There are so many versions of Lemon and Ricotta cake out there that I was reticent about adding another. This one, I can assure you, will go straight into the hand written sepia toned exercise book that I reserve for very good cakes. The recipe includes 4 lemons, and the batter is lightened by 6 eggs, the whites whipped and folded through at the end. It is an expensive cake but then it serves around 10 people, or two greedy people who eat it every day for dessert and afternoon tea. When served hot, it resembles a lemon delicious pudding. When served cold, it becomes more like a lemon cheesecake. It also keeps well. In summer, store the cake in a container in the fridge. Buonissimo e Molto Siciliano.
Torta di Limone, Ricotta e Mandorle, Lemon, Ricotta and Almond Cake
- 250 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 250 g caster sugar
- 6 free range eggs, separated
- 250 g almonds, ground
- 75 g self-raising flour
- 1 pinch of salt
- zest of 5 organic lemons and juice of 4 organic lemons
- 400 g fresh ricotta
Preheat the oven to 180°C (Gas Mark 4).
Butter and paper a 25 cm round springform cake tin. Beat the butter and sugar in an electric mixer until very light and fluffy. With the motor running, add the egg yolks, one at a time, until all are incorporated.
Combine the ground almonds with the flour, salt and lemon zest. Fold into the batter.
Whisk the lemon juice with the ricotta until light and airy.
Fold into the cake batter.
Beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Fold them carefully into the batter.
Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin and bake for 50 minutes. Test by inserting a skewer into the cake. It should come out clean when cooked through.
Remove the cake from the oven and turn it out onto a cake rack to cool. It will remain moist for a few days. Store in the fridge in warm weather.
From Four Seasons, Manuela Darling-Gansser, Hardie Grant Books.
And Manuela’s great food and travel blog can be found here.