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This classic German cheesecake “Käsekuchen” is definitely one of the main representative German cakes. While the Black Forest cake for example nowadays faded from most bakeries, this cake is still a common standard.

The most difficult part about developing this recipe was to replace custard powder and achieving the right texture. I replaced the custard powder with some starch, a vanilla bean and some lemon zest.

In many recipes, the cream gets whipped up before it gets folded into the filling. I chose to not do this. If the cake gets to airy, it tastes too light and deflates too much after baking which leaves a dry crust.

It is a cake that tastes way lighter than an American cheesecake using curd cheese. Some sour cream adds a nice tanginess to the cake and the tangerine adds some freshness.

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Classic German Cheesecake with Curd Cheese and Tangerine

Preparation time 30 minutes
Cooking time 55 minutes
Total time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 12


  • Spring form (26cm)


For the Base

  • 75 g butter softened
  • 75 g sugar
  • 58 g eggs (1 egg)
  • 200 g all purpose flour
  • 8 g baking powder
  • additional butter and flour for preparing the form

For the Curd Cheese Filling

  • 125 g butter (melted)
  • 174 g eggs (3 eggs)
  • 39 g corn starch
  • 8 g vanilla sugar
  • 1 pc vanilla bean
  • 500 g curd cheese (0% fat)
  • 225 g sugar
  • 200 g sour cream
  • 200 g whipping cream
  • 1/2 pcs lemon (zest)
  • 200 g supremes of tangerine in syrup



  • 1. Line the bottom of the springform with baking paper. Grease the sides with butter and dust them with flour.
    2. Combine all ingredients to make the dough.
  • 3. Divide into two parts. Line the bottom of the pan with the first half. Create a border 3cm high with the second half of the dough.

Curd Cheese Filling

  • 1. Combine the butter, eggs, corn starch, vanilla sugar, sugar and seeds of the vanilla bean and whisk until smooth.
  • 2. Add the curd cheese, whipping cream, sour cream and lemon zest.
  • 3. Pour half of the filling into the form, distribute the supremes evenly and top them off with the other half of the filling.


  • 1. Preheat the oven to 160°C fan.
  • 2. Bake the cheesecake with the oven door slightly ajar for 55 minutes for example by putting a cooking spoon into the top opening of the oven door.
  • To verify whether the cake is fully baked, shake it slightly. The center should still "jiggle", but not be liquid anymore.
  • 3. Switch off the oven and leave the cake inside, gradually opening the door every 10 minutes.
    If the cake deflates too quickly, the top will not be even.
  • 4. Transfer the cake onto a wire rack, run a chef´s knife around the edge to release it from the form and let cool completely.
  • 5. Store covered in the fridge.