I very much enjoyed my time in Berlin (and there’ll be another “glimpses” post to prove this), but I am a bit disappointed that I missed out on an experience that I specifically journeyed to Germany for.
You see, partly contributing to my last-minute decision to add Berlin to the itinerary were these two posts by Kristy and Toby of In The Mood For Noodles, which showcased a variety of delicious-looking vegan meals and desserts. I was so determined to traverse myself off to a few of these places but, as I’ve mentioned not infrequently, Germany saw me lose my sense of taste and almost all capacity for cake-enjoyment.
When I finally did regain some sense of wellness and taste, I knew that I really had to go see Berlin’s sights, and not use my last days in Berlin to simply search out cake.
Consequently, I had the pretty-but-not-stellar erdbeer mit buttermilch from a cafe near my hostel and then, from another such cafe, this slice of käsekuchen.
After Camille reassured me in my previous German cake post that käsekuchen is a traditional Bavarian dessert, I did a little bit of googling and discovered that by golly! She’s right! (I should never doubt a Queen of Ganache.) Käsekuchen isn’t simply the German word for the cheesecake found everywhere in Australia (or America), it is a German style of cheesecake. I could therefore count eating käsekuchen as a true travel experience – hurrah!
But what, you may ask, makes this cheesecake different? Well, I’m certainly no authority on the matter, but I’ve heard that the base is often more biscuity and shortbread-like…
… while the filling, albeit still baked, is made with quark rather than all cream cheese. As a result, it is supposed to be quite light in texture and flavour.
Both of these particularities, for want of a better word, appeared in my slice of käsekuchen. I found myself loving the sweet, crumbly, and cookie-esque base, which was suprising as I normally don’t like cheesecake bases and am often tempted to leave their soggy blandness behind.
The actual cheesecake component was definitely lighter in texture than a New York-style baked cheesecake, and while at first I missed the latter’s density and stronger tang, by the end I quite liked the luxuriously silky texture and subtlety of the käsekuchen’s filling. At the very least, one could never call it sickeningly sweet, and it didn’t leave that heavy “oompf” feeling in the tummy that large slices of other baked cheesecakes can.
The people near me in my Berlin hostel lobby probably thought I was a crazy person, what with my taking multiple photos of a slice of cake in a cardboard box, but ah well. Sometimes food just tastes better when you document it.