Almond Crumble Pear Ricotta Cake
Fall is a great time to scour the markets for new crop tree fruits. Pears and apples are fresh off the trees and at their prime in both flavour and texture. Now that the leaves are falling and there’s a nip in the air, it’s also time for fall baking!
Enjoy the fruits of the fall harvest in this one-layer Almond Crumble Pear Ricotta Cake. This easy-to-follow recipe can be made with any tree fruit, most notably pears and apples. The fruit is grated and diced before being added to the batter, while even more sliced fruit adorns the top of the cake.
Even though the fruit adds flavour and moisture to the cake, the real secret to this cake is the ricotta cheese. For a cake that doesn’t contain any butter or shortening, it’s astonishing how rich and moist it is. No one will ever know how low fat it is because of its stunning flavour.
Did you know that ricotta cheese is made from whey, a by-product of cheese making? During the process, milk fats are separated out, leaving the protein rich liquid whey behind. After further fermentation, the whey becomes more acidic, and the proteins can coagulate at high temperatures.
Baking and cooking with ricotta is not only healthy, but it’s a lesson in frugality as well. During WWII, Italian Ricotta Cakes rose to popularity as butter was in short supply due to war rationing. As it features ricotta instead of more expensive (and sometimes scarce) butter, this is a cake born from economy, practicality, and sacrifice.
While traditional versions of this Italian style snacking cake are simply flavoured with orange or lemon zest, the highlight of this cake is its golden oat and almond crumble topping. If you prefer a simpler cake, arrange the fruit slices on top of the batter in a circular design but leave off the crumble. Once the cake has cooled, you can add a light dusting of confectioner’s sugar for a dazzling effect.
Check out the full recipe for Almond Crumble Pear Ricotta Cake.
For more recipes by Bernice featuring Life’s Simple Ingredient check out her recipe for Homemade German Spaetzle.
This blog comes to Life’s Simple Ingredient from Bernice Hill, a Calgary food writer and the sole blogger at dishnthekitchen.com. Bernice loves to challenge herself in the kitchen with new ingredients and techniques. Her passion for local, fresh ingredients is evident in her simple, yet tasty recipes. Her motto in the kitchen is “never stop learning.”
Unsurprisingly, most of Bernice’s other hobbies also involve food. Food photography, dining out at local restaurants, reading and travel are all near and dear to her heart. However, staying home and growing her own garlic and fresh herbs truly make this former farm girl happy.
Find out what Bernice is cooking up on social media @dishnthekitchen.
This post was first published on dishnthekitchen.com.