Blueberry, Ricotta (Anari) and Almond bake

Blueberry-anari cake.jpg

I didn’t grow up on blueberries. In fact, I first tasted fresh blueberries in London, about ten years ago. Even though I am lucky enough to live on an island that produces all kinds of fresh fruits and vegetables in abundance, Cyprus is just too warm for blueberries. I absolutely love this tiny berry that stains your mouth blue. Luckily I can now buy them fresh from my local supermarket, but frozen ones are a really good alternative.

This delicious blueberry slice, is something between a cake and a cheesecake. I got inspired for this cake/cheesecake, by a recipe I found on the “King Arthur Flour” site. I used “Anari” cheese, a Cyprus version of low fat ricotta. The base is a buttery, lemony, almond cake with blueberries. The topping is like a low fat but creamy cheesecake. The best thing about this cake is that you can mix it in a food processor or -even better- in your Thermomix. You just throw everything in, blend and spread in your pan. Repeat process with the topping and you are done.

blueberry-anari 3.jpg

Ingredients for the base

  • ¼ cup unblanched almonds
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 80 grams unsalted butter (1/3 cup)
  • ¼ cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tbs lemon zest
  • 2 Tbs lemon juice
  • 1 ½ cup blueberries (frozen are fine), mixed with 2 tsp plain flour

For the topping

  • 300 grams unsalted “anari” cheese or ricotta
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbs lemon juice

Method

Preheat oven to 160 C. Butter the base and the sides of a square, 23 cm (9”) brownie pan. Cover base and sides with greaseproof paper, leaving some hanging from the sides (you will later use this paper to lift the cake out of the pan.

Put almonds on a baking tray and bake for 6-7 minutes until fragrant and nicely roasted. Put in the bowl of a food processor or Thermomix and pulse until coarsely ground. Increase oven temperature to 175 C.

Add in the processor bowl, the remaining ingredients for the base, in the order given, except the blueberries. Blend until everything is combined. Don’t over do it. Spread cake batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle all over the flour coated blueberries (if using frozen, do not thaw).

Rince the processor bowl and add the “Anari” or ricotta, honey, eggs and lemon juice. Blend until smooth. Spread mixture on top of the blueberries. Level top with a spatula or a spoon.

Bake for 50 minutes until top is golden and set. Leave slice to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Lift slice out of the pan using the greaseproof paper. Leave to cool completely (if you can last that long!) before slicing and serving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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