie Pies

When Elizabeth and I decided to dedicate our September recipes to football season, I asked friends what they would want served at a football party.  I am surrounded by football fans of every age so the response was wonderful.  Friends shared their passion for the game, the camaraderie, and pride for their favorite team.  Best of all, I got some great ideas for what to serve at a football party.  They came with their bling and their appetites, these people are the fan

Shyla's Hands

One suggestion was a sweet treat that is easy to grab and go so I decided to make Whoopie Pies.  I started with a classic recipe but added Quark for extra moisture. I also used Dutch process cocoa and coffee to increase the depth of the flavor and give the recipe a contemporary touch.

Whoopie pie with sprinkles
Adding a sprinkles makes it fun!

Whoopie Pies

  • 1/2 cup Dutch Process cocoa
  • 1/2 cup hot coffee
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup Quark
  1. Whisk the cocoa and hot coffee together in a small bowl.  Set aside to cool.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar in an electric mixer until light and fluggy.  Beat in the eggs one at a time, then add the vanilla and cocoa mixture.
  3. Combine the dry ingredients.  Gradually add 1/2 of the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture.  Add the Quark, then the remainder of the dry ingredients.
  4. Spoon the batter into a large ziplock bag.  Cut off one corner and pipe the batter onto a parchment covered cookie sheet.  I piped it in a two inch line widening it in the center to form an oval.  This makes a about 2 dozen pies, but you can make them bigger or smaller.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until firm to the touch.  Remove to a wire rack to cool.
  6. Spread filling (recipe below) on half of the cookies.  Top with remaining cookies.  Decorate with royal icing if desired.  Store in the refrigerator.  The pies like to stick together so store them in a single layer on parchment paper.whoopie pies

Classic Marshmallow Filling

  • 1 (7 oz) container Marshmallow creme
  • 1 cup vegetable shortening*
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Beat the Marshmallow creme and shortening on medium speed until smooth and fluffy.  Reduce to low and add the sugar and vanilla.  Beat until well incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

*I don’t typically use that much shortening in a recipe but I tried numerous recipes and this is the only one that tasted like marshmallow filling.  Feel free to use a different recipe if you prefer a healthier choice.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Today is National “Ditch Zucchini on your Neighbor’s Porch Day” and I was a victim this morning.  I am truly grateful for this because we love zucchini but I don’t love gardening.

What’s the first thing I did with this random act of vegetable kindness?  I made Chocolate Zucchini cake, of course!  I originally shared this super moist, delicious cake recipe on August 25, 2010 and it’s still a favorite at our house.

Zucchini Love
Here is the zucchini, along with the note that came with it. It makes me very happy!

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup Appel Farms Quark
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 (1 ounce) squares semi-sweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¾ cup semisweet chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease a Bundt pan and set aside.  In a large bowl, combine eggs, sugar, vegetable oil and Quark, beat well.  Gently stir in the zucchini, vanilla and melted chocolate.

In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and chocolate chips.  Stir the flour mixture into the zucchini mixture and pour into the Bundt pan.  Bake for 60 to 70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.  Cool for ten to fifteen minutes on a wire rack, then invert onto a serving plate and cool completely.  Top it with powdered sugar or a glaze.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake
This is the photo from 2010

Lemon Pound Cake with Yogurt Cardamom Sauce

Pound Cake with Yogurt Sauce

I wanted to make a special cake for John for his birthday yesterday.  John is not a fan of birthday cake, especially the cloying sweetness the frosting.  When I make cupcakes, I always set a few aside without frosting, just for him.  This time I wanted something special, but easy.  Half of our Cheese Shop crew is gone on vacation so I am putting in a few extra hours this week.

