Polish Cold Cheesecake {Sernik na Zimno}

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Polish Cold Cheesecake {Sernik na Zimno}

Sernik na zimno is a no-bake summer dessert made from a type of cheese not available in the US, called homogenized cheese {serek homogenizowany}. Its sweet and tangy, with a consistency of yoghurt. Kids love it. Since I cannot buy that type of cheese here, I’ve recreated the taste of this delicious dessert by using widely available American cream cheese, and I have to say the taste is spot on.

Its creamy and soft, slightly tangy. Strawberries and jello add a nice layer of sweetness, balancing the taste of this not overly sweet dessert. If you happen to have an abundance of farmer’s cheese, it can also be used as the main ingredient in making this traditional Polish cold cheesecake {sernik na zimno}. Recipe for mine here: homemade farmer’s cheese. 

Polish Cold Cheesecake {Sernik na Zimno}

Polish Cold Cheesecake {Sernik na Zimno}

  • Yields: 8-10 servings
  • Prep Time: 15 min (not including cooling)

Ingredients

  • 35 oz / 1 kg of farmer's or plain cream cheese
  • 2 envelopes (0.25 oz each) of unflavored gelatin + 1 cup of hot water
  • 1 box (3oz) of lemon jello + 1 cup of hot water
  • 1⁄4 c / 30 g of powdered sugar
  • Vanilla wafers (round vanilla cookies)
  • Fresh strawberries, raspberries or other summer fruit
  • 2 boxes (3 oz each) of strawberry jello
  • Additionally:
  • 9 inch / 23 cm or bigger round spring form pan

Instructions

  1. Leave cream cheese out to come to room temperature. In the mean time, dissolve 2 envelopes of gelatin in 1 cup hot water, and lemon jello in 1 cup of hot water (that's half the water the recipe on the box calls for). Set aside to cool.

  2. When cheese is ready, place in food processor and process for about 2 minutes. Add both gelatin and jello a little bit at a time. Keep processing until all lumps dis- solve (about 2 minutes). Add sugar and process some more until combined.

  3. Separate the walls of the spring form from the bot- tom. Line just the bottom with parchment paper, and secure the paper with the spring form walls. Cover the bottom with vanilla wafers. Pour cream cheese mixture into the pan. Refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours.

  4. Prepare strawberry jello with half the water the rec- ipe on the box calls for—1 cup of water for each box. This means you will end up with 2 cups of jello as we're using two boxes. Let cool a bit.

  5. Wash and dry fresh berries and cut into smaller piec- es, if needed. Arrange on top of set cheese mixture. Pour cooled jello over strawberries and refrigerate until cake sets (preferably overnight). Serve cold.

My mom made sernik na zimno for my birthday a lot when I was a child, and I love to do that for my daughter too. It’s a great summer cake, served cold will help cool off on a hot summer day.

Smacznego!

Anna

ps. check out recipe for traditional cheesecake here and here

Polish cold cheesecake {sernik na zimno}

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16 Comments

  1. I’m the lucky neighbor who sometimes gets to taste test these recipes, which have all been incredible so far. Anna knows I have a sweet tooth and she surely won us over with this cheesecake. My husband and I were thrilled and both said it was the best cheesecake we have ever had. Good thing we are smart and saved the second piece for tomorrow! Keep the recipes coming Anna ☺️

  2. So excited you posted this! Sernik na zimno has been the favorite dessert of my childhood! I have been wondering how to recreate this since, as you mentioned, serek homogenizowany is not available in the US. Can’t wait to make it this weekend!

  3. Anna, I am looking for a recipe my grandmother made. It is a pineapple cheesecake.The pineapple is mixed in with the cheese filling. It is a heavy, thick cheese cake. Have you ever made one like that? Would love to have a recipe for that cheesecake. Thanks, love you sight and your recipes. Keep them coming. Ginger

  4. Hello Annia, I tried this recipe just today. The vanilla wafers that were to line the pan all floated up to the top when I poured in the cream cheese/jello mix. I haven’t as yet tasted the sernik because it’s firming in the fridge. Since the wafers are all on top, I won’t be able to do the fruit topping. I would love to hear how you keep the wafers down.

    Best regards,
    Ewa

    1. Hi Ewa,
      sorry to hear the wafers are floating up to the surface. Are you sure of the correct amount of liquid added to to the jello/gelatin. The cheese/jello mix should be pretty thick, there is no way for the wafers to float through it.

  5. Hi Ginger,
    In Finland we make baked cheesecakes for Easter with farmer’s cheese (tworog) with canned peaches, abricots or ananas in the filling and usually vanilla. Maybe your Granny’s cake was something like that. Yellow is one of the colours of Easter and the fruit should remind of egg yolks among egg whites.

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