Monday, July 18, 2016

Strawberry Ricotta Cake

Ok, I know, I know. I've been posting a lot of strawberry recipes, lately. What can I say? I love strawberries! The Strawberry Cupcakes, the Strawberry Cream Cheese Cobbler, the Mixed Berry Bundt Cake. All fabulous, I must say. But here's the thing: Sometimes I plan for a month of one ingredient (you know, like, the way I always do a month of pumpkin recipes in October), but this time I really didn't plan for a month of strawberries. It just kinda happened. And by the third week, I figured, ok, well, I guess I might as well go with it! So here we are again with another fabulous strawberry recipe.
 I found it on a website called Liz the Chef, and I believe it was a tweaked version of a recipe she found in Bon Appetit magazine. Of course, I couldn't leave it alone, and I tweaked it even a little bit further, so this is my tweaked version. It's delicious and moist  and it's so easy, you don't even need a mixer. I also like the fact that it makes a simple one layer cake, which is perfect if you're not feeding a crowd. So now we can add this to our fabulous strawberry repertoire. And why not?! More is more! Enjoy!

Nonstick baking spray
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups whole milk ricotta cheese
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
1 1/2 cups strawberries, hulled and quartered, divided
confectioner's sugar (optional garnish)

Preheat oven to 350ºF.
Spray a 9x2" round baking pan with baking spray*.
Using a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
Using a medium-sized bowl, mix together the eggs, ricotta, vanilla, and lemon zest until smooth.
Fold into dry ingredients until just blended.
Add the melted butter, stir, then gently fold in 1 cup of the berries.
Pour batter into cake pan and scatter remaining berries on top.
Bake until golden brown or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 45-50 minutes.
Allow to cool in pan 20 minutes before turning out on a plate. Garnish with confectioner's sugar and serve.

*Be sure to use BAKING spray, not just regular vegetable oil spray. The baking spray has flour in it and takes the place of greasing and flouring the pan.
The lemon zest gives it a bright flavor, but if you're not a fan of lemon, you can just leave it out. On the flip side, if you LOVE lemon, then go ahead and add the zest of a whole lemon instead of just a 1/2 tsp. You could also use orange zest in place of the lemon. YUM!
I bet this cake would probably be AMAZING with blueberries, or any combination of berries!

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