Grilled Pound Cake is fast and easy to make and it has just the right amount of sweetness.  John wasn’t too sure when I put the cake on the barbecue grill, but he is now convinced that it’s what you need to do to a cake.  Grilling gives the pound cake a nice crunch on the outside while keeping it warm and moist in the center, plus the touch of smoky flavor elevates the tang of the lemon.  The Yogurt Cardamom Sauce was our daughter’s idea and recipe.  The sauce is perfect with the crunchy cake and the floral note of the cardamom adds a lovely compliment in flavor.  Based on those last few sentences, I think that I have been watching too much “Food Network” again.

Lemon Pound Cake

  • 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 8 ounces Appel Farms Quark
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter and flour 2 loaf pans.
  2. Cream together the butter, and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the quark, then add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Beat in the vanilla and lemon. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt.  With mixer on low, gradually add flour, beating just until combined (do not overmix).
  3. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours (tent with aluminum foil if browning too quickly). Let cool in pan 15 minutes before removing from the pan to a wire rack.  Cool completely then chill for a minimum of 30 minutes before grilling.
  4. Cut in 1/2 to 1 inch slices.  Grill over medium heat for 4-5 minutes per side or until lightly brown.   Serve warm with Yogurt Cardamom Sauce (below).

Grilling pound cake

Yogurt Cardamom Sauce

  • 1/2 cup Appel Farms Yogurt (or Greek Yogurt)
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon Appel Farms Quark
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
  • Pinch of salt

Whisk all the ingredients together, chill 1-2 hours.  Both the cake and yogurt sauce can be made the day before.

S’Mores Cheesecake for National Cheesecake Day

S'mores CheesecakeToday is national cheesecake day so I felt it was necessary, mandatory in fact, to make a cheesecake.  I found this fabulous idea by Lyuba at “Will Cook For Smiles” so I couldn’t wait to try it out and adapt the idea to my favorite Quark cheesecake recipe.

I enlisted Lindsey on her last day with us to help me out.  Lindsey made the crust while I made the filling.  According to Lyuba’s directions, you make an extra thick graham cracker crust, then top it with a layer of mini chocolate chips and a layer of mini marshmallows, then pour the filling over the top.  Once Lindsey had the crust ready, I poured in my batter.  Now is when I need to mention that Quark cheesecake batter is much thinner than a cream cheese batter.  As soon as I poured the batter on the little mini marshmallows they began to pop up to the surface.  Lindsey ran to grab a straw and began a rather hilarious game of “whack a mole” or “whack a marshmallow” to be more exact.  It was a losing game, no matter how fast she pushed the marshmallows down, two more popped up to take its place.  I tried cooking it anyway and ended up with a layer of burnt marshmallows on top.  I dumped it and started over the next day without the marshallows on the crust.  This time it worked beautifully!

S’Mores Cheesecake


  • 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 5 Tbsp melted unsalted butter
  • ¾ cup mini chocolate morsels


  • 24 ounces Quark
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream


  • 10 oz hot fudge topping, warmed
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows

Spray an 8×3 inch cake pan with cooking spray, line the bottom only with parchment and spray the parchment.  Or if you prefer, use a greased springform pan wrapped in aluminum foil.**

In a small bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, vanilla extract and brown sugar. Mix very well.

Spread crumb mixture in the bottom on the spring form, evenly, pressing it over the bottom and half way up the sides.

Spread mini chocolate morsels evenly over the bottom.

Preheat the oven to 325̊F  Put half of the Quark (12 ounces), 2/3 cup sugar, and 1/3 cup cornstarch in a large bowl.  Beat with an electric mixer on low until creamy, about three minutes.  Scrape down the bowl and add remaining Quark, beat well.  Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat in the remaining sugar, then the vanilla.  Blend in the eggs, one at a time, and beating well after each addition.  Beat in the cream just until blended, do not overmix.  Pour into prepared crust.

