Hidden Berry Cream Cheese Torte

 

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This week’s Tuesdays With Dorie recipe was the Hidden Berry Cream Cheese Torte, which I couldn’t wait to tackle because cheesecake is one of my all-time favorite desserts. The crust is a thick shortbread-butter-type crust (pure heaven for a girl in love with crust!), with a layer of berry jam (I used red raspberry) spread over it, and topped with a cream cheese filling. I can’t even begin to tell you how wonderful this dessert is. I guess admitting that I ate a piece for breakfast would be an indication, right? Aside from being delicious, this also has a very elegant look and would be a perfect dessert choice for a dinner party or special occasion.

Please take note that the top of the torte isn’t supposed to be THAT brown. I have a feeling that the oven temperature is off (I have an oven thermometer on my shopping list), so as a result it over-browned a bit. However, the flavor definitely wasn’t sacrificed – it was still smooth and silky.

I also learned something new while baking this torte. Up until now I had always thought of a torte as a high, layered cake, so I was curious as to why this particular cake would be referred to as a “torte”. So off to Wikipedia I went. I learned that the word “torte” is actually derived from the Italian word “torta” which was used to describe a round cake or bread. So much for my assumptions!

Head on over to Quirky Cupcake and Abby Sweets to see the tortes made by Laurie and April!

Check back next Tuesday to see Perfection Pound Cake.

Last week: Quintuple Chocolate Brownies

Hidden Berry Cream Cheese Torte

(Source: Dorie Greenspan “Baking: From My Home to Yours” pp. 240-242)

For the Crust:
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 sticks (12 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Filling:
1/3 cup thick berry or cherry jam
9 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
8 ounces (1 cup) cottage cheese, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch of ground cinnamon
Pinch of freshly ground nutmeg
2 large eggs, preferably at room temperature

Confectioner’s sugar, for dusting (optional)

Getting Ready:
Butter a 9-inch springform pan, dust the inside with flour and tap out the excess. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat.

To Make the Crust:
Put the flour, sugar and salt in a food processor and pulse just to blend. Toss in the pieces of butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir the egg yolks and vanilla together with a fork, and, still pulsing the machine, add them and continue to pulse until the dough comes together in clumps and curds – restrain yourself, and don’t allow the dough to form a ball.

Turn the dough out onto a work surface. If you want to roll the dough, gather it into a ball, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for about 20 minutes before rolling. Or simply press the dough into the pan. The dough should come about 1-1/2 inches up the sides of the spring form. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Fit a piece of buttered aluminum foil against the crust, covering it completely. Fill the drust lightly with rice, dried beans or pie weights and slide the sheet into the oven. Bake the crust for 20 minutes or so – you don’t want the crust to get too brown. Transfer to a rack to cool while you make the filling.

Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

To Make the Filling:
Stir the jam, and spread it over the bottom of the crust – it’s okay to do this while the crust is still warm.

Put the cream cheese and cottage cheese into the food processor and process, scraping down the sides of the bowl a few times, for 2 minutes, until you’ve got a smooth, satiny mix. Add the sugar, salt and spices and process for another 30 seconds. With the machine running, add the eggs and process, scraping the bowl as needed, for a final minute. Pour the filling over the jam.

Bake the cake for 60 to 70 minutes, or until the filling is uniformly puffed and no longer jiggly. Gently transfer the springform pan to a cooling rack and allow the torte to cool to room temperature, during which time the filling will collapse into a thin, elegant layer.

Run a blunt knife between the crust and the sides of the pan, then open and remove the sides of the springform. If the sides of the crust extend above the filling and you don’t like this look, very gently saw off the excess crust using a serrated knife. Chill the torte slightly or thoroughly before serving and, if you’d like, dust the top with confectioner’s sugar.

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46 Responses to “Hidden Berry Cream Cheese Torte”

  1. April on January 15, 2008 at 8:26 am

    Your torte looks so good!! I will definitly make this again!

    Reply

  2. katie102006 on January 15, 2008 at 8:30 am

    Berries and any kind of cheesecake are a match made in heaven. This looks fabulous! I must try this soon!

