Sunday, 21 September 2014

Currant Affairs!

Torta di Ricotta, Mandorla, Pera & Mirtilli Rossi
Ricotta, Almond, Pear & Red Currant Cake


It's Sunday morning- apparently... but here in Frankfurt, there is no sun to be seen far and wide! Which of course means... on the one day of the week that I indulge and do make a breakfast... I need to make something a little extra yummy to brighten up the day!

So here is something simple, yummy- and even rather harmless and healthy, that is enough to brighten even the dreariest of days! Turn on your oven, go grab a whisk and get ready to enjoy a nice slice of this flour-less ricotta cake... you can have it baked and cooled-off in less than an hour, if you can manage to keep up with me!


This was just a little itty-bitty tester version here- just made for lil' ol' me, using just a small amount of ingredients- just to see if the combination turned-out well... And I think I may well make a full sized version next time- because, yup! I would certainly make this again!

Here we go... in all, I needed 2 tablespoons of fresh ricotta, 1 egg, 5-6 tablespoons of ground almonds, 1 pear, between 150-200g of red currants, a teaspoon of baking powder, a tablespoon of honey, a touch of lemon juice and sugar or Stevia, as you prefer, as a sweetener. I made the flour-free, sugar-free version version... just for the hell of it! I am crazy and reckless that way, sometimes!  


The result was simple, delicious and light... something in-between a moist, traditional almond cake and a cheesecake... if you can imagine that. A little crumbly of course, as it is ricotta after all, but refreshing and fruity with the pear, cinnamon and currants...

Sound like your kinda thing? Good- mine too! So let's get busy together right now!


Peel, core and cut the pear into relatively thin slices, then fan them apart slightly, so that you can lift them on the edge of a knife-blade or spatula later, to set on top of your cake batter.


Put the 2 tablespoons of ricotta into a bowl with the egg, 4 tablespoons of ground almonds, the baking powder, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, Stevia or sugar, and whisk together. This will make a soft-ish batter, so you should not have any problems with lumps- especially as you are using ground almonds and not flour. I used 1 teaspoon of Stevia, so maybe 1 1/2-2 tablespoons of sugar would be right for this small sized cake.


Add more ground almonds to the mix, little by little, until it becomes the consistency of a rich porridge and then add the currants, the honey and a little lemon juice... Stir these in gently using a whisk that looks like an unhappy chick if possible, but if not, fear not- a spoon will do just as well!


Be gentle now and try not to damage those delicate little currants too much!


Pour into a buttered and crumbed cake tray or baking dish and carefully set the sliced pear on top. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake in a pre-heated oven at 180°C for around 40-45 minutes, until it becomes a rich and golden brown.


I should point out that I was in a hurry... I was hungry... and I was impulsive- and got right-in there and enjoyed mine whilst it was still warm from the oven! And I loved it!

But at the same time, I can imagine that if the cake had rested and cooled and perhaps even been chilled... it would have been nicer still!

Just- don't hate me for not waiting!


 I served myself mine up with a little fresh ricotta and currants on the side- just to make things extra yummy. I left my ricotta unsweetened, but of course adding a little lemon zest and sugar would also be mighty-delicious... or a drizzle of honey... or a dusting of powdered sugar... All good ideas, I'd say!

So whichever way you decide to try out your little cake... I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

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