Cranberry Cheese Kuchen
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A sweet cookie-like pastry is layered with tangy cranberries and an orange liqueur spiked cream cheese topping. If you love cranberries, you will love to bake this for a heavenly fall or holiday dessert. The word Kaffeekuchen is German for coffee cake, generally a pastry or yeast dough filled with a fruit, nut, or cheese filling.
Recipe type: Dessert | Cake
Serves: 8 to 10
Cranberry Layer:
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1cup water
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
Cream Cheese Topping:
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Grand Marnier, Triple Sec, or Orange Liqueur
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
Cranberry Layer:
  1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine sugar and water; bring to a boil. Add cranberries and return to a boil. Reduce heat and boil gently for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and cool completely to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare one 9 inch springform pan; generously grease the pan with shortening and dust with flour.
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. With a pastry blender or two knives, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the egg, egg yolk, vanilla, and orange zest. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and stir until the pastry comes together and can be formed into a ball.
  3. With floured hands, press the pastry evenly into the springform pan, patting pastry evenly over bottom and forming a 1 inch rim up the side of the pan. Set aside.
Cream Cheese Topping:
  1. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sour cream, sugar, egg, vanilla, lemon juice, orange liqueur, orange zest, and lemon zest. Beat the cream cheese with an electric hand mixer or wooden spoon until smooth. Set aside.
  2. Spread the cooled cranberries over the top of the pastry to the edge of the rim. Pour the cream cheese topping over the cranberries, the topping should not be higher than the top rim of the pastry.
  3. Bake: Place the pan on a baking sheet, and bake 60 to 65 minutes or until the pastry is brown. The topping should remain creamy colored and not darken. Remove from oven and place pan on a wire cooling rack to cool. Immediately run a thin knife around the edge of the pan, gently pressing into the side of the pan to avoid gouging the cake. This allows the cake to contract away from the sides of the pan as it cools, helping to prevent cracks.
  4. Serve Kuchen at room temperature or refrigerate until chilled and serve. Refrigerate leftovers.
Source: Walter, Carole, Great Cakes, Random House, New York, 1991
Recipe Notes
Pan: One 9" Springform Pan Prep: Greased and Floured Oven Temp: 350° Storage: Cover and Refrigerate

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