Thank you everybody to bear with me this week. It has been a hard week, full of ugly emails and phone calls, visits to the lawyer and uncertainty and I feel I threw all this on you guys. But I’ve had enough with stress and bad thought for this week! Today I just want positive thoughts and something sweet and delicious to share with Wally and with all you!
I went through one of the fundamental books of the Italian cuisine: Pellegrino Artusi’s "La Scienza in Cucina e l’Arte di Mangiar Bene" and after a couple of pages in the dessert section I already knew what I wanted: Semolina Cake. I love semolina in every form: as cous cous, as flour to make gnocchi alla romana and in desserts.
Anything with semolina says “childhood” and “kids” to me…what can be more sweet and comforting than that. So here it is, my favorite semolina cake with all my love.
1 liter (33 fl oz or 4.2 cups) whole milk
130 g (4.6 oz) fine semolina
130 g (4.7 oz or 2/3 cup) sugar
100 g (3.5 oz) blanched almonds (whole)
20 g (1 and ½ tbsp) unsalted butter
grated zest of 1 lemon
5 ml (1 tsp) pure almond extract (I actually used vanilla extract)
1 pinch of salt
Confectioners’ sugar to sprinkle on top
Grind the almonds together with the sugar until very fine and set aside.
Bring the milk to a boil with a pinch of salt and the lemon zest, then slowly add the semolina, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Cook the semolina for about 8 minutes, on low heat, stirring constantly.
Add the almond-sugar mixture and cook for 1 more minute. Finally, add the butter and stir until well mixed. Take off the heat, mix in the almond extract and set aside to cool.
In the meantime, preheat the oven to 350° F and lightly grease a 10” springform pan.
When the semolina mixture is lukewarm add the eggs, previously beaten. Mix well until the mixture is smooth and glossy. Distribute the semolina mixture in the pan and bake for about 45 minutes, or until golden on top.
Let the cake cool in the pan on a rack. When cold unmold the cake and cut it into slices or squares.
Optional: sift confectioners’ sugar on top only when ready to serve, or it will make the cake soggy.
Refrigerate any remaining portions.
Have a sweet day!
Source: Pellegrino Artusi “La Scienza in Cucina e l’Arte di Mangiar Bene” 1891–Italy