Cheesecake is one of the most popular desserts in Poland, a mixture of ancient Christian and Jewish traditions. Sernik is mainly made from twaróg, a type of fresh cottage cheese, a common ingredient of Polish desserts.
There are many varieties of it in Poland, and this is the simplest and most traditional.
How to make Sernik:
- Place the farm cheese in a food processor with a knife attachment and blend until smooth (about 5-6 minutes) and until most of the lumps are gone.
- Preheat the oven to 165°C/30°F.
- Separate the egg yolks from the whites and place the egg yolks in a large mixing bowl.
- Add the sugar and beat on high for 2-3 minutes, until well blended.
- In a separate bowl, mix the cream with the flour and vanilla.
- Turn the whisk into a mixing stick and add the whipped cream mixture to the egg/sugar mixture and mix until well combined.
- Mix continuously while adding the blended cheese.
- Just mix until blended.
- In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff. Carefully fold through the cheese mixture.
- Make a 10-inch/25-cm springform pan by cutting a circle of parchment paper large enough to cover the bottom.
- Grease the inside of the springform pan with a little butter and your fingers and sprinkle with breadcrumbs. Shake off the excess.
- In a small bowl, mix 1 egg yolk with milk with a fork.
- Carefully spoon the cheese mixture into the pan and spread it evenly.
- Spoon the egg yolk/milk mixture on top of the cheesecake batter.
- Bake for 1 hour. If the top starts to brown, cover with a piece of aluminum foil.
- Turn off the oven and let the cake cool in the oven for about 10 minutes, then open the door and let it cool completely.
Remark: It is best to leave the cheesecake in the refrigerator overnight before serving.