Girovando di blog in blog, occupazione ormai quasi giornaliera, sono incappata in quello di Ornella, e devo dire che il suo Giardino dei Sapori e dei Colori, mi ha affascinata e fatta sentire ancora più in spirito natalizio del solito… Così ho deciso di cimentarmi in una tipica ricetta natalizia partenopea e di lasciarla nella sua raccolta di Natale per condividere, anche se solo in modo etereo, una piccola fetta di tradizione locale… E’ stata la mia prima volta con i Raffiuoli (che da queste parti insieme a sosamielli, rococò e mustaccioli sono i dolci tipici, che trovate ovunque), quindi mi perdonino tutte le persone che sono più ferrate di me con questo dolce, ma vedrete che col tempo saranno ancora più belli…
Raffiuoli are a typical small cake from Naples, you can find on Christmas tables together with other traditional specialties like sosamielli, roccocò and mustaccioli (with the first and the last you must have strong teeth, because they are poor sweets, basically made with sugar and almonds!).
The occasion is Ornella’s Blog Christmas Collection and I decided to try for the first time, to prepare Raffiuoli home instead of buying them… I used a quantity good for 10 pieces, but if you want to try this recipe and have more guests, you can double the ingredients and the result will be perfect!
First of all, the sponge cake: shake 3 eggs with 100 gr. of sugar and a pinch of salt (I used KitchenAid at 4 for 10 minutes but if you have a normal electric whisk you should work the eggs for at least 15-20 minutes until the mix gets soft). Then add 90 gr. of all purposes flour, paying attention to mix softly from the bottom to the top to do not loose your soft mix. Choose your baking shape (muffins or cupcakes one are perfect) and fill 3/4 of them with the mix. Cook in the oven at 160° for 15 minutes.
While the oven is going, prepare the cream for the filling: use 250gr. of fresh goat cheese (ricotta) mixed well with 150gr of sugar and chocolate drops. While you wait for you sponge cake portions to get colder, prepare some soaking with water and sugar, and when it gets colder, out of the fire, add some cherry liqueur.
Once your sponge cake can be used, cut the base of it, take out the inside (but keep it), wet a bit with your soaking and fill the hole with your cheese cream. Once this is done, close well with all the parts your removed and put the cakes on a grill.
At this point, you can put everything for 10 minutes in the freezer and make some fondant sugar or boil some ready sugarpaste to obtain the final icing for your cakes. Don’t forget to put on the top either half cherry or some dried cedar or some coloured almond paste… I am sure that you will enjoy this lovely tradition although you’re not living here…