Say cheesecake

Bakeries around the country are gearing up for the holiday, preparing all kinds of sweet and savory goods. Here are some of the best.

Cheesecake 311 (photo credit: Arcaffe (Limor Tirosh))
Cheesecake 311
(photo credit: Arcaffe (Limor Tirosh))
It is said that cheesecake was a popular dish in ancient Greece and then traveled with the Romans to Italy. The earliest attested mention of a cheesecake is by the Greek physician Aegimus, who wrote a book on the art of making cheesecakes.
Cato the Elder’s De Agri Cultura includes recipes for two cakes for religious uses. I wonder when the tradition of making cheesecakes for Shavuot started, but it is definitely one to keep.
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My mother-in-law, who was not the best of cooks, used to bake a cheesecake that is still remembered by my husband’s friends.
It was a classic baked cake with meringue topping, but somehow it only came out as good when prepared in her old oven, and for the life of me I couldn’t get the recipe out of her, which is why even if I do not shy away from cooking complicated recipes, when it comes to cheesecakes I go to the experts.
Oren Becker of the Bleecker Bakery has made a few combinations of chocolate and cheese for this holiday’s sweet line, amongst them cheese mousse on a base of hazelnut crust, an amazing white chocolate and passion-fruit mousse on a brownie base and more (from NIS 59) as well as the classics such as baked sour cream or crumbs cake and a sugar-free one (from NIS 39). Its savory line includes quiches in a variety of flavors, lasagnas and pies (NIS 64 to NIS 72). Kosher, supervised. In Netanya, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Petah Tikva, Zichron Ya’acov, Kfar Saba and Ra’anana.
To find the branch nearest to you go to
Biscotti offers a vast line of cheesecakes as well as quiches and pies in family or single portions (NIS 18 to NIS 138 according to size).
It too offers many classic cakes and sugar-free ones, as well as baked cheesecake coated with white and bitter chocolate to die for, and others. In the savory department it offers a number of quiches such as antipasti and focaccia. Biscotti is also a cafe and can deliver. Kosher. Rehov Hayarkon 67, Bnei Brak, (03) 570-4015/8,
Piece of Cake bakery near the old flea market in Jaffa offers baking with a personal touch. For Shavuot it has launched a vast collection of cakes and pies including its fantastic yeast cheese streusel cake (NIS 39), American-style cake with sour cream topping and French-style cheese pies with fruit toppings (NIS 75 to NIS 85), as well as classic and sugarless versions. There will also be blintzes and other sweet buns, quiches (NIS 22 to NIS 57), a goat cheese and roasted pepper strudel (NIS 45) and savory cookies. Rehov Yehuda Hayamit 17, Jaffa, (03) 682-2163.
Tatti offers a rich selection of breads and desserts for the holiday, including handmade breads and quiches, focaccias and of course cakes.
Try the Brioche with Mascarpone, Emmental and herbs, NIS 29, or the cheese-mix bread sticks (NIS 10) that are hard to stop munching. We also loved the quiche with mushroom, antipasti and leeks (NIS 69). It also offers a variety of cheesecakes and tarts, mousses and cookies. Kosher. Derech Hashalom 53, Givatayim, and Rehov Kiron 3, Yehud. (03) 539-2500.
Patisserie Idelson 10 offers its Shavuot collection only on June 7 and 8. In its holiday collection there will be many different cheese and chocolate cakes and other classic cheesecakes with crumbs or fruit toppings (NIS 120 to NIS 150), as well as krantz ricotta and savory krantz (NIS 45), quiches (NIS 130) and more. Order in advance, (03) 544- 4154, for the Rehov Ben-Yehuda branch in Tel Aviv.
Sugar Daddy is a relatively new patisserie offering an addictive selection of cheesy bread sticks and savory cookies that will ruin any diet, such as feta cheese and sun-dried tomato (NIS 30 for 200 gr.), Emmental with za’atar (NIS 22 for 150 gr.) and ricotta and dates that are just slightly sweet (NIS 28 for 180 gr.). Coffee and sandwiches are served on the premises. Rehov Ibn Gvirol 8, Tel Aviv, 074-702-4068.
Arcaffe offers its patrons a new selection of cakes and pies to eat or take away. The new cheesecakes include many fruittopped tarts and sugar-free cakes (NIS 129 for a whole cake and NIS 28 for a slice).
The chain, which is famous for its breads, also offers for the holiday semi-sweet honey and nut bread (NIS 25), onion bread (NIS 19) and pesto bread with cashews (NIS 26). We especially loved the bread sticks with pesto and sharp cheese, and the grissini (NIS 26 for 140 gr.).
Last but not least, the Dallal Bakery this year offers an exciting selection of briochestyle savory yeast breads filled with nuts (NIS 49), quiches with antipasti and sharp cheeses, or with mozzarella and vegetables, and a vast selection of classic and innovative cheesecakes. The Shavuot celebration starts Sunday June 5. Call (03) 510-9292.
Rehov 7 Kol Yisrael Haverim 7, Neveh Tzedek, Tel Aviv.
Shavuot is fast approaching, and as well as spending time with family and eating cheesecake, the festival is traditionally associated with the mitzva of “bikkurim” – to represent the time when farmers brought the first fruits to the Temple.

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