Who doesn’t love gobbling down a slice of ciambellone whilst knocking back a espresso for breakfast when they’re on holiday in Italy, especially one with thick chocolate spread spooned generously into its middle before baking.
The best version of Ciambellone that I’ve had recently was at the famous Abruzzese cheesemaker Gregorio Rotolo’s agriturismo, Valle Scannese which had been made by his lovely sister Maria Rosaria. Not for her was ciambellone made with some nondescript, cheap oil that produced a mighty ring cake but which was simply sugary sweet in flavour. This was a ciambellone that ‘featured’ their olive oil, and gave it a grassy clean kick that complemented the chocolate spread so well! She served it alongside her homemade pizzelle and raspberry conserve.
Very kindly Maria Rosaria agreed to share her recipe for her irresistible ciambellone, do try it at home, don’t skimp on the quality of the olive oil you use and if you prefer a darker crust simply leave it in the oven for 5 minutes more.
Maria Rosaria's Scannese Ciambellone
- 500 g Flour 00 or 0
- 1.5 tsp Baking Powder
- 6 Medium Free Range Eggs
- 400 g Caster Sugar
- 130 g Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 200 g Whole or Semi-Skimmed Milk
- Zest 1 Un-waxed Lemon
- Pre-heat the oven to 150 C.
- Whisk the sugar and eggs together till pale.
- Combine the flour and baking powder, sieve into the egg mix slowly and mix thoroughly
- Warm the olive oil, milk and lemon zest in a large saucepan on a low heat.
- Slowly add the the flour & egg mixture and whisk into the milk till both mixtures are thoroughly combined.
- Grease and flour a bundt or ring tin and pour in enough to line the bottom of the tin. Add generous spoonfuls of chocolate spread or your favourite palm-oil free Nutella.
- Pop onto a baking tray and bake for 40-mins on the middle rack of the oven.
- Test the top of the cake with your fingers, it should spring back if it is done, to double check pop a skewer into the middle of the cake it should come out clean. Leave in the oven for another 5 minutes if it requires a little more time, or you prefer a darker crust and then another 5 minutes in the oven with the heat switched off and the door open.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin.
- Remove from tin and sprinkle with icing sugar.