Friday, March 18, 2011

Ricotta pound cake with Nutella swirl - Help Japan

Yesterday was the 150th anniversary of Italian Unification. It was a holiday in Italy and the city was covered in green, red and white. Flowers, flags, even TicTacs and Nutella dressed up for the occasion. Museums were open and free and despite the rain, the center was crawling with people. Lucky me, I got to go to the office (international stock markets were open and we are in the middle of reporting season). It was a busy morning and I barely even had time to check my Twitter account.

Yes, I entered the world of Twitter. I registered a while ago but hadn't been using it. To be honest, it hasn't caught on here as much as it has in other countries and I just wasn't that into it (until I started reading tweet updates on some of your blogs. I hold you responsible). The other day I had a little time on my hands and started looking into it. I haven't turned back. As one of you food bloggers out there wrote me, it is addictive. True.

This recipe is almost as addicitive.

I had been eyeing My Kitchen in the Rockies' ricotta pound cake recipe for a while. Every time I visited her blog, the picture seemed to be winking at me from the top of her 'Favorites' list. It looked moist and light and I am always on the look out for a breakfast cake to make on week ends.  As I was reading through the recipe my gaze strayed to the bottom of the page, where another photograph caught my eye. In the "you might also like" category was a lovely Nutella swirl pound cake. You know how to sell your wares girl!

It is no secret that I am a Nutella fan and I immediately clicked onto it. As I read the ingredients I realized I didn't have enough Nutella at home to make this. And really, a ricotta pound cake is healthier and lighter... and it looked so incredibly moist. But as I clicked back onto the first recipe, I kept seeing Nutella swirling around in my thoughts. What to do?

The only thing possible: combine the recipes and make a ricotta pound cake with Nutella swirls.

1 1/2 cups flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups ricotta
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
Nutella (up to a 13 oz. jar)
(confectioner’s sugar for dusting)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a Turk's head mold, a Kugelhopf mold or a 9-inch loaf pan. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl cream together butter, ricotta and sugar until smooth and light. Then beat in eggs one at a time and add in the vanilla extract.
Beat in dry ingredients on low speed to combine them and then beat the batter for about 30 seconds on medium speed. Pour one-third of the batter into the pan, then spread Nutella on top (I wasn't using the whole 13 oz. so I added in dollops). Pour in another third of the batter and the remaining Nutella and cover with the remaining batter. Lightly swirl the Nutella into the batter with a knife, without overmixing. Then tap the pan on counter to remove air pockets.
Bake cake for about 60 minutes. Let cool in pan and then on wire rack. Dust with confectioner’s sugar before serving. I didn't because I wasn't serving it to guests and didn't want the added sugar, but it will certainly make it prettier!

I just added the badge below to my post Chocolate ganache tart with hazelnut crust and chocolate glaze. I am participating in the online bake sale for Japan promoted by The Tomato Tart with that tart. Sabrina is the mind behind this fabulous idea, a way to try to help support Japan in its darkest hour. I am so happy she has offered me the opportunity to contribute somehow. The auction proceeds will be donated to Second Harvest Japan, a food bank that is working right now to respond to the immediate needs of the people displaced by this disaster. Whoever is interested in participating, please contact Sabrina directly through her blog. She was very helpful and promptly replied to all my questions.



  1. Ohhhh this looks so fluffy and moist! I have saved this, I am absolutely going to make it. I am sure my girls would love it!!! Thank you so much Fiona!
    BTW, following you on Twitter! :-)

  2. Hi Fiona, I am so happy that the cake worked so well for you. It looks gorgeous. I haven't baked it in a while. Homemade Ricotta is on my list to make. The addition of the Nutella is genius. Love it!!
    Wishing you a wonderful weekend.
    Greetings form Colorado

  3. Manu - It really was moist, My Kitchen in the Rockies really posted the best recipe! Hope your girls like it. See you on Twitter.
    Kirsten - It is the best pound cake I have made to date. And that is naturally because both recipes were perfect. Thank you for inspiring this. Hope you have a great week end.

  4. I was so excited to see you on twitter! :) I am now following My Kitchen in the Rockies too - what a beautiful blog she has!

    This looks and sounds wonderful - I mean please...more than wonderful!!! Think the online bake sale is a great idea too!

    (new computer :) yippee

  5. I love pound cake and this sounds so delicious! Love the Nutella swirl!

    And the bake sale sounds like a marvelous idea!

  6. DD&W - Fun to be on Twitter, although I am such a dork, I don't understand half of what is going on! Glad you like My Kitchen in the Rockies, Kirsten is a great cook. So, so happy for you about your new computer, you must have been having bad withdrawal symptoms. Come on, bake something for the bake sale too!
    Peggy - Then this is for you! And, join us in the bake sale, the more the merrier - or actually the more helpful!

  7. Sorry to hear you had to work yesterday. What a good idea to help raise funds for Japan.

  8. Well now your recipe is winking at me! This looks so delicious and I love that you combined the two recipes.

  9. This cake looks wonderful. Thanks for sharing- I can't wait to try it!

  10. What a beautiful cake and I love how you've Nutella-ised it! Manu told me about that bake sale and I'm really keen to be part of it :)

  11. Lindy - I am pretty used to it after all these years and luckily we take turns. Yes, Sabrina had a great idea with the bakesale.
    Julie - the combo turned out pretty delicious, I have to admit.
    Miri - let me know if you do!
    Lorraine - happy to hear you will be participating. I know you have a special tie to Japan, no?

  12. We share a love for Nutella. That pound cake is beautiful and looks so moist. I also want to attempt to make my own ricotta. I have recipe that looks easy. Can't wait to try this cake.

  13. uhmm. this cake looks amazing. I'm gonna teach hazelnut spread this week and maybe I could use the spread to make the cake later. nice =)


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