Brown Butter Apple Ricotta Cake

Well hello there! It's been 20 days (eek!) since my last post. Between the beginning of the school year and coaching, I barely have time to eat let alone write.  If I manage to carve out a precious few crepuscular moments to grocery shop it is a stressful endeavor. I attempt to pick out items I may have time to consume before they expire and, this year in particular, I'm failing miserably. I had to throw out half a container of goat cheese, half an apple pie that grew mold like you'd never believe (before it was set to expire!), and half a package of boil in a bag rice that shriveled into nothingness.

You may look at this as poor planning but I see this time of year magnifying my singleness. I'm going to do a single girl rant for half a second: most of the time I am fine with being single. Most of the time (The icky insect moments? Car trouble? New Year's Eve? Better with a boyfriend). When I'm pulling fifteen hour days it would be great to have someone to come home to and with whom I can share the contents of the fridge. It's comforting to prep fresh ingredients together instead of feeling like I'm simply shredding dollar bills like a chunk of cheddar.

That being said, I do have some wonderful circles of friends and I love feeding them. Along with a few others, I was invited to a coworkers house this weekend for dinner. Since I'm practically programmed to show up with at least two items, I arrived with a bouquet of flowers in one had and this spur of the moment brown butter apple ricotta cake in the other. It was inspired by one of my favorite BA cakes and some pointers from this particular recipe, but has some tweaks and touches of my own.

3 medium apples


1 3/4 cups flour

¾ cup sugar

1 ½ tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 stick of unsalted butter

2 eggs

14oz ricotta

2 tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp lemon zest

1 tsp cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350. Line a 8-9” inch pan with parchment or tinfoil. A spring form would also work. Spray with nonstick spray.

In a small sauce pan, melt the stick of butter until browned. Do not let it burn, the window of opportunity for browning butter is more like a porthole. Set aside to cool.

Slice two of the apples crossways. Layer these apple slices over the bottom of the pan. Drizzle with honey.  Peel, core and finely chop the last apple.

In a medium bowl mix the flour, baking powder, sugar, half the cinnamon and half lemon zest. Add the chopped apple to this mixture. Then add half the ricotta, eggs, vanilla, and melted butter.

In another bowl mix the remaining ricotta, cinnamon, brown sugar and zest. Keep separate.

Take half the flour batter and spread it over the apples in the pan. Next, layer the ricotta mixture. Finish with the rest of the flour batter.

Bake for 70 minutes or until knife comes out clean from the center.

Cool completely before inverting and removing pan. Serve with ice cream or whipped cream.

It was received better than I thought possible, which is always a great feeling. This cakevproved itself as a dessert but I'm betting it would make for a mean breakfast treat as well. It's a cake that might be worth being single for, I mean does anyone really want to share the last piece of a cake this good? Until the next dish, ciao!