Baking the Cheesecake

Place the cake pan in a shallow pan (I use a 10×2 inch cake pan, you will need something larger if you are using a springform pan) and place it on a low rack of the oven.  Fill the shallow pan with hot water, about one inch up the sides of the cakepan to form a water bath.  Bake 1 1/2 hours then turn off the oven and leave the oven door partway open, I like to use a wooden spoon to prop the door open.  Leave the cheesecake in the oven 30 minutes or until the center is set. Remove the cheesecake from the water bath and transfer to a wire rack.  Let cool for at least two hours then refrigerate 2 hours or overnight.

Flipping the cheesecake

Once the cheesecake is cooled, run a sharp knife around the edges to loosen from the pan.  Place a plate upside-down over the pan and while holding the pan and plate, flip them upside down.  The cheesecake should slide out onto the plate, if not, give it a gentle tap to loosen it.  Remove the pan and the parchment, place a serving plate upside-down on the crust and while holding both plates, flip everything over.

Cheesecake in pan

Spread warm hot fudge over the top of the cheesecake and spread marshmallows evenly on top.

Place cheesecake back in the center of the oven, under the broiler. Let marshmallow toast for only 30-35 seconds. Watch it because they toast very quickly. Take out the cheesecake once marshmallows are lightly browned.

Cool cheesecake completely, cover gently and refrigerate until ready to serve.

**I do not like springform pans so I developed this method that I love.  Feel free to use whichever pan you prefer…I won’t judge.

Mawwiage. Mawwiage is what bwings us togethew today.

Lemon Raspberry Cheesecake Pie

Like the famous line from the movie “A Princess Bride,” marrying into a farm family in a tight-knit community brought a little more togetherness than I expected.  Moving into the little house overshadowed by the main farmhouse where my in-laws lived was a whole different world for me. I was fresh from college with a degree in marketing and business management and for all intents and purposes, moving into my inlaw’s home.  My inlaws are the best of people but it’s still a little unnerving.  In spite of my reservations, I was eager to embrace farm life and volunteered for farm chores.  He didn’t say anything, but I’m pretty sure that my father-in-law looked at my manicured fingernails and was not optimistic.

I started out driving the scraper tractor and was eventually allowed to do a little field work.  Up until 1989, I thought that “harrowing” was an adjective not a verb so when I was told to harrow the field, I may have giggled.  Once John explained that I would not be emotionally tormenting the grass, I gave it a go.  I only harrowed a couple of fields before the farmers in the family concluded that tractor work might not be the best fit for me.  My neat orderly rows gradually devolved into a random zig-zag pattern.  My father-in-law did not appreciate my [ahem] artistic results and my career as a tractor driver ended shortly after it started.  It was probably a good thing.

Lemon Raspberry Cheesecake Pie

I don’t know if my skills in the kitchen are any better than on a tractor, but my family appreciates my efforts exceedingly.  I tend to make a recipe over and over until I get it just how I like it.  It took a lot of tries and failures before I successfully learned to blind bake a pie crust for this recipe.  I made a lot of frisbees before learning to keep the sides from sliding irrevocably to the bottom of the pie pan.  Thankfully, there are a lot of delicious things that you can do with a pie crust frisbee!

Once I succeeded at the pie crust, thanks to helpful advice from friends and YouTube video tutorials, the rest was easy.  I’ve been making cheesecakes with quark for many, many years but this recipe is a fun novel approach.   I brought a couple of these pies to a church gathering and they were well very received.  It’s a good sign if you come home from a church potluck with empty pie pans.

Lemon Raspberry Cheesecake Pie

Lemon Raspberry Cheesecake Pie

Raspberry Sauce

  • 1 pre-baked pie crust
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons water

Mix all of the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil, remove from heat and set aside.


  • 16 ounces Quark
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream

Blend the quark, sugar, and salt until smooth.  Add cornstarch, lemon extract, and lemon zest.  Gently fold in the eggs and cream, do not whip.

Spread the raspberry sauce in the pie crust, then spoon the cheesecake over the top.  Bake the pie at 325 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes or until barely set.

Turn off the oven and prop the door open.  Let the cheesecake pie sit in the oven for 20 minutes.  Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature then chill completely before serving.