Cassata Alla Siciliana (Sicilian Cake)
Type: Desserts and Baked Goods
Ricotta cheese and dried fruits make this cake a sweet treat!
Serves: 10 servings
- 1 fat-free vanilla loaf cake or low-fat pound cake (15 ounces, or about 4-x-7 inches)
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons orange juice or amaretto liqueur
- 15 ounces nonfat or low-fat ricotta cheese
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup finely chopped dried cherries or apricots
- 1/4 cup finely chopped semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons Dutch processed cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons skim or low-fat milk
- Using a bread knife, cut the cake horizontally to create 4 layers. Arrange the 3 bottom layers on a flat surface, and sprinkle each layer with 2 tablespoons of the orange juice or liqueur. Set aside.
- To make the filling, place the ricotta, sugar, and vanilla extract in a food processor, and process until smooth. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, and stir in the cherries or apricots and the chocolate chips.
- To assemble the cake, place the bottom cake layer on a serving plate, and spread with a third of the filling. Repeat with the next 2 layers and the remaining filling. Top with the last layer, and cover the cake with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Chill for 8 hours or overnight, or until the filling is firm.
- To make the glaze, place the sugar and cocoa in a small bowl, and stir to mix well. Stir in enough of the milk to make a thick glaze. If using a microwave oven, place the glaze in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat uncovered at high power for 30 seconds, or until hot and runny. If using a conventional stovetop, place the glaze in a small saucepan, and, stirring constantly, cook over medium heat for 30 seconds, or until hot and runny.
- Spread the glaze over the top of the chilled cake, allowing some of the mixture to drip down the sides. Allow the glaze to cool for 5 minutes before slicing and serving, or return the cake to the refrigerator and chill until ready to serve.
Excerpted from The Best-Kept Secrets of Healthy Cooking by Sandra Woodruff, R.D. Copyright © 2000 by Sandra Woodruff.
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