In the “La Merhav” newspaper from January 19, 1967, the main headline announced the first shipment of American weapons arriving in Jordan; the second page opened with a report on the heavy bombing in Vietnam; at the end of the newspaper, in the “Wife and Home” section, edited by Tzvia Cohen, amongst the investigative report on the failed end-of-season sales in clothing stores, and an article about innovations and inventions presented at the design exhibition (a mail box from V.C. or a folding and multi-purpose table-bench with a Formica cover – how could it not be Formica?), we found the first recipe published in Israel for a pyramid cheesecake that later became a hit at parties- and honestly? Still is.
Sara Lieberman, a well-known lover of nostalgia, recreated the original pyramid cake in honor of Shavuot and she recommends making it with children “who will perfect their geometry skills and understanding of space in the process”.
Ingredients for Biscuit Pyramid Cake
For the Cake
- Two sleeves Petit-Beurre
- 1.1 lb (500 grams) sweet cream
- 1 cup Sugar
- 10.6 oz (300 grams) 9% white cheese substitute cream cheese or quark
- .7 oz (20 grams) Vanilla Instant Pudding
- 1 cup milk or less, for moistening cookies
For chocolate coating
- 8.8 oz (250 grams) bittersweet chocolate
- 8.8 oz (250 grams) sweet cream
1. Whip sweet cream, sugar, instant vanilla pudding and white cheese in a bowl with the whisk attachment until rich and stable.
2. Spread out a rectangle of aluminum foil about 30 cm long with the short side of the rectangle facing us. Place a slightly smaller sheet of baking paper on top of the aluminum foil - the size of the sheet should be enough for 3 rows of biscuits, with 6 biscuits in each row and the edges of the aluminum foil wider than the edges of the baking paper.
3. Pour milk into a wide, shallow bowl, briefly dip each biscuit in the milk and place on the baking paper as follows: Arrange 6 biscuits along the long side of the baking paper, so that the short side of the biscuits is parallel to the long side of the baking paper (and the long side of the biscuits is facing us). Arrange 2 more rows of biscuits in the same way.
4. Spread half of the amount of the cream mixture and gently spread on top of the layer of biscuits.
5. Arrange in the same way a second layer of biscuits dipped in milk above the cream layer.
6. Spread the rest of the cream on the second layer of biscuits in a rounded layer with more cream in the center.
Create the Pyramid:
7. Gently lift the right and left edges of the aluminum foil and fold them over, so that a pyramid shape is formed - this is easiest to do when you put your palms and forearms under the aluminum foil.
8. Gently fasten the ends of the aluminum foil together and close gently, to stabilize the pyramid. Transfer the pyramid to the refrigerator overnight before coating it. If you are in a hurry or nervous about it holding, you can stabilize it for 3-4 hours in the freezer.
Prepare the Chocolate Coating:
9. Chop chocolate into rough cubes and place in a metal bowl.
10. Heat the sweet cream till almost boiling over a low flame. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let sit for a minute to melt the chocolate. Stir the mixture vigorously until you get a rich and thick chocolate cream without lumps.
11. Open the baking paper and place the cake on a tray, with the foil and paper still underneath (so as not to dirty the plate with ganache). Gently pour the hot ganache over the cold cake to evenly coat the two sides. Return to the refrigerator for another two hours, until the ganache is cold and the cake is firm. Before serving, carefully remove the aluminum foil and baking paper and leave the cake on the tray.