SICILIAN CASSATA – Part II

Time to channel your inner Sicilian grandmother. I am taking for granted you can muster (or buy) a 10” sponge cake so I am not including the recipe for it. If sheep’s ricotta is not available, substitute with cow ricotta or make your own.

ALMOND PASTE

7 oz Almond Flour

7 oz Sugar

3.5 oz Water

A few drops of green food coloring (optional)

 

  1. Dissolve sugar and water in a small pot on low heat. As soon as the sugar reaches a light amber colour, add the almond flour and a few drops of food coloring. Mix well and pour it on a slightly wetted marble counter or on a silicone mat. Let cool.
  2. Knead with your hands until you obtain a smooth paste.
  3. Roll it with a rolling-pin to 1/4” thickness. Set aside.

 

RICOTTA FILLING

1# Fresh sheep’s ricotta

10.5 oz Sugar

1.8 oz Candied pumpkin or other candied fruit, diced

1.8 oz Dark Chocolate Chips

1 ts Vanilla Extract

 

  1. If the ricotta is very wet, let it drain for a while then mix it with the sugar and the vanilla extract.
  2. Set aside for an hour and then push it through a sieve, a chinois or a cheesecloth.
  3. Add candied pumpkin and chocolate chips.

 

ASSEMBLY

1/2 C Rum

Sugar and water a.n.

Plenty of large candied fruit, assorted

Fondant or sugar glaze (recipe to follow)

 

  1. Cut the sponge cake in three even disks and place the first one on the bottom of a 10” round mold.
  2. Combine the rum with a bit of sugar to taste and some water to thin it out and then pour the mixture on the sponge cake.
  3. Cut the almond paste and the second disk of sponge cake into rectangles and place them on the first disk, alternating almond paste and cake.
  4. Pour the ricotta filling on top and smooth it with a spatula.
  5. Top with the third disk of cake. Set aside for an hour.
  6. Unmold the cake on a platter and either cover with fondant (following the package instructions) or make your own sugar glaze by dissolving 5.3 oz of powder sugar and 1/4 C of water on low heat, until it becomes transparent and thick. While still hot, pour it on the cake, spreading it evenly with a spatula.
  7. Let cool and decorate with the candied fruit.

 

 

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