11 June 2012

Almond Cake, Ricotta & Cherry Trifle


We choose to share every important milestone we go through with our families.  The familiar faces staring at you with encouraging & proud eyes are enough to take away the heaviness of fear to take a step forward one after the other.   We are cocooned in the warm embraces of these people we have been sharing our whole lives with on every significant change we go through.  

I spent a splendid weekend sharing two milestones with my husband's family.   My family, I should say, for the past decade. 


A big family is almost impossible to gather in one place at one time, especially when everyone comes from different parts of the country.  But sometimes, it happens.  And it leaves us with so many pleasant hours of catching up.  That's what made this weekend special.  There had been a wedding to celebrate, a 60th birthday and most of all, a big family of 27 (one didn't make it),  all 3 generations, gathering in one place to stay together after so many years. 


The wedding was at an unforgettable old villa along the Via Appia Antica (Old Appian Way). The Old Appian Way gave us a long moment of hesitance in the car.  Being an ancient Roman road from 312 B.C., we wondered why it was open to vehicles. My husband didn't want to take the car there even if the directions said so.  I didn't want to either but with high heeled shoes, thinking of maneuvering my way through the 200 m. road on the big cobblestones then through a massive lawn, I had to antagonize this "preserve the historical road" idea.   


Via Appia Antica (Old Appian Way) is a 200 km. stretch of straight road done by the ancient Romans from Rome to Capua (Brindisi, southern Italy).  I walked on a portion of it closer to Rome once and I remember the eerie feeling of walking along a road full of brutality in its history.  During the revolt of the slaves in 71 B.C.,  more than 6,000 men were crucified along the Appian Way from Capua to Rome.


History aside, let me show you some pictures of Villa di Fiorano.  It swept me away as I entered the gate and walked through the lawn (with my heels sinking).  There was live music serenading us the whole night, buffet tables of antipasti and cocktails, dinner, desserts, all set on the garden beside the pool.  It was beautiful and such a long night.  Italian weddings are always long.   We went back to the house almost 12 hours after we left it. 




Now let's jump to this delectable trifle I put together using what was left from the Mini Almond Cakes with Ricotta, Pears & Cherries.  It's the third dessert I did on that long day of marathon cooking at home.  Being an offshoot of the cake, I didn't get to measure any of the ingredients.  My suggestion is to make this trifle using the scraps of the mini cakes, like what I did.  That way, you don't end up with any leftovers.   


If, on the other hand, you just want to compose this one, use any other cake you already have (But almond is delicious!),  mix a bit of ricotta with sugar and sprinkle with quartered cherries.  Measure by eye.   Feast with your eyes.

Hoping you all had a wonderful weekend like I did.  Let's look forward to a good week ahead of us.  



Almond Cake, Ricotta & Cherry Trifle

Recipe comes from my previous post,  Mini Almond Cakes with Ricotta, Pears & Cherries, which can be seen here.

Ingredients:
Serves 4
  • 150 g. ricotta
  • 35 g. icing sugar
  • 3/4 cup cherries, pitted & quartered + 8 whole for garnishing
  • 125 g. cream, whipped
  • almond cake (or any other type of cake), diced (refer to this link for the recipe)
  • mint leaves (optional)
Directions:
  1. In a bowl, mix the ricotta and the sugar.  Let it pass through a strainer with a fine mesh by pushing it with the help of a rubber spatula or the back of a spoon.  - See more at: http://www.apronandsneakers.com/2012/06/mini-almond-cakes-with-ricotta-pears.html#sthash.FtbWY3OD.dpuf
    In a bowl, mix the ricotta and the sugar. Let it pass through a strainer with a fine mesh by pushing it with the help of a rubber spatula or the back of a spoon. Add the cherries and the whipped cream, folding gently with a rubber spatula. Refrigerate for an hour.
    1. In a bowl, mix the ricotta and the sugar.  Let it pass through a strainer with a fine mesh by pushing it with the help of a rubber spatula or the back of a spoon. 
    2. Add the cherries.
    3. Add the whipped cream and fold gently with a rubber spatula.  
    4. Refrigerate for an hour.
    - See more at: http://www.apronandsneakers.com/2012/06/mini-almond-cakes-with-ricotta-pears.html#sthash.FtbWY3OD.dpuf
  2. In a glass, spoon some ricotta & cherry mixture.
  3. Sprinkle the diced almond cake.
  4. Garnish with a cherries & fresh mint leaves.  
  5. Serve cold. 




