11 hours ago
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Why do I say this cake is "ridiculous"?
Because it falls under the SO ridiculously good category.
I know you don't need another luxurious cake to bake during the hoildays, and right before we set ourselves up for New Year's resolution failure, but some of you may be skinny or looking to gain some extra weight this holiday season.
Maybe you have some teenage boys who need to pack on some pounds for the cold winter months ahead; could be you have a lot of leftover ricotta cheese from your Christmas lasagne; or maybe you just LOVE a ricotta cake, like me.
I adore this cake. It's worth every calorie.
So just have one slice.
I'm doing a rare Saturday post, just in case you need another dessert for your menu.
You have 10 days till Jan. 2, diet day.
Please do not skip the raisins in this recipe, they do something wonderful to this simple cake.
Ricotta Pound Cake (try not to read the word "Pound"), adapted from Gina DePalma's Dolce Italiano
1 1/2 cup flour (the author uses cake flour, I use All Purpose flour)
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups fresh whole-milk ricotta
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 cups raisins
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp orange zest
confectioner’s sugar, for dusting
Preheat oven to 350F degrees and position a rack in the center. Grease a 9-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray or butter, dust it with flour, and tap to knock out the excess.
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter, ricotta, and sugar on medium speed until smooth and light, about 2 minutes.
Beat in eggs, one at a time, scraping down sides of the bowl after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract, lemon zest and raisins. On low speed, beat in dry ingredients to combine them, scrape down sides of the bowl, and beat batter for 30 seconds on medium speed.
Pour batter into prepared pan and use a spatula to smooth the top. Give the pan a few gentle whacks on the counter to remove any air pockets.
Bake cake for 15 minutes at 350F, then turn the pan 180 degrees to ensure even browning. Lower the temperature to 325F degrees and continue baking until the cake springs back lightly when touched, the sides have begun to pull away from the pan, and a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, about 40-45 minutes more. (Mine took 1 hour).
Allow cake to cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then carefully invert it onto the rack to cool completely. Dust cake lightly with confectioners sugar before serving. Best served the day after baking.
I have a lot of favorites, but this is truly the one.
Merry Christmas and Happy Cooking!