Walnut cake with mascarpone

Toasted walnuts, creamy ricotta and a tangy apricot glaze make this rich Italian style cake from Gennaro Contaldo utterly irresistible
By Gennaro Contaldo
Walnut cake with mascarpone
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6-8
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Effort: medium



  • 200 g butter
  • 250 g caster sugar
  • 8 eggs
  • 50 g plain flour, sieved
  • 250 g ricotta cheese
  • 45 g roasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 4 tbsp lemon zest

For the glaze:

  • 60 g apricot jam
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 30 g dark chocolate, grated
  • mascarpone, to serve


1. Set the oven to 180°C/gas 4. Grease a 25cm cake tin.

2. Place the butter and half the sugar together in a large bowl and beat until pale and creamy.

3. Add the egg yolks and beat well, until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the flour.

4. In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese, ground walnuts and lemon zest.

5. Whisk the egg whites until stiff, then fold in the ricotta mixture and remaining sugar.

6. Lightly but thoroughly combine the contents of both bowls and pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the cake springs back when touched lightly in the centre. Allow the cake to cool a little and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

7. To make the glaze, gently heat the apricot jam and water in a pan and stir until smooth and runny. Brush over the top of the cake and scatter over the grated chocolate. Serve with mascarpone.

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