Today I am sharing a recipe from my great aunt Norina who is now 95 years old. Norina left Italy when she was a young girl and emigrated to France to join her husband. She used to return to Italy regularly to visit her sisters and nephews. She was such a brilliant cook and this recipe was one of the best ones she passed on to my mother. This cake is ideal for spring/summer as it has fresh fruit and it is light.
This is a very simple sponge cake with no fat added. To moisten the sponge you need to soak it with either some liquor mixed with water (like rum) or fruit juice. I have used pineapple juice which seems