Baked ricotta cake with cherry and star anise compote

We’re coming into the colder nights now, the perfect time for dinner parties with friends and if you fancy adding something a little bit special to the menu, this could be just what you’ve been looking for.

These Baked ricotta cakes with cherry and star anise compote look really elegant and are the perfect way to end a meal.

This recipe comes from MasterChef  2012 champion Shelina Permalloo, who demonstrates how easy it is to whip up these cakes in the player above.

Ingredients For the ricotta cake (recipe makes 6):

  • 2 medium free range whisked egg whites
  • 250g ricotta
  • 50g golden caster sugar
  • Butter for greasing ramekins


For the cherry and star anise compote:

  • 400g ripe cherries, pitted
  • 200g of Billington’s Glacé Cherries
  • 3 star anise, whole
  • 100ml water
  • 150g Billington’s Dark Muscovado Sugar
  • 100ml cherry brandy (optional)


Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 160°C/140°C fan/Gas 3.
2. In a bowl, mix the ricotta until completely smooth and leave to one side.
3. In an electric mixer whisk the egg whites and golden caster sugar to soft peaks, fold in the ricotta carefully until the mixture is completely combined and smooth with no lumps.
4. Divide the mixture equally among 6 buttered ramekins. (Should you want to turn out the ricotta cakes, use a silicon muffin tray to ensure a smooth finish).
5. Next create a bain-marie by placing the ramekins into a roasting tray. Carefully pour boiling water into the tray until it’s halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
6. Place in the oven for 20 minutes, or until firm to the touch.
7. Remove the ramekins or silicon tray from the bain-marie and allow to cool.
8. To make the compote place all the ingredients into a pan and simmer for approximately 30 minutes, until the syrup is lovely and glossy and the cherries are still whole. This can be stored in the fridge once it has cooled down.
9. To serve, pour the compote over the baked ricotta cake if kept in the ramekin or turn the cooled ricotta cake out of the silicon tray onto a plate and spoon over some of the lovely glossy compote. For an extra decoration place a whole star anise on top of each cake.

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