1 3/4 cups
unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled
( 12 tablespoons)
pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup thick jam or 1/3 cup
cream cheese, at room temperature
cottage cheese, at room temperature
ground cinnamon, a pinch
freshly grated nutmeg, a pinch
eggs, at room temperature
powdered sugar, for dusting
- Get 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 paper or a silicone mat.
- Make the crust: add flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor; pulse just to blend.
- Toss in the pieces of butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
- In a small bowl, stir the egg yolk 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 for about 20 minutes before rolling.
- Or simply press the dough into the pan; the dough should come about 1 ½ inches up the sides of the springform; refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Center oven rack; preheat oven to 375°.
- Fit a piece of buttered foil against the crust, covering it completely; fill the crust lightly with rice, dried beans, or pie weights and slide the sheet into the oven; bake crust for 20 minutes, then carefully remove the foil and weights and bake for another 5 minutes or so—your don’t want the crust to get too brown; transfer to a rack to cool while you make the filling.
- Lower oven temperature to 350°.
- Make the filling: stir the jam and spread it over the bottom of the crust—it is ok to do this while the crust is still warm.
- Add the cream cheese and cottage cheese into the food processor; process, scraping down the sides of the bowl a few times, for 2 minutes, until you have a smooth satiny mix.
- Add in the sugar, salt, and spices; process for another 30 seconds.
- With the machine running, add the eggs and process, scraping down the bowl as needed, for a final minute.
- Pour filling over the jam.
- Bake for 60-70 minutes, or until the filling is uniformly puffed and no longer jiggly.
- Gently transfer the springform pan to a cooling rack and let the torte cool to room temperature, during which time the filling will colapse 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 like, dust the top with powdered sugar.