Cottage cheese is major ingredient in Latvian cuisine. From a side dish extra to salads and desserts. My all time favorite from cakes is “Biezpiena plātsmaize” (Cheesecake). It is mouthful of goodness, healthy and quick to make for whole family. All these ingredients, except lemons are always found in the pantry. Like Semolina, one of the tastiest breakfast porridge is eaten with jam.
During Latvian National Holiday, Midsummer Solstice “LĪGO” on June 24th I chose this dessert to be grand finale. And I was not disappointed even a bit by doing it, it won everyone`s taste buds over including mine (and I am not usually crazy about my own made food).
Follow these instructions and you will master a delightful, healthy and easy dessert to surprise yourself and others with it!You will need two square (9 x 9 inch ) or round pans (9 inch) or one big one (9×13 inch). Whisker (would be better if you had electric mixer, but if not no big deal), oven, kitchen mittens and 3 bowls ( 2 big and one small).
Let`s start, shall we?
2 Lbs Small curd cottage cheese (preferably dry cottage cheese, but regular American is just fine too)
7 Tbsp Sugar
7 Tbsp Sour Cream (small package of 4 oz)
1 1/2 cup raisins
5 Tbsp Semolina
1/2 Lemon zest
Crust: 1 cup softened butter, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 1/2 – 2 cups of flour.
Butter for grease
1 glass of water
If desired for top layer 2 Tbsp sugar mixed with 1/2 Tsp cinnamon.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Place raisins in a small bowl and poor over a glass of water, let them soak. Take ? big bowl and hand blend soft butter, sugar and flour until it rolls in one big ball, put it into the fridge. In other bowl whisk together cottage cheese with 5 Tbsp sugar, vanilla and lemon zest. When it has reached even consistency whisk in sour cream. In a glass mix together left over sugar with eggs and semolina and pour it in the big bowl when ready. Mix well. Drain off raisins and add them to the filling. Taste it, is it sweet enough for you. Take from fridge crust dough and divide it in two pieces if you use 2 pans. Grease the pans with butter. Take dough and evenly spread it in the pans. Pour filling and sprinkle cinnamon-sugar mixture on top. Place it in the oven for 50 min. I did timer for 40min to check prior the readiness with toothpick in the center (if sticks put it back) and color. Cook until it`s golden brown. When ready let it cool for an hour or more. Tastes even better the next day! Safe to refrigerate for 3 days, but it will be gone long before that!
Labu Apetīti! Or Bon Apetit!
The one who washes himself in Morning Dew will stay beautiful and clean for rest of the year! ~ Latvian Solstice Proverb
If a woman doesn`t celebrate all night long Līgo, she will never get a husband! ~ Latvian Solstice Proverb
If Līgo is on Sunday it will be very hard Monday! ~ Latvian Solstice Proverb