The Romanian Easter Cooking Series (2) Pască

  • Difficulty: Easy to medium
  • Estimated cooking/prep time: 1-1.5hrs (with 12h overnight rest)
  • Cuisine: Romanian

The second experiment we tried this Easter was to cook a traditional Romanian Easter desert, which is called ‘Pască’ – even the name resembles the Romanian word for Easter, which is ‘Paște’.

This is a sweet cheese-based recipe, which you can bake as it is, or inside a nice ‘cozonac’ dough, if you might recall our cozonac recipe (link here).

Again, we were quite busy this Easter, so we opted for the easiest approach, and what a result! It only took a few minutes to prepare, and we loved it so much we finished it in less than a day.

For this, you will need:

  • 275g ricotta cheese (you can put a bit more if you enjoy it!)
  • 3 eggs
  • 60g sugar
  • 10g vanilla sugar or 10ml vanilla essence (or any other vanilla alternative you might have; in Romania, vanilla sugar and vanilla essence are the staples of baking). Maple syrup is a nice alternative, but it doesn’t have that nice vanilla scent, which is essential in my opinion for this recipe!
  • 175g sour cream
  • 100g room temperature butter
  • 50g raisins (or more if you love raisins!)
  • 5 tbsp strong flour
  • 3 tbsp plain flour (flour quantities may vary, see below)

As for the recipe, it is definitely beginner friendly:

Start by beating the eggs with the sugar and vanilla, and then break all the ricotta cheese in the mixture, until it is well integrated.

After the cheese, add in the butter (a bit of muscle work is needed here if the butter is not warm enough!), sour cream and raisins.

For the two steps above, take your time, don’t throw everything in there at once, mix slowly and add small quantities at a time, so that they can mix thoroughly.

Add in the raisins and keep mixing!

Add the flour, one tbsp at a time – I recommend starting with 3 tbsp of strong flour and 2 tbsp of plain flour, then add one of each at a time until the mixture resembles something a bit less consistent than pancake batter – It needs to be a bit runny, but still thick enough that it doesn’t look like soup.

Butter/oil up a cake tin, brownie tin, or any other of your favourite baking tray that is tall enough to accommodate a cake batter. The batter should be about 5-10cm thick depending on the size of your tin, but definitely not more or else it won’t cook properly, and only just a bit less, or it will be too hard and/or dry – ours was a bit smaller actually, but still worked out!

Preheat your oven to 160 degrees Celsius and cook it for about 40-45min or until the top becomes brown (remember my tips about how every oven is different and cooking times are only a recommendation, not a requirement!)

Take it out of the oven and let it cool overnight, and then enjoy!

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