I love dessert that works equally well as breakfast food. It feels like being naughty, but it’s healthy enough so that you can rationalize it properly.
A cheesecake isn’t really cake anyway- it’s a soufflé. And this one is basically just ricotta (lots of good bacteria in soft fresh cheeses) and eggs (classic breakfast food). So, I had no problems serving this one as dessert, and then eating some for breakfast the next day.
This is the first time I made this one. It’s from Suzanne Dunaway’s No Knead to Knead, and she gets it from Gabriella Piga, her stepson’s mother in Italy. I love that SD is close enough to her husband’s ex to trade recipes. Also, this is incredibly easy and summery.
I didn’t make any amendments to the recipe, but I chose to use ricotta and sour cream, and used the zest from 3 lemons. I served it with the confectioner’s sugar, but it would be equally good with a fruit sauce or cream.
Gabriella’s Ricotta Cake
2/3 C sugar
5 large eggs, separated
1 pound cottage cheese or fresh ricotta
1 Tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp sour cream, crème fraiche, or mascarpone
1 Tbsp grated lemon peel
1/8 tsp salt
Pinch of cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350F. Butter and flour a 9 inch springform pan.
In a food processor, mix sugar and egg yolks until smooth. Add the cheese flour, sour cream, crème fraiche or mascarpone, lemon peel, salt and cinnamon. Blend well.In a large bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry. Fold into the batter. Pour into the springform pan and bake for about 40 minutes, or until the cake springs back easily with the touch of a finger. Let cool in the pan, remove from pan to a serving plate, dust with confectioner’s sugar and serve.