We’ll be forever grateful to Chef John Ash for creating this recipe which has become a centerpiece at any Bellwether Farms event. In his words, “The key to his cake is to use good, whole milk ricotta…and my favorite where I live is from Bellwether Farms.” Chef Ash suggests strawberries here, but you can use any berry, fruit or fruit sauce that you like.
Makes one 8-inch cake. Serves 6-8
For the Cake:
2 ½ pounds Bellwether Farms Whole Milk Basket Ricotta
5 whole eggs
½ cup sugar
½ cup orange marmalade
¼ cup dark rum
1/3 cup cake flour or all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons finely grated orange zest
For the Strawberries:
1 pint fresh ripe strawberries
1/3 cup sugar, or to taste
¼ cup fresh orange juice
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly butter and flour an 8-inch springform pan. In a food processor, combine the ricotta, eggs, sugar and marmalade and process until smooth. Add the rum, flour, zest and process again in short bursts until smooth.
Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 1 hour. The center will still be soft (and look jiggly) at this point. Turn the oven off and leave the cake in the oven with the door very slightly ajar for about 20 minutes. Remove the cake from the oven, let cool completely and then refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.
Remove the cake from the refrigerator and let it return to room temperature. Meanwhile, hull, wash and slice the berries. Toss them gently with the sugar and orange juice and set aside.
To serve, remove the sides from the pan and slice the cake. Serve each piece with some strawberries on top and on the side. The cake can be made a day ahead, stored refrigerated in its pan, wrapped in plastic.