This Lemon Ricotta Cake is a simple home classic. Stir together any where anytime no tricks required. It’s really very easy, moist and full of lemony goodness.
Stir together Lemon Ricotta Cake
Everyone needs an easy cake up their sleeve.
This is one for you. It makes a great dessert, perfect to share as a treat and can be dressed up to present to someone as a celebration cake. It has it all.
It’s essentially a loved Italian style cake. It’s not light and fluffy. It’s more of a moist gnarly kind of a cake that that simply demands to be eaten
Serve it simply with icing sugar if you like, but oh dear, it is good with a lemon glaze and much much better with some whipped ricotta cream.
What is Ricotta Cheese?
Ricotta is a fresh cheese. It originates in Italy, but it’s so versatile it can be found all over the world now. It is made from whey leftover from other cheesemaking. It can be made from any kind of milk at all cow, sheep, goat, water buffalo, even camel.
Ricotta is creamy, milky but still fresh and light. It’s versatile and can be eaten fresh with savoury or sweet ingredients. So delightful baked, made into sweet or savoury dumplings, gnocchi or fritters. I like to whip it up with a bit of cream to eat with cakes and doughnuts. Oh my God, I am craving cake now.
Baking and cooking with ricotta ensures that the goods are moist and creamy. It doesn’t keep for long. After a week it starts to lose water and then starts to sour a bit.
What kind of Ricotta should I buy?
Ricotta is a fresh cream. The best ricotta to buy is from the deli section of the supermarket or the cheese shop. In Australian shops and supermarkets, it is easy to buy a 1 or 2 kg basket. This is what I usually buy and why I often have lots left to make this cake!
Packed Ricotta is only for emergencies. Try not to buy those pots you can buy in the supermarket section. It has a grainy texture. Use it only if you can’t buy fresh.
Tips to make this Lemon Ricotta Cake easy
- Use nice fresh creamy ricotta
- Mix the wet ingredients and flavours together well before adding the flour
- Overmixing the cake once the flour is added can make it a bit tough, so once the flour is added FOLD it through
- If your cake cooks too quickly on the top cover with foil.
- Cooking time of 50-60 minutes will vary depending on the oven. test with a skewer.
- You can make this cake in all kinds of shapes. Try a bundt tin or large loaf tin too.
- The whipped ricotta cream is not sweet. Don’t be tempted to add more sugar. When served with the glaze the sweetness level is perfect.
- Serve this cake simply sprinkled with icing sugar if you prefer.
Try these ricotta recipes by clicking on the links below :
- The ingredients. Ricotta, eggs, sugar, lemon and zest, oil, baking powder and flour
- Mixing the ricotta with the sugar and wet ingredients
- Fold through the flour till it is just incorporated
- Pour into a greased and lined 23 cm (10 inch) tin
If you love this recipe please share on Pinterest or post a picture and let let me know on instagram @mykitchenstories
Lemon Ricotta Cake
- 200 ml oil 3/4 cup
- 2 whole eggs large
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest finely grated
- 40 ml lemon Juice 2 tablespoons
- 250 gm fresh ricotta
- 350 gm caster sugar 1 3/4 cup
- 300 gm plain flour 2 cups
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 40 ml lemon Juice
- 200 gm icing sugar 1 cup
Chocolate Glaze- for alternative
- 100 gm dark chocolate chopped
- 60 ml cream
- 250 gm ricotta
- 1 tablespoon pure icing sugar sifted
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 250 gm cream full fat or thickened (1 cup)
- Preheat the oven to 170 deg C or around 340 F. Spray and line a 20-24 cm round tin or a bundt tin. The smaller tin will make a deeper cake.
- Put the ricotta, eggs, oil, zest, juice and sugar into a bowl and mix with a whisk to break up the cheese and combine everything. it will look thick and smooth with a few ricotta lumps here and there.
- Set the whisk aside. Mix the flour and baking powder together well then fold this into the ricotta mixture with a spatula.
- Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake 50- 60 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. The baking time will vary depending on your oven.
To make the lemon glaze.
