Kamis, 24 Januari 2008

Melt-in-your-mouth curd cheese doughnuts aka kohupiimapontšikud (quark fritters)

Curd cheese puffs / Suussulavad kohupiimapontšikud
Photo updated in November 2010

Peabody and Tartelette have told us that it's time to make doughnuts - and I'm delighted to introduce you kohupiimapontšikud aka Estonian curd cheese doughnuts. Kohupiimapontšikud is something every Estonian kid is familiar with - a real, honest comfort food - and there are plenty of adults who have hard time resisting these as well. We know they're not the dessert for calorie-counting and health-conscious modern girls, but every now and then we indulge in them after all.

I made these old-time favourites about a fortnight ago, and although I had planned to eat a couple for a few days there was none left by the dinner time. Granted, my friend Liis and her 18-month old daughter Matilda helped me a lot by eagerly popping by for an afternoon cup of tea and some doughnuts, but K. surprised me by eating all but one when I left the dining room for a few moments later that night ;-) I'm not surprised, however, as these were so soft, so tender, so tasty, so, well, yummy..

Hope you'll make these. You can find curd cheese from Russian and Polish shops or try quark/kvark or ricotta cheese or farmer's cheese instead. And check back with Peabody and Tartelette after February 12th to see all the other doughnut entries!

Estonian curd cheese doughnuts
(Suussulavad kohupiimapontšikud)
Serves about 6

250 grams curd cheese
4 Tbsp sugar
2 medium eggs
0.25 tsp salt
0.5 tsp baking soda/bicarbonate of soda
100 grams plain/all-purpose flour (approx. 150 ml)

rapeseed oil for frying

icing sugar for sprinkling

Using a wooden spoon, mix the curd cheese and eggs until combined. Mix the flour, salt and baking soda, fold into the cream cheese mixture.
Heat about 3-4 cm of oil in a small heavy saucepan until hot.
Take two tablespoons - use one to take a spoonful of dough, the other to 'round up' and push the dough into the hot oil.
Cook for 1-2 minutes, until golden brown, then using a slotted spoon, flip the doughnut over and cook the other side. (The doughnuts will puff up nicely because of the baking soda).
Remove from the oil and place on a sheet of kitchen paper, so drain the extra oil.
Sprinkle with plenty of icing sugar before serving.
The doughnuts are best when still warm, but lukewarm is fine, too.

Similar recipes:
Quark fritters @ Food Bridge