Ricotta makes this the lightest Orange and Ricotta bundt cake you will ever try! This orange and ricotta cake is soft, puffy and delicate and so easy (just one bowl and a whisk!). Make this with any citrus you have whether it be lemons, blood oranges or tangelos! This cake is a pushy recipe Dear Reader and I called her Julia.
Ricotta cheese gives this orange cake the most incredible texture. It's light and yet moist at the same time with tiny clouds of ricotta dotted throughout the cake. If you made the very popular orange ciambella cake then this cake is very different in texture. While both use a lot of oranges this one is also moist but wonderfully puffy too while the ciambella is a dense crumbed cake with a velvety texture. I like both equally and they're both absolutely worth making.
Cara Cara Oranges with a slight rosy tinge
Like the ciambella cake, the tips are very similar but worth repeating to ensure that you get a flawless result every time
Tips for making this Orange and Ricotta Cake
1 - I used a 6 cup bundt tin (this is the tin that I used with affiliate link) and it's one of the most beautiful tins I own!
2 - Use a slurry to grease your bundt cake (instructions are below). You can also buy a baking spray with flour but do not use a regular oil baking spray as it won't be quite enough to make sure that your bundt tin releases the cake.
3 - Please sift the flour as instructed. Sifting is my least favourite job in the kitchen but it is crucial in this recipe to give it that light texture.
4 - I used Paesanella ricotta for this recipe which is a sturdier type of ricotta (rather than a runnier or creamier ricotta)
5 - Use cake flour instead of plain all purpose flour (see instructions below). Tips 3-5 all contribute to a soft textured cake.
6 - If you have a strong or bitter olive oil, try mixing it or replacing it with some canola oil because you don't want your cake to be bitter.
7 - You can bake this in a regular 20cm/8inch round tin too. Just make sure that the centre springs back when pressed down which means the cake is fully cooked.
This cake is special enough to serve at a dinner and I love this baking tin because it reminds me of vintage jelly molds with all of those curves and ripples. I may even make a retro style jelly in it one day. Speaking of retro, I was lucky enough to attend a media screening of Julia, the Julia Child documentary that has just come out. It was my first movie since the 2021 lockdown and I invited Monica to come along as she is a huge Julia Child fan. Usually with media screenings they give you something to eat as it is after work but they didn't which gave us an opportunity to bring our own food so she and I brought along our own snacks.
We both brought some sushi as well as other bits and pieces in a lunchbox. I also had some of the blue cheese dip that I am absolutely obsessed with and some crunchy snow peas and some crackers topped with Comte cheese and my favourite cheese and bacon popcorn. You're only allowed to take your mask off while you are eating so after feasting on our meal we popped the masks back on and sat back to relax and watch the movie.
Monica has read and watched a lot about Julia so a lot of the movie was familiar to her already and I think she was hoping that it would be more in-depth. On the other hand I really enjoyed the movie because while I knew some basics I didn't know anywhere near as much about her. It also gave a well rounded picture of the woman as it also showed her flaws as well as her achievements and influence. It was also very inspiring because Julia's success came later in life. She only graduated Le Cordon Bleu was at age 39 and only found mainstream success at 50. So it goes to show that it's never too late to change your life!
So tell me Dear Reader, are you a fan of Julia Child? Do you have a favourite cake tin?
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE? Share your creations by tagging @notquitenigella on Instagram with the hashtag #notquitenigella
Orange Ricotta Cake
Rated 5.0 out of 5 by 2 readers
An Original Recipe by Lorraine Elliott
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour
- 10g/0.3ozs melted butter and 10g/0.3ozs flour (for greasing tin)
- 3/4 cup/185ml/6.3flozs orange juice
- Finely grated zest of 2 oranges
- 3/4 cup/190g/6.3ozs caster or superfine sugar
- 1.5 cups/225g/8ozs. cake flour*
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1.5 cups/360g/12.7ozs ricotta cheese
- 90ml/3flozs extra virgin olive oil (or a 50/50 mix of olive oil and canola oil)
- 3 eggs, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- Pinch salt
For icing (optional)
- 160g/5.6ozs. icing or powdered sugar
- 2-3 tablespoons orange juice
To make 1.5 cups of cake flour for this recipe, replace 6 tablespoons of plain all purpose flour with 6 tablespoons cornflour/fine cornstarch
Step 1 - Brush a 6 cup baking tin with a slurry made from 10g/0.3ozs melted butter and 10g/0.3ozs flour. Preheat oven to 160C/320F.
Step 2 - Mix the juice, zest and sugar and allow the sugar to become syrupy (it doesn't have to dissolve completely). Sift the flour with baking powder twice and set aside. I hate sifting but you really need to do it for this cake to get that lovely, light texture.
Step 3 - In a large bowl whisk the ricotta, oil, eggs, vanilla and salt together and then add the juice and sugar mixture and mix to combine well. Sift in the flour baking powder mixture in a few lots stirring in between additions. Try not to overwork the batter by over mixing it in. Pour into the tin going 3/4 of the way up and bake for 1 hour or until the centre springs back when pressed. Allow to cool completely on a cake rack. You can either sift icing sugar over the top or make the icing below.
Step 4 - Place the icing sugar in a food processor and process well until all lumps disappear. Add the juice in one tablespoon at a time. Err on the side of caution and make it thick and not too runny. Spoon it over the cooled cake.