berries | cake | cakes | quick & easy | recipe | ricotta | seasonal | strawberry | traditional with a twist | treats | vanilla

Let’s talk about berries & bundts, bitches.

May 4, 2015

Remember I said I never make cakes? Unless its easy? Well… yeah. This is why I’m obsessed with these tiny little mini-bundts. Remember the mini-bundt pan I spoke about a few months ago?

Strawberry ricotta mini bundt cakes.

I love it. Mini-bundts are my new favorite thing. They’re SO easy to just fill up with a recipe and bam- instant fancy. They make any recipe look awesome-r. And way cuter, let’s be honest. Not that ricotta cake needs help being awesome, but look. So cute.

Strawberry ricotta mini bundts.

And strawberries are cute, too.

Strawberries for ricotta mini-bundt cakes.

When you find yourself with strawberries on sale, and you’re dying for the fresh smell of a summer berry even though it’s only late April, you just buy ’em. And make cakes.

And jam.

Anyway. Rule #1 of strawberry fun: get a strawberry huller. It makes your life so much easier! Mucho thanks to my friend Dee who bought us a bunch of stuff off of our wedding registry including this little huller. Talk about convenient!

Strawberry ricotta mini-bundt cakes.

Ricotta cakes are some of my favorite cakes to make, when I actually make cakes. Not only are they incredibly moist and light, they’re also super quick to pull together because you don’t (usually) have to wait to soften butter. This recipe uses melted butter, which you can melt while you’re hulling and chopping the strawberries and by the time you’re ready for it, its good to go.

By the way, these mixing bowls were one of the best investments I’ve made, kitchen-wise. If you bake or cook a lot, BUY THEM. K, back to the cakes.

Strawberry ricotta mini bundt cakes.

I found this recipe on Epicurious’ Facebook page for raspberry ricotta cake, and I altered it to suit my needs/wants. You can substitute blackberries or raspberries for the strawberries, of course, and you can also use frozen berries.

Strawberry ricotta mini bundt cakes.

STRAWBERRY RICOTTA MINI-BUNDT CAKES (OR REGULAR CAKE- adapted from Epicurious.com)

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 3/4 pound strawberries, washed, hulled and chopped (or 1 cup frozen berries)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a 6-bundt mini bundt pan with nonstick spray (or just line a 9″-diameter cake pan with parchment paper and lightly coat with nonstick spray if you’re making one cake). Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk eggs, ricotta, lemon zest and vanilla in a medium bowl until smooth; fold into dry ingredients just until blended. Then fold in butter, followed by 3/4 cup strawberries, taking care not to crush berries. Scrape batter into prepared pan and scatter remaining 1/4 cup berries over top. *If making mini-bundts, spoon  2 teaspoons chopped berries into each bundt before adding batter instead.
  3. Bake cake until golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 50–60 minutes. Let cool at least 20 minutes before unmolding.
  4. Do ahead: Cake can be made 2 days ahead. Store tightly wrapped at room temperature.

Strawberry ricotta mini-bundts.

The berries on the bottom (er, top) of the bundt will caramelize in their own sugars as the cakes bake, and will develop a darker, deeper flavor. The berries inside the cake will remain pinkish red and keep the bright berry flavor you’re used to.

If you want to, you can just re-fill the bundt pan for a second batch, but if not, in addition to making 6 mini-bundts you can also get an 8″ cake out of it. And yes, you can also do cupcakes. I’d put the extra berries on top, especially if you’re baking with liners, though.

Strawberry ricotta mini-bundt cakes.

Strawberry ricotta mini cakes.

And just look at what you can do for presentation:

Strawberry ricotta bundt cakes.

You can also fill the middle with whipped cream or ice cream and top it off with a fresh strawberry. These are perfect for spring/summer birthdays, barbecues, picnics… you name it. Even DIY weddings!

Soundtrack: Bon Jovi – “You Give Love a Bad Name”
Sources & credits: red “fridgie” Pyrex; vintage, Nordic Ware GoldTouch mini-bundt pan; Williams-Sonoma, glass mixing bowls; Williams-Sonoma.
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