Thursday, January 24, 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

31 comments:

Anonymous said...

When my wife makes them, she rolls every portion between cold-water-wetted hands, so doughnuts get an nearly ideal round shape.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Pille, these look irresistible!
Fried dough AND cheese?? I'm in for some! :)

Lydia said...

Oh, I should not read blogs before breakfast! Now all I want is those doughnuts....

Meeta said...

Oh simply delish! This is going to be one killer event - killer on my waistline. I love the curd cheese balls!

Tartelette said...

Oh my! These are just scrumptious! I love that every coutry has some form of cheese donut. Thanks for your great entry!

Evelin said...

nii mõnusalt sarvilised ja ma üldse ei kahltegi, et suussulavad!:) järjekordne toit, mida igasugustes mälestustes alati kaussideviisi tehti. Pealegi mul tuleb meelde 'pontšikulaul' mida kunagi õppisin:)

Hakkasin praegu mõtlema, sinu asendasuvariantide pakkumise peale, et huvitav kuidas oleks hoopis toorjuustuga proovida:/ Eks näis, äkki teen ka sõrmed õliseks:D

Anonymous said...

It looks like delicious,thank you for this nice recipe,I try to cook this and Ihave a foodblog and try to explain about türkish foods yemekoloji.blogcu.com

Annemarie said...

I've never seen these before; does it make the donut ever-so-slightly gooey on the inside? I may have to try them myself to see. :)

Brilynn said...

I so want to participate in this event but I always have such a fear of deep frying things, not for the calories, but for the ability of hot oil to torch my kitchen...

Mel said...

looks absolutely delicious! I think I might try this!

Linn said...

These little doughnuts look scrumptious! They appear so nice and light with lots of little air bubbles - what a perfect indulgence.

Shaun said...

Pille ~ I'm in some "round fried food" phase, for earlier today I was thinking of preparing risotto just so I could make arancini. Now, I think I'll go to the Eastern European deli I know of on the city fringe to see if they have this cheese. If not, ricotta is easy enough to find.

I have been very careless with my diet and yoga (lack of consistency) for months now. I must get back on track...but after I've had some of your curd cheese doughnuts.

K. sounds a bit like my Eric..."ate all but one"...a master of restraint, I see. :-)

The Phantom Chef said...

This looks fantastic, I'll be trying these next week!

Roxy said...

I like them with some lemon zest, it gives them a fresh flavour. x

Cinnamonda said...

These look yummy! And they made me think about the doughnuts my mum used to make when I was little. :) I myself am a little afraid of deep frying with oil, though...
And thank you Pille for visiting my blog!

Susan from Food Blogga said...

I've never had curd cheese balls before, but they certainly look like they're worth extra time on the treadmill!

White On Rice Couple said...

Looks delicious and easy too. We are always having parties and this dish will be perfect for out next event. Thanks for sharing!

Dagmar - A Cat in the Kitchen said...

MMMM, they look so yummy!

aforkfulofspaghetti said...

What a great little recipe! I'll be making those soon, I think...

Anonymous said...

Dancing Doughnuts! I never had doughnuts roll themselves over and over in the oil. I use an electric wok as a fryer, at 375 with about 2 inches (5 cm?) of oil. All I had to do was wait until they looked done to pull them out. Delish! Hubby said he could eat them as quickly as I could fry them. I'm glad your recipe is small.

I added the rasp grated rind of a lemon, and about 2tsp of Splenda with sugar for baking to the dough.

Tasted just like his Hungarian Granny's.

As a note, it took less than 1 hour from start to finish.

deb said...

First of all, these look amazing and I wish I could will them through my computer screen to my plate right now. But second, I have a recipe that involves curd cheese and have been trying to figure out for weeks where to get it. Russian store! My husband is Russian, why didn't I think of this sooner? Worse, why didn't he? Alas, thank you, thank you!

Farmgirl Susan said...

Okay, now that's just not fair. Mouthwatering photos like these should be outlawed. Sorry, Pille, but I'm going to have to report you to the food blog police. ; )

Lore said...

I make a similar recipe, using potatoes instead of cheese. My family likes them very much.
Will try this one very soon!

Tanya said...

Oooooh. I remember these from when I was little. I'd forgotten. Thanks for sharing!

the chocolate lady מרת שאקאלאד said...

Oh, how breathtaking! This looks like it will become one of my favorite things. I do love your work!

Lore said...

Pille, I don't have a blog (yet), but you definitely got me thinking about that.
Ok, I'm all for it! :D My first post will be about those "intriguing" doughnuts and I'll let you know when it will be online.

Pille said...

Anon. – I thought my doughnuts were beautifully round-shaped, too!?!? At least 99% of them :)

Patricia – yep, fried curd cheese dough :) Wait until I start frying cheese doughtnuts :)

Lydia – well, these are dangerously good for mid-afternoon snack as well…

Meeta – don’t you even remind me of the waistline issue…

Tartelette – thank you for hosting such a fun event. I’m looking forward to reading all the entries soon!

Evelin – need olid ühed perfektselt ümmargused ja veidi sarvilised suussulavad pontšikud tõesti. Aga mina pole pontšikulaulust midagi kuulnud???

Anon. – thank you! I’ve got excellent Turkish food in the past – too bad your blog is in Turkish only.

Annemarie – no gooey here – the curd cheese is incorporated into the dough and actually makes the doughnuts really soft and fluffy!

Brilynn – well, just use a small pan and keep the lid nearby (and don’t get the oil too hot!)

Mel – enjoy!

Linn – I certainly indulged on them a lot :)

Shaun – you’re so sweet – making risotto just so you could make arancini (but then you’re arancini recipe is excellent!). A master of restraint indeed :)

The Phantom Chef – good!

Roxy – how do you call them in Romanian anyway?

Cinnamonda – deep frying with oil isn’t so scary after all – it’s just that it uses a lot of oil that you need to discard afterwards..

Susan – but you’ve certainly had ricotta balls before? These would be very similar..

White On Rice Couple – it’d make a great party snack – just provide the napkins!

Dagmar – tack!

Aforkfulofspaghetti – I hope you’ll like them!

Anon. – well, that wasn’t supposed to happen, but I swear, every now and then they rolled themselves over on their own!? Must be some logical explanation that (I was hope alone, for sure:)

Deb – did you manage to find curd cheese from the Russian shop? (An Edinburgh-based Estonian friend called me the other day to ask how to replace the curd cheese there. I told her to go to a Polish shop – there are many, many in Edinburgh – and she said that she had never thought of that. And her boyfriend is Polish!?!)

Farmgirl Susan – oooopps!

Lore – I’m intrigued by potato doughnuts. Now, I wonder if there’s a recipe on your blog…

Tanya – you’re welcome!

The chocolate lady – you’re very kind!

Lore - I cannot wait! :)

Lore said...

Hi Pille! I'm back as promised :). My blog is up and running now so if you're still interested in those sweet potato doughnuts, you'll find the recipe in my first post.

Peabody said...

I could see how these are comfort food!!! Yum!

Dana said...

Wow, these look amazingly good. I wish I could have some right now!

Aparna said...

Your doughnuts look so soft and spongy. Never knew there were so many types of doughnuts.