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Polish Grandmother's Cheesecake Recipe - Sernik Babci


Polish Grandmother's Cake or Sernik Babci

Polish Grandmother's Cake or Sernik Babci

© 2010 Barbara Rolek licensed to About.com, Inc.
This rustic recipe for Polish grandmother's cheesecake or sernik babci (sehrr-NEEK BAHB-chee) features mashed potatoes in the crust which is folded over the cheese filling like an envelope. Some recipes are baked like regular cheesecake without the folding. Compare this with sernik recipe, which features a cookie-crumb crust.

If you can't find dry curd cheese, you might want to make your own farmers cheese from scratch.

Here's a larger photo of Polish Grandmother's Cheesecake or Sernik Babci.

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 55 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 55 minutes

Yield: 8-10 servings Sernik Babci


  • Crust:
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose Flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) cold butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 large egg mixed with 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar
  • Filling:
  • 5 large eggs + 1 large egg separated
  • 2 cups confectioners' Sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 pound dry curd or farmers cheese (twaróg or quark)
  • 10 2/3 tablespoons (2/3 cup) butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups unseasoned, cool mashed potatoes
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup orange or lemon zest
  • Crumb Topping:
  • 2 ounces (1/2 stick) cold butter
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour


  1. To make the crust: In a large bowl or food processor work bowl, combine flour, salt and baking soda. Cut in or pulse in butter as for pie dough. Quickly mix in egg-sour cream mixture and 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar. If dough is too soft to roll, refrigerate until firm.

  2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough into a rectangular shape that will come partway up the sides of a 13x9-inch pan. Place the dough in the pan.

  3. To make the filling: Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, beat 5 whole eggs and 1 egg yolk, gradually adding 2 cups confectioners' sugar. Beat at high speed 5 minutes. Add vanilla and continue to beat at high speed until light and fluffy.

  4. In a separate medium bowl, pass the cheese through a sieve and mix in the 2/3 cup cooled melted butter. Add the potatoes, baking powder, nutmeg, and salt. Stir in the zest. Add to egg mixture and combine thoroughly.

  5. Pour the filling into the center of the prepared crust in the baking pan. Fold the excess dough over the filling as you would for an envelope, brushing the edges that will stick together with reserved egg white and pinching the edges closed. Brush the entire top of the cheesecake with egg white.

  6. To make the crumb topping: Mix together 1/2 stick butter, 3 tablespoons sugar, 1 tablespoon vanilla sugar and 1/2 cup flour as for pie crust. Sprinkle on top surface of cheesecake crust. Bake 45-55 minutes or until toothpick tests with no liquid. Cool completely before serving. Store refrigerated, but let come to room temperature to serve.
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