    Reply

  3. Aud on January 15, 2008 at 8:33 am

    I’d like a slice for breakfast too… how fast can you get to Philly? :-D

    Reply

  4. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 8:40 am

    Thanks April, me too! I loved this!

    Reply

  5. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 8:41 am

    Katie – you’re absolutely right! The berry flavor and cheesecake went perfectly together.

    Reply

  6. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 8:41 am

    Aud – maybe I’ll bring you a piece for your wedding dessert ;-)

    Reply

  7. slush on January 15, 2008 at 9:19 am

    Red raspberry would have been killer. I may try that next time. It looks fantastic. Your picture is perfect. So glad you guys are baking with me. Its kept me on track, I would have let it slide already! xo

    Reply

  8. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 9:25 am

    Thanks Laurie! It’s so much fun doing this with you and April!

    Reply

  9. Amber on January 15, 2008 at 9:55 am

    It looks awesome. Cream cheese and berries are such a perfect fit. I will have to keep this dessert in mind when I need something to impress.

    Reply

  10. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 9:57 am

    Thanks Amber, it would definitely be a great “company” dessert!

    Reply

  11. Kate on January 15, 2008 at 2:07 pm

    I kinda like the golden brown color of the top of the torte!

    Reply

  12. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 2:09 pm

    Kate, you’re right – it can be a food fashion statement :)

    Reply

  13. megan on January 15, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    I think it looks great. I’d eat a piece for breakfast or anytime!

    Reply

  14. Deborah on January 15, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    Well, I didn’t know exactly what a “torte” meant it was, either!! I always thought it had to have multiple layers to be a torte. I guess you learn something new every day!!

    Reply

  15. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 3:24 pm

    Thanks Megan, I’ll see if I can get you one virtually ;-)

    Reply

  16. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    Deborah – I’m still trying to figure out what is and is not a torte! Or just a cheesecake, for that matter ;-)

    Reply

  17. Your fabulous sister, Lauren on January 15, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    Your photography is impeccable!! Your art direction is amazing. I LOVE IT!! Save a piece for me. I’m going to devour that on Sunday!! Love ya!

    Reply

  18. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 5:18 pm

    Haha thanks Laur, I’m enjoying learning more about food photography. I’ll hook you up on Sunday :)

    Reply

  19. Jessica on January 15, 2008 at 8:44 pm

    That looks yummy! I loove cheesecake!

    Reply

  20. Michelle on January 15, 2008 at 8:46 pm

    Thanks Jessica!

    Reply

  21. April on January 16, 2008 at 10:44 pm

    Hey there! you have been tagged!

    Reply

  22. MrsPresley on January 17, 2008 at 3:01 pm

    yum! i can’t wait to make this!

    Reply

  23. Michelle on January 17, 2008 at 3:04 pm

    MrsPresley – you’ll love it, I promise!

    Reply

  24. eatmedelicious on January 18, 2008 at 9:23 am

    Oh yum! Shortbread crust + cheesecake = perfect. I must try this Dorie recipe! I’d definitely eat it for breakfast too haha.

    Reply

  25. Michelle on January 18, 2008 at 9:26 am

    eatmedelicious – this was the first time that I made a cheesecake with a shortbread crust and I’ve got to say – I think I’m hooked! It’s delicious!

    Reply

  26. Marie Norris on February 17, 2008 at 1:14 am

    Honey, this dessert looks fantastic! I’m sure it was delicious.

    Reply

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  32. Sasha (The Procrastobaker) on August 9, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    Made it, LOVED it, and now theres only one slice left…sad sad times! It was my first ever adventure into cheesecake baking and it turned out so well I cant thank you enough :)
    Adore your blog and will continue to make and admire your gorgeous recipes!

    http://theprocrastobaker.blogspot.com/2011/08/hidden-berry-cream-cheese-torte.html

    Reply

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  36. Katie on April 12, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    I made this for Easter and it was so good and easy to get together. I used 1/2 cup blackberry jam and everyone loved it. I’m going to make it tonight for a girls night tomorrow and am going to try a crumb crust and apricot preserves.

    Reply

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