Lemon Ricotta Almond Torta
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened (113 grams)
- 1 1/3 cups sugar
- 1 cup full-fat ricotta
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Zest from 1 organic lemon
- 3 eggs, room temperature, separated
- 3 tablespoons limoncello
- 2 1/2 cups almond flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds
- Powdered sugar, for dusting
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter a 9-inch springform pan. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper.
- Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until incorporated. Mix in the ricotta, vanilla and lemon zest.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then add the egg yolks, one at a time, continuing to beat until very light and creamy. Add in the limoncello, almond flour and baking powder and beat to combine.
- In a separate clean chilled bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the cake mixture. (Don’t worry if white streaks remain – they will disappear once in the oven.)
- Pour the mixture into the prepared springform pan. Smooth the top with a spatula or spoon. Sprinkle with the sliced almonds. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until firm yet slightly springy to the touch.
- Allow to cool completely. (It will fall slightly.) Dust with the powdered sugar and serve!
RECIPES From My SICILIAN NONNA
SICILIAN BISCOTTI REGINA
All-purpose flour: 9 ounces, about 2 cups
Sugar: 1/2 cup
butter, olive oil or lard: 4 ounces
Eggs: 3, separated
Whole milk: 2 tablespoons
Honey: 1 tablespoon
Lemon: Zest of 1 lemon
Salt: 1/4 teaspoon
Sesame seeds: 3/4 cup, plus more as needed
In a bowl combine the flour, sugar, and butter until it resembles coarse sand. Add the egg yolks, milk, honey, zest, and salt and knead until dough forms. Roll the dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least one hour.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Toast the sesame seeds in a dry skillet until dark golden. Put onto a plate. Reserve.
In a small bowl, using a fork, beat the egg whites with 3 tablespoons of water. Divide the chilled dough into 4 sections. Roll each section into a log about 1 inch wide. Cut the log into 1 1/2-inch sections. Repeat with the remaining dough. You should have about 24-26 cookies.
Dip each cookie in the egg whites then roll in the sesame seeds, covering all sides. Put the cookies onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, until golden.
GIUSEPPINA SALEMI BELLINO
A VIDEO RECIPE
A Sicilian classic! The various names for these cookies run the gamut from the elegant Biscotti Regina,“Queen’s cookie”, to the comical Strunzi di Sciocca, “Chicken’s Shit” to the slightly irreverent Strunzi d’Ancilu, “Angel’s shit”.
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