Cheesecake inspired these mini quark cakes but I switched cream cheese to quark because cream cheese is rather pricey and not so easy to come by in Hungary. However, quark (túró in Hungarian) is available in every shop in Hungary. You can replace quark with cottage cheese to make these quark cakes.
What is quark (túró in hungarian)?
For these quark cakes, I used quark or quarg is a type of fresh dairy product. It is made by warming soured milk until the desired amount of curdling is met, and then straining it. It can be classified as fresh acid-set cheese. Traditional quarks can be made without rennet, but in modern dairies, small quantities of rennet are typically added. It is soft, white and unaged, and usually, has no salt added.
Dictionaries sometimes translate it as curd cheese, cottage cheese, farmer cheese or, junket. In Germany, quark and cottage cheese are considered to be different types of fresh cheese. While in Eastern Europe cottage cheese is usually viewed as a type of quark.
Quark is similar to French fromage blanc, Indian paneer, and the queso fresco/queijo fresco made in the Iberian Peninsula and in some Latin American countries. It is distinct from Italian ricotta because ricotta (Italian “recooked”) is made from scalded whey. Quark is somewhat similar to yogurt cheeses such as the South Asian chak(k)a, the Arabic labneh, and the Central Asian suzma or kashk. But while these products are obtained by straining yogurt (milk fermented with thermophile bacteria), quark is made from soured milk fermented with mesophile bacteria.
Various cuisines feature quark as an ingredient for appetizers, salads, main dishes, side dishes and, desserts. For more recipes click here.
Mini quark cake ingredients
For the crust
- 140 g graham or digestive crackers
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- 80 g butter
- 1 tbsp sugar or sweetener of your choice
- pinch of salt
- 250 g quark or cottage cheese
- 250 ml milk
- 200 g greek yogurt
- 45 g corn starch
- 100 g sugar or sweetener of your choice
- 1 egg
- dried lemon zest or fresh lemon zest check the labels…is it safe to eat?
- vanilla pods or vanilla extract
- In a medium bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, sugar, and salt.
- Stir until well combined.
- Press the crumbs into an even layer on the bottom of the prepared, greased muffin tin. Bake the crust for 10 minutes, until set. Remove the muffin tin from the oven and set it aside. Reduce the oven temperature to 160℃
For the filling
- In a bowl combine the quark with sugar.
- Add the vanilla, lemon zest, and salt; mix it until just combined.
- Add the egg and mix in the greek yogurt. Lastly, fold in the corn starch.
- Make sure the batter is uniform but do not over-mix. Blend the mixture if you wish, for a smoother consistency.
- Pour the batter on top of the crust.
- Bake it for about 1 hour.
One cake provides 102 calories, 5,4 grams of fat, 11 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of protein.