Recipe Cassata Alla Siciliana


sponge cake
1 cup sugar
2 cups ricotta
4 oz. chocolate
2 cups mixed candied fruit
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tbs. chestnut flour
4 tbs. sugar
1 tsp. powdered cinnamon
1 oz. Maraschino liqueur
1 tbs. pistachio nuts
1/2 cup apricot jelly
1/2 cup fondant
1 oz. orange-flower water
1 tbs. grated orange zest
4 tbs. raisins, soaked and squeezed
1 pinch of salt
2 tbs. pine nuts
3 tbs. olive oil
2 tbs. walnuts, coarsely chopped
milk as needed


This cake, a specialty of Sicily, should not be confused with the ice cream dish ” cassata alla siciliana” of the same name. In Erice, cassata is made with a citron jam filling and is covered with almond pastry.

Line the bottom and sides of a 10-in. diameter cake mold with thin slices of sponge cake.

Dissolve the sugar in a small amount of water on a low heat. Sieve the Ricotta and mix it with the sugar. Cut the chocolate into small chunks and dice half of the candied fruit. Add them to the Ricotta together with the vanilla, cinnamon, liqueur and pistachio nuts.

Put the Ricotta in the mold, level off the top, cover with slices of sponge cake, and cool for several hours. Unmold on a dish before serving. Spread the top with apricot jelly, cover with fondant dissolved in a little orange-flower water, and garnish the cassata alla siciliana with various types of candied fruit.

You can also glaze the top of the cassata alla siciliana with light green fondant.

Regional recipe from Sicily.