Baking| Quarkauflauf – Quark Casserole with Balsamic Strawberries

“My second favorite household chore is ironing. My first being hitting my head on the top bunk bed until I faint.”
Erma Bombeck

Quarkauflauf, Quark Cassarole with Balsamic StrawberriesHappy Easter!! Sorry things have been a bit slow here on PAB. It’s been a trying past few days, with new and unwelcome terms like ‘CPU throttling‘ denting my otherwise settled life.  H E L P !! Blogging brought new technical insights for me, things I could do well without, especially throttling and WP plug-ins that mess up the database!! I am eternally grateful to my wonderful designer Katie, who is ever willing to help! Sometimes, I feel like I need a 24 X 7 helpline with all this technical mess!QuarkAs I continue to struggle with technical glitches, of course life isn’t going full throttle otherwise as we try to bring up the teens, sometimes unsuccessful even though our intentions are good. As the teen says … w h a t e v a h !!  For times like this, this dessert was comforting, like a ray of sunshine on an otherwise bleak day, a splash of colour to lift the spirits!Quarkauflauf, Quark Cassarole with Balsamic StrawberriesEver since I discovered making curd cheese or QUARK at home,  food has never been the same again. Soft cheeses like ricotta, mascarpone, quark, cottage cheese are easily made at home, and at a fraction of the cost. I did a post a while ago on making soft cheese at home. The one  I tend to make most often is quark as I love how versatile it is. It’s also very simple to make, and offers great pairing with fruit. I used it to make a Quark Cheesecake with Fresh Cherry Pie Filling , and in these no bake Cherry & Matcha Cheesecake Pots here. This no bake  Strawberry and Quark Cheesecake {eggless} is a great one for summer too. QuarkI use quark O F T E N as you see above, and in May 2010 I ‘metMagdalena over this Finish Chai Spice Pulla. On her blog I found a Polish cheesecake recipe, that used a Polish curd cheese, twaróg, and this was what I wanted to make – Kraków Style Cheesecake. My fascination with soft curd cheese continued; I had found a new one to obsess about, and I had found a sweet new food blogger! Quarkauflauf, Quark Cassarole with Balsamic StrawberriesThis is the other rewarding outcome of experimenting with quark & food blogging – ‘food talk‘. It’s wholly satisfying to blog about something I loved to make, and ever more exhilirating to make contact with another food blogger who is large hearted and equally enamoured by the ingredient! We continued to discuss culinary traditions and then one day she sent me a recipe she grew up with as quark is readily available in Germany. My mother would make it once a week and we never grew tired of it, she said.

I’ll share a little background that she sent me: When my mother had finished highschool in Germany, she went on to a school to learn more about housework, including cooking. That’s back in the day, so it does not exist anymore. She had this cookbook that explained every recipe in detail, from the simplest puddings to the most complicated meals. This is where this recipe comes from. My mother has never been a happy cook, so-to-say, but this recipe and roast chicken is definitely something that made all of us happy. That’s what she would make. Quarkauflauf, Quark Cassarole with Balsamic StrawberriesMy grandmother lived on the first floor as this was the house she also grew up in. So, she would cook the rest of the time and I would watch her happily work away in the kitchen. This is all in the small city of Mönchengladbach-Rheydt, right between Düsseldorf and the Dutch borderline, hometown of Joseph Pilates (the Pilates fitness guru). My mom still lives in the same house and when she came to visit us last year here in the US, I had just made Quarkauflauf. She very much enjoyed the leftovers and loves that I now make it for my family … as a special treat every now and then.

Quarkauflauf, Quark Cassarole with Balsamic StrawberriesIt’s been just under a year she sent the recipe to me, and then one day I had fresh quark and wanted to bake with it, and this Quarkauflauf was just the thing . Quark offers a relatively inexpensive and lower calorie option to cream cheese and there’s nothing like  making cheese freshwhen you need it! The original recipe uses cream of wheat, an ingredient not available here, so I googled and the closest I came to was semolina. It worked!!Quarkauflauf, Quark Cassarole with Balsamic Strawberries This is a lovely casserole, like a firm cheesecake. “My girls love taking it to school for lunch … it’s like having cheese cake for lunch 😉 Can it get any better than that?”, Magdalena said, and suggests that it can be eaten hot/warm as well. I wasn’t sure mine was set, so I chilled it for a couple of hours before slicing it. It was nicely set, so will be great warm too. I used seasonal strawberries softened over low heat with brown sugar and balsamic vinegar {some of which I used in Barbara’s Eggless Old fashioned Layered Chocolate Cake}.



