Lemon Ricotta Cake – 3 Gluten Free Recipes

I wanted to adapt one of the recipes for an Italian Lemon Ricotta Cake recipe to be gluten free, and as close as possible to the original recipe. It was not a surprise to me that it did not work. So, I had to come up with my own list of ingredients to make it work.

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The mixture of the ingredients in my first attempt failed, which resulted in something that tasted good, but could be hardly considered a cake in texture. But you can find 3 other recipes, with variations in crème fraiche or sour cream ingredients, the source of lemon and method of preparation and how to make them in this post.

Recipe 1

Ingredients:

  • 200g ricotta cheese
  • 3 large eggs
  • 140g sugar, extra to dust baking pan
  • 10g vanilla sugar
  • 1 tea spoon vanilla extract
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice (50g, 5 table spoons)
  • 100g almond meal
  • 100g rice flour
  • 2 table spoons sliced almonds for decoration
  • butter to grease 19cm springform baking pan

Preparation:

  • zest the lemon and squeeze the juice
  • sift almond meal and mix it with rice flour
  • beat eggs with sugar and vanilla sugar until pale
  • mix ricotta with lemon juice until combined and add to the egg mixture, continue mixing on low speed for 1-2min
  • add dry ingredients and lemon zest, mix well
  • transfer to greased and dusted with sugar springform
  • use sliced almonds on top
  • bake in preheated to 160-165G fan forced oven for 50-55 min until golden brown and firm to touch

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  • remove springform ring and allow to cool
  • dust with icing sugar

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I wanted this recipe to be easy and use whole eggs without separation of egg yolks and egg whites. The cake turns out well when baking starts in cold oven turned to 170C (fan forced). The temperature reaches 170C in 15 min and all baking takes 55-60min.

Cake texture was very similar to the tea cake texture, may be a little on a dry side. But it stayed the same the next day. I would serve this cake with cream, yogurt, crème fraiche even custard or berry sauces will be nice.

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This cake can take any syrup or liqueurs to enhance the depth of lemon flavour. It can be also used in any layered deserts where spongy biscuits are soaked in coffee or alcohol.

Recipe 2

Ingredients:

  • 200g ricotta cheese
  • 3 large eggs
  • 140g sugar, extra to dust baking pan
  • 10g vanilla sugar
  • 1 tea spoon vanilla extract
  • 50g cooked lemon puree (whole lemons cooked for 1 hour, cooled, cut, deseeded and pureed whole)
  • 40g crème fraiche (2 table spoons)
  • 100g almond meal
  • 100g rice flour
  • 1 pear for decoration, sliced
  • butter to grease 21 cm ring baking pan
  • icing sugar to dust the cake

Preparation:

  • cook lemon(s) in simmering water for 45-60min, let them cool, cut, deseed and make puree using stick blender, use 50g of lemon puree, the rest can be frozen for future use

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  • sift almond meal and mix it with rice flour
  • beat eggs with sugar and vanilla sugar until pale
  • mix and beat on low speed ricotta cheese with crème fraiche and lemon puree until fully combined and add to the egg mixture, continue mixing on low speed for 1-2min
  • add dry ingredients, mix well
  • grease and dust with sugar ring baking pan

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  • Spoon the batter into the baking pan

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  • level the top of the batter with spatula or gently tapping the pan
  • slice pear and insert slices gently pressing them into the batter
  • bake in preheated to 160-165G fan forced oven for 50-55 min until golden brown and firm to touch
  • before taking the cake out make sure that it is separated from the pan by shaking the pan with a cake

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  • let the cake rest for at least 30min

This cake is easy to cut, it keeps the shape well and do not crumble. The cake is more dense, compared to the previous one. It is more moist and soft as well. It does not need any cream or sauce to be served. The texture of this lemon and ricotta cake does not change the next day either.

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I like to use sliced apples or pears in round or ring shaped cakes, they look decorative, but also do not create any mess when cakes are sliced and served. Raising during baking batter reaches the top of sliced fruits and makes it easier to cut the cake.

Recipe 3

Ingredients:

  • 200g ricotta cheese
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 140g sugar, extra to dust baking pan
  • 10g vanilla sugar
  • 1 tea spoon vanilla extract
  • 1 whole lemon, sliced and deseeded (usable portion was 150g)
  • 40g light sour cream (2 table spoons, I used Coles brand)
  • 100g almond meal
  • 100g rice flour
  • 1 level tea spoon baking powder

Preparation:

I made my preparation using both food processor and benchtop mixer, but stick blender and any mixer can be used.

  • wash and dry the lemon (because it is used fresh, it is better to use your own or organic)
  • cut and deseed the lemon
  • beat egg whites until stiff peaks, put aside
  • start processing sliced lemon with half the sugar, wait until the mixture resembles coarse paste
  • with food processor running add egg yolks and the rest of the sugar, run for 2-3 min
  • add ricotta cheese and sour cream and continue processing for another 3-4 min
  • transfer the mix into low wide bowl
  • sift almond meal and mix it with rice flour and baking powder
  • add half to the batter, mix well
  • add second half, if the batter becomes too thick, add 2 table spoons of egg whites
  • mix 1/3 of egg whites to loosen the batter
  • gently fold the rest of egg whites using spatula
  • grease Bundt cake pan and dust it with sugar
  • spoon the batter, gently shake the pan to level the batter
  • bake in preheated to 165C fan forced oven for 55-60 min
  • if the cake is not separated from the sides of the pan, let it rest for 5-7 min and turn it over on a wire rack lined with baking paper
  • let it rest for 60-90 min
  • transfer it to a serving plate or board
  • dust with icing sugar to decorate

I applied my own lemon glaze on a hot cake straight from the oven to achieve even more distinct citrusy taste. It gave the cake its shine, but it also made the crust soft.

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I enjoyed the intensity of the flavour, but I prefer the hard texture of cake crusts, particularly in the soft and moist cakes. It terms of the taste, I have finally achieved what I wanted, strong and intense lemon flavour, well-balanced by comparatively small amount of sugar. To my relief there was no acidity in taste, which I was afraid of. But I did not want to overload the cake with sugar and took a risk. I suspect, that it also depends on the acidity in the lemon itself and that is why I advice to taste the batter and add more sugar if necessary.

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The texture of this cake was very similar, if not identical to the recipe 2. It was soft and moist, but also quite dense and not light and fluffy. I am sure that each of these lemon and ricotta cakes can be baked in any of the used baking pans. I did not try to bake these cakes in loaf tins and think that they might be not the best choice. But again, I did not try and I do not know for sure.

 

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