Prep 20 mins
Cook 1 hr
You don’t have to be an ‘Italiano’ to enjoy this ‘slice of heaven.’ The moist shortcake-like density, generous layer of sweetened ricotta cheese, and cinnamon-sugar crumble topping will surely impress family, friends, and guests alike. Surprisingly simple to prepare, the result is unbelievably delicious! Your guests will think you slaved for hours over this splendid dessert cake. That’s O.K. – Just smile and sip your after dinner espresso. Please Note: I would like to share credit for this "Italian Love Cake" recipe version with the Kirkwood Ski Education Foundation.
For The Cake
- 1 (18 1/4 ounce) package cake mix (Yellow or lemon, Your favorite brand)
- 1⁄3 cup vegetable oil
- 8 large eggs, Plus
- 3 eggs, needed to prepare the cake mix
- 3 lbs whole milk ricotta cheese (Drained, See 'directions')
- 3⁄4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract (Not imitation)
For The Topping
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1⁄2 cup granulated sugar
- 1⁄4 cup dark brown sugar (Packed)
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch squares (Chilled)
- For The Cake:.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees*.
- Grease and flour a 12x15x3 cake pan.
- Prepare the cake according to the package instructions; using the 3 eggs and vegetable oil.
- Pour the cake mix into the prepared pan, spread evenly, and set aside.
- SPECIAL TIP: If desired, mix cake batter using 1 cup water and 1/4 cup Anisette, Limoncello, Frangelico or other liqueur in place of the 1 1/4 cups of water as called for on the package directions.
- With a mixer on medium speed, beat the remaining eggs; add the ricotta cheese, sugar and vanilla. Beat until sooth and fluffy.
- Carefully pour over the middle of the cake mix. DO NOT SPREAD OR BLEND THE TWO BATTERS TOGETHER.
- Bake for 1 hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted. (Ricotta cheese will go to the bottom.)
- Remove from the oven; cool in pan on baker's rack.
- For The Topping:
- In a food processor or blender, blend the first 5 ingredients together.
- Add chilled butter cubes; cut in until the mixture looks like wet sand.
- To Finish Off The Cake:.
- Cool cake until warm, about 1 hour. Evenly sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar crumbles over the cake.
- Serve with vanilla ice cream or gelato and a cup of steaming espresso. "That's Amore' !".
- TO DRAIN RICOTTA CHEESE: Wrap ricotta in a double layer of cheesecloth. Place in a colander, weighed down with 2 or 3 soup-like cans from your pantry. Drain over a bowl in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
- *NOTE: If using a glass baking dish or disposable foil pan, bake at 325 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.
I tried this cake on my son and family. I made the mistake of using a 9x13 regular cake pan. It was very full, I baked it longer. Untill tooth pick came out fairly clean. It was very dense, but very good too! The kids ate it with coffee in the morning.