Recipe from Magdalena @ Tasty Colours {minimally adapted }Quarkauflauf, Quark Cassarole with Balsamic Strawberries

Summary: This is a lovely casserole, like a firm cheesecake. “My girls love taking it to school for lunch … it’s like having cheese cake for lunch 😉 Can it get any better than that?”, Magdalena said. It can be eaten hot/warm as welt, though I served mine chilled. I used seasonal strawberries softened over low heat with brown sugar and balsamic vinegar

350g quark (skim, though I’ve also used quark made from 2% and whole milk)
80g butter (softened)
80g semolina {or better still, cream of wheat}
100g sugar
1 egg (separated)
1 vanilla bean, scraped
Filling / Topping:
200gms fresh strawberries
1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup granular sugar
1 vanilla bean {optional}
Note: apples, hazelnuts, raisins, cinnamon, or other combinations of fruit + nuts
Breadcrumbs {if you don’t have any, cream of wheat works just fine, too}

Place strawberries, sugar, scraped vanilla bean and balsamic vinegar in a sauce pan, and simmer till it becomes thick and jam-like. Cool completely.
Preheat oven to 200°C.
Butter a medium size baking dish and coat bottom and sides with breadcrumbs or cream of wheat. I do prefer the breadcrumbs as they make the outside a bit crunchier.
Mix together quark, butter, semolina/cream of wheat, sugar, vanilla bean and egg yolk until smooth. Beat egg white and fold into quark mixture.
Fill half of quark mixture with 2 tbsp balsamic strawberries stirred through into baking dish. Top with half the balsamic strawberries.
Now add the rest of the Quark mixture on top of your fruit. Spread this second layer to the edges and smoothen out.
Top with a good sprinkling of breadcrumbs or cream of wheat, again, the breadcrumbs make it crunchier. {I forgot all about this and the specks of butter}
Lightly top with little specks of butter and bake for about 1 hour.
Enjoy fresh out of the oven or even cooled.
Top with balsamic strawberries once slightly cool. If serving it hot, serve the strawberries on the side.
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Also find me on The Rabid Baker, The Times of India


  • Simplyfood
    6 years ago

    Wow this looks drool worthy.

  • shweta jani
    6 years ago

    Hi, Thank you so much for this refreshing summer recipe. Just one glitch, we don’t eat eggs in our family, what would be the substitute for egg in this recipe ? I hope you would let me know. Thank you once again for making my sunday evenings such a bliss with beautiful pictures and recipes : )

  • 6 years ago

    Happy Easter to you and your loved ones, Deeba! What a wonderful Quarkauflauf! So great to find people that enjoy the same things that we do. This is what I like the most about blogging!

  • 6 years ago

    Happy Easter dear Deeba, Have a nice Easter day with your family.
    I love this recipe look georgeous, you know how I love berries! hugss xoxoxo gloria

  • 6 years ago

    The Quark cheese casserole looks absolutely DELISH !!!!

    Feel like diving into one right now…..It has become quite warm here and a slice (or more **giggles**) of the “cheese cake” will be more than a welcoming dessert 🙂

  • 6 years ago

    The idea of taking a cheesecake for lunch makes me very happy indeed.
    Hope you have a wonderful weekend.
    *kisses* HH

  • Wow I’ve been seeing strawberry recipes everywhere. Must really be spring =D! This cake looks lovely, Deeba

  • Hima
    6 years ago

    Deeba – Absolutely gorgeous. Your recipies impress and inspire. If and when I have a food blog up and running, you will most definitely be the reason for it.

  • 6 years ago

    Spring has sprung when we have strawberries at PB:D

  • 6 years ago

    I love all the baked goods here in Germany with quark. I am so impress you mak your own cheese. You auflauf looks deeelish. btw. My German mother in law went to housewife school as well AND I live right near Mönchengladbach-Rheydt. How weird is that?

  • Barbara | VinoLuciStyle
    6 years ago

    I don’t know what quark is but I sure do love how you use it Deeba. Your children are very lucky indeed!

  • Helene
    6 years ago

    Happy Easter! What a delicious looking dessert.

  • 6 years ago

    What a wonderful recipe! I just made mini cheesecakes with my homemade farmers’ cheese today, so this recipe is very timely – it’s so interesting to campare… I will try adding semolina next time. And I am so glad I discovered the link to your cheese making post – will make mascarpone tomorrow :-).
    P.s. those cake photos should not be put in the same place – they are just too appetizing to look at, the ocean level might rise from all the drooling 🙂

  • 6 years ago

    No my daughter would happily have this in her lunchbox for school. She even eats her strawberries with ketchup- the girl is obsessed! Deeba, where did you get that beauuuuutiful knife in the first shot? I NEED it…..!!!

    • 6 years ago

      Strawberries with ketchup? Yikes, your girl is indeed obsessed S!! LOL LOL LOL. I got the knife from a tiny shop in the main shopping road when I was visiting Pune. He had lovely odd pieces but I couldn’t buy any more. It’s one of my faves too!

  • 6 years ago

    This looks absolutely delicious! Happy easter to you and your family!

  • 6 years ago

    This is beautiful and looks so delicious! I have never made cheese before and have not heard of quark. You make it sound so easy to make. I love the idea of being able to make your own as a substitute for cream cheese.

  • 6 years ago


    Sois absolutamente derechos. En esto algo es y es la idea excelente. Es listo a apoyarle.

  • 5 years ago

    Quark brings back memories for me too. Growing up, my best friend was from Iceland and her parents always would bring back tons of it after holiday. This was back in the day when customs wasn’t an issue!

  • 5 years ago

    I guess what they say is true after all, huh. Once you go quark, you never go …oh well, worth a shot!

    Amazing, amazing, amazing blog. Congratulations Mr. PAB!

  • 5 years ago

    Hope you had a lovely Easter, Deeba!

    I wouldn’t mind this in my lunchbox every day! 🙂 It look delicious…I’ve never made anything with quark!

  • 5 years ago

    Your complete explanation is too good. I like this post also.


  • 5 years ago

    Your recipes and blog are absolutely amazing – your’e a very talented cook and photographer – just gorgeous!

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