An Italian cheesecake that is well worth the extra effort.


  • for the cake:
  • 5 large eggs (separated)
  • 0.5 tsp salt
  • 375 g caster sugar (separate into 100g for egg whites and 275g for yolks)
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 325 g flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • for the filling:
  • 350 g ricotta
  • 150 g icing sugar
  • 0.25 tsp cinnamon
  • 60 g dark chocolate chips
  • 60g candied fruits pineapple
  • 60 g candied papaya
  • 50 g roasted pine nuts
  • 100 ml marsala
  • juice of 1 medium orange
  • icing for decorating:
  • 100 g ricotta
  • 250 g icing sugar
  • candied fruits
  • 425 g caster sugar
  • toasted flaked almonds


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/Gas 4 and then line, butter and flour a 23cm (9”) spring form round cake tin.
  • Beat the egg whites, salt and 100g of caster sugar until it forms stiff peaks. Tip into a large bowl. Beat the yolks with the remaining sugar and lemon rind, in the mixer.
  • Fold the egg white mixture back into the yolk mixture. Sieve the flour with the baking powder and fold into the eggs. Pour mixture into the cake tin and bake for thirty to thirty five minutes.
  • Test the cake with skewer and leave it to cool. For the filling, just combine all the dried ingredients together with the ricotta and set aside.
  • To Assemble the Cake:
  • Cut across the cake to form 2 layers, lay out some cling film and put the base of the cake in the centre. Pour the Marsala and orange juice on each layer of the cake. Mix all the other ingredients for the filling together.
  • Spread the ricotta fruit mixture over and place the other cake layer on top.
  • Wrap the cling film over chill for 6 hours. To finish whisk the ricotta and icing sugar together.
  • Ice the top with ricotta icing. Ice the sides and decorate with the toasted almonds and decorate with candied fruits

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