Monday, April 11, 2011
This week's Project Pastry Queen recipe was chosen by Amanda of Fake Ginger. This was actually one of the first recipes that caught my eye when I first flipped through The Pastry Queen, but I was a little put off by the method she uses to assemble the cake. First, an angel food cake is baked and sliced into 3 even layers. Then comes the weird part. It's layered in a mixing bowl with a sweetened ricotta filling, then inverted and iced with freshly whipped cream and topped with fresh strawberries. The mixing bowl step is what threw me off. I just couldn't envision the finished product.
I considered making cupcakes instead, but in the end I was really just curious to see how this would turn out. And guess what? It wasn't as weird or difficult as I expected! I have several mixing and serving bowls, so I just took a look and estimated which one looked the best. The layers fit perfectly in the bowl, and after chilling the cake for about an hour, it unmolded perfectly!
The ricotta filling is really what makes this cake special. The combination of the light and fluffy angel food cake with the sweet and creamy ricotta is really wonderful. I enhanced my filling a bit by adding a few tablespoons of strawberry preserves, and I also halved the heavy cream to keep the filling nice and thick.
After it was assembled, it was almost too pretty to slice into - almost. The cake almost tastes like a trifle - the ricotta filling is partially absorbed by the cake, and the fresh strawberry slices and whipped cream tie it all together. This is really just a fancy version of strawberry shortcake. And a delicious one at that!
Amanda has the full recipe posted on her blog. And check back next week for caramel-filled brownies!