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.
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Hidden Berry Cream Cheese Torte (cont.)