I don't know how about you, but here's quite cold weather and the clouds are grey which is not the best for my good mood. In these times I often remember things from my childhood (okay, I ain't that old but I'm not that young either). This time I remebered an ice lolly I used to love when being a child - it's called Mickey.
From the picture it's quite obvious I'm not gonna show you a recipe for this ice lolly. Nope, it's something similar when it comes to taste and something you can share with others - especially children are gonna love it.
Mickey ice lolly was one of the first ice lollies sold in our country. It's been here for more than 50 years (since 1962) and the most popular ice lolly in the Czech Republic. Mickey consists of two parts: rich quark cheese creamy base covered in dark chocolate glaze. Although, nowadays I bet it has never seen a real dark chocolate but probably just some dark compound chocolate glaze it's still one of those you have to buy just because it's Mickey! The Czech name is Míša (in English Mickey) and it's one of the cheapest ice lollies you can find in supermarket (about 60 cent per one). The word rezy means squares in English. The quark cheese base is still of a high quality containing more than 60% of pure quark cheese with no addtion of vegetable fats.
In fact, these squares were created to represent Mickey in another form - as a type of cake :) That's why you have two dark layers (as is the dark chocolate glaze) and quark cheese buttercream (as is the quark cheese base). This recipe is very traditional in our country and almost every family has made it at least once. Which means it's very delicate and I have to say the taste is very similar to the original Mickey ice lolly.
The quark cheese is the key ingredient in this recipe, too.I don't think you can substitute it, because it has a very specific taste - it's creamy, dry and a little bit sour. The fat content is quite low - from 1% to 10% for 100g of quark cheese (10% fat is in the full fat one). Quark cheese is very typical for Europe and I'm not sure you can buy it in the USA, but I highly recommend to try all your local stores to find it.
Don't hesitate to try it out - it'll disappear within a few minutes!
6 eggs, separated
a pinch of salt
125g caster sugar
2 tbsp oil
30g Dutch cocoa powder
90g all-purpose flour, sifted
6g baking powder
500g full fat quark cheese
250g unsalted butter, softened
200g powdered sugar
160g fine dark chocolate
80g 100% vegetable fat
Batter: Line one baking sheet (aprox. 40x30cm) with parchment paper. Beat eggs yolks with cater sugar until pale and foamy, then add oil. In another bowl combine sifted flour with cocoa and baking powder. Beat egg whites with salt until stiff peaks form. Now add flour and beaten egg whites, 1 tablespoon of each at a time, to the egg yolk mixture. It could seem to be too dry and simply not-working, but don't worry, it'll be okay in the end. Pour the batter on the baking sheet and spread evenly. Bake in preheated oven to 180C for about 10 minutes (or until the tooth pick comes out clean from the batter). Let cool completely and then spread the filling over the top evenly. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (the filling must thicken otherwise the hot glaze will mix up with it and you won't have a nice layer of chocolate on the top). Now quickly spread the glaze all over the filling and again refrigerate for about 3 minutes (do not refrigerate longer, because when the glaze thickens too much it will be difficult to cut it into squares). Cut into squares and then refrigerate until completely thickened.
Filling: Cream together softened butter with powdered sugar until pale and foamy. Add quark cheese and mix until smooth.
Glaze: In a double boiler over hot (not boiling) water, combine chocolate and vegetable fat. Stir until melted and smooth. Let cool for about 2 minutes.
- As I said above, the quark cheese is the key ingredient. For its specific taste it's very hard to substitute it, although, you can use lowe fat cream cheese intead, but the taste won't be exactly the same. (But it'll be tasty.)
- The squares are best the second day, though, they are great even one week after being made.
- I'm not a fan of fake chocolate and this glaze uses vegetable fat which degrades the dark chocolate, but creates wonderfully crispy texture and, well, if you use a high quality chocolate, the taste is great even with the vegetable fat.
- I also sprinkled the squares with more cocoa powder to make it look better (and to add even bitter taste), but it's not necessary (and it's not a tradition, too).
What can I say except it's fabulous? I love this style of cream, because it's not so heavy as usual buttercream frosting and the crispy chocolate layer is very tasty, itself. The sponge cake layer is a little bit dry, but it'll soften overnight and become pretty good :) So my recommendation is let the squares refrigerate overnight, because all the flavours and layers will "combine" and it'll be even better than the first day!