- Put 1 tablespoon of juice into a bowl then sift over the icing sugar and mix till smooth. Use the additional juice if you would like a slightly thinner icing. But be careful, it's best to mix and stand as the sugar keeps absorbing the juice.
- Heat the cream in a small pot, till very hot but not boiling Take off the heat and add the chopped chocolate, and stir till smooth.
- Put the cream, ricotta, icing sugar and vanilla into the bowl of a mixer and beat till light and fluffy and soft peaks form. Chill for 10 minutes before using. Cut the cake in half and fill with the ricotta. Spread the lemon glaze on the top.
Add 1 teaspoon vanilla for extra flavour if you like
Mix the wet ingredients and flavours together well before adding the flour
Overmixing the cake once the flour is added can make it a bit tough, so once the flour is added FOLD it through
If your cake cooks too quickly on the top cover with foil.
The baking time will vary depending on your oven. A fan forced oven will be the quickest. A lower temperature of 160 C would also work for this kind of oven. Use a skewer in the middle after 40 minutes to test if it come s out clean. Then test again at 10 minute intervals. Do not be afraid to give the sides of this cake a little bit of a scrape with a knife if it colours a little too much for you. Just like toast it will lighten up and present well.
The Story of Life by the Lake
I once worked for a travel company as a “cook”. We were posted to countries within Europe, with varying degrees of accommodation and standards of kitchens. I have never done an organised tour and I was unaware that a lot of the “cooks” who applied for jobs were often ex-passengers who had been around the circuit, assessed the standards and applied to be posted in their favourite cities.
I’d finished my culinary training and worked in all kinds of places including a ski resort in Australia as a breakfast cook, travelled to Bali , now I was in Europe, looking for a job. I was presented with the prospect of spending the “summer” in the Lakes District of England, where I was told, it was beautiful and that I would absolutely love it.
It was beautiful and there was a lot to love, but living in a tent in the English countryside is not all it’s cracked up to be! These were a budget tour and some of the accommodation was in camp sites. I was alone on a camp site where I was the caretaker of 20 bright yellow tents, a new kind with internal frames. Pegs were not much use in the rocky damp soil and bent easily when driven in. I had a very large “cooks “tent that doubled as an eatery if the weather was too hazardous for dining on the outdoor tables….. Back up there a minute………
Summer in the Lake District
Yes weather, the Lake District’s location on the north west coast of England, coupled with its mountainous geography, makes it the dampest part of England. Yes, and windy. I spend a good part of my 4 months chasing yellow tents. Wind would whip up under their skirts and they would fly up into the air and crash down in a heap in the creek. The tents had bases that were internally attached and so when my tent became a parachute so did all of my belongings. It rained constantly and there was never enough sun to dry anything when it peeked through the “summer” clouds This was depressing and I needed a lot of positive thinking and a fare amount of cooking skills to get me by. A bus of 55 people for 2 days, breakfast lunch and dinner from 4 large gas burner’s and some giant pots, in a cooks tent, subject to wind and rain?…….. fortunately there was a budget and as long as I met it I was able to improvise in any way I liked , and that may very well be cause for another story because this one is about to take a turn for the better. Between each tour I had two days to spare.
The local cheeses were fantastic and I tried to incorporate them into my menus. After a while, I became friendly with a local, who had a van and this enabled me to get about a bit more, buying local produce and visiting the markets. I cooked for him on my days off , in his lovely dry warm caravan with a fridge and tiny gas burners and pots, where the wind was at bay outside the doors and windows and there was a TV and a bottle of wine, this ended up being my accommodation, of course. I stayed on a little while at the end of the season. I had a tiny space in the local paper where I published a few recipes using ricotta cheese and had my 5 minutes of fame.
This recipe for Ricotta cake remindes me so much of the recipes I had but didn’t keep. I have taken this cake firmly and warmly into my life, as I did the fellow with the warm dry caravan. It is the height of simplicity and well and truly open for reinterpretation. Try the ricotta cream, it is deliciously addictive but of course, not quite as naughty as your average whipped cream.
This post has been updated since Feb 2013 with new images and fresh info.