Sbrisolona cake is a famous typical dessert of Mantua, Lombardy. The name applies that it is crumbly and fragile and is supposed to be eaten with your hand rather than a spoon or fork. The traditional recipe goes back to the 17th century and, according to historians, was popular at the court of the Gonzaga family that ruled Mantua. However, the recipe and the name varies in different regions. For instance, in Veneto it is called rosegota. In Verona the cake is made without eggs, so it is softer and crumblier. In some other regions the cake is made with ricotta instead of almonds. I added a few twists, and bake my own version of sbrisolona with ricotta, chocolate and peach (yes, I have already declared my love for peaches before. When they are in season I can’t stop eating them!!). Sinfully good!
The crust and crumble:
1 cup unbleached flour
1 cup spelt flour
1/3 cup sugar
½ cup butter, melted
1 tsp baking powder
1 egg, lightly beaten with a fork
1 ½ cups fresh ricotta
3 tbsp natural yogurt
1/3 cup sugar
30 g dark bitter chocolate, chopped in coarse pieces
1 small peach, finely chopped
Preheat the oven to 180C degrees. In a bowl mix the flower, sugar, baking powder and melted butter. Put half of the mix aside in a separate bowl (Mix 2). Add the egg to one portion of the mix (Mix 1) and work the mix until crumbles form.
Grease the cake form with butter and start making the crust of the cake by lining the form with pieces of the flour Mix 1, press it gently to the bottom only. Make sure it is even and there are no bumps and gaps.
Add yogurt to the ricotta, gently mix in sugar, peach pieces and chocolate. Spoon the ricotta filling on the crust in the form. Smooth it out evenly.
Work the remaining flour Mix 2 with your fingers to make coarse crumbs. Scatter it on the top of the filling evenly. Bake the cake for 35-40 minutes until it is light brown. Cool the cake on a rack for at least an hour before taking it out of the form.