26 comments:

  1. What a lovely trifle, Rowena. Your is much prettier than others I've seen. This is one to savor with the almond, ricotta, and cherry.

    Thanks for sharing photos of the villa. What a fun weekend of celebrating!

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    1. The cherry on top gave it a nice touch. Thanks Laura!

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  2. Your cherry trifle is gorgeous! I will soon be picking cherries off my tree in about a week or so. This is a must try. I'm glad that you had a wonderful weekend!

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    1. How wonderful to have your own cherry tree Tessa! We had one but it didn't survive. We never replaced it anymore. I had a very tiring but really wonderful weekend. I hope you had a good one too!

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  3. What a gorgeous dessert for one, and for another, what gorgeous photos! That villa is amazing, and such a lovely family! I was 5 generations when I was born and my children also 5 generations. I wish we could have captured this in such a way that you have...beautiful!

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    1. You should have a big family then! I am really glad I brought the camera on the weekend parties to capture the moments.

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  4. What a beautiful trifle! Love the brilliant cherry that just pops off the top. I especially loved hearing about the celebration weekend and the villa looks simply amazing. Wonderful photos - thank you for sharing!!!

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    1. That cherry on top really made it more special. Thanks Lisa!

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  5. What a beautiful place to have a wedding and how nice that all the family was reunited minus one. I bet you are exhausted but happy. The cherry trifle looks beautiful and delicious. Have a good week!

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    1. I was exhausted but really had fun. Thanks Suzanne!

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  6. It's so beautiful there!!! And yes, 12 hours is a bit much, but when you are with family, it's almost so worth it! These are gorgeous trifles, Weng...the colours, the flavours...they all seem to just blend well into each other! Great job!

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    1. I thought it was very beautiful in that place too Jen. If only I had not been sinking so much on the lawn, I would have taken more pictures. Thanks Jen!

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  7. What a beautiful setting for a wedding, it looks so magical!

    And you have me wanting nore than anything one of those amazing trifles as I sit here typing this comment :)

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    1. I thought it was beautiful too for a wedding. :-) Thanks!

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  8. How beautiful to celebrate such milestones surrounded by your loving family - and in such an idyllic setting. You make my heart yearn for Italy! Your lovely trifle just jumps off the screen - such beautiful images, Rowena.

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    1. It was such a memorable weekend. Thanks Priscilla.

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  9. What an amazing place for a wedding, everything looks so beautiful! This trifle seems like the perfect thing to do with a few leftover slices of cake!

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    1. I was pretty amazed myself with the place. I love garden receptions especially when you watch the sunset with a drink in your hands. I'm glad you like the trifle. It's a good thing to put together with the leftovers.

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  10. Sigh! I dream about visiting Italy, and anywhere in Europe! Everything is more classy and looks beautiful! Your kids are so cute Weng! I always love their expressions - so adorable! Your trifle is gorgeous. No wonder - you see beautiful things everyday and you have good eyes for your food preparation too! ;-)

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    1. That's right. Beautiful things inspire to make other beautiful things. :-) I'm sure you will like Europe. There are so many beautiful places to see and new food to try. Thanks Nami!

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  11. Bellisima! (Would I fit in?) Hee hee. Such a beautiful setting - there's nothing like family. I'm looking forward to seeing my large extended family this August when we gather for my sister's wedding :)

    Then trifle is just lovely, too. You have such a wonderful style, it really shines, Rowena!

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    1. Family weddings are wonderful! I'm sure yours will be spectacular! Thanks Liren!

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  12. the time flies so fast when family is around. The villa is such a gorgeous place.
    and the cakes, so easy to put together and so elegant. beautiful!

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    1. Sometimes the simplest thing can come out beautifully too. Thanks Roxanne!

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  13. This post is stunning as are these trifles!

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I would love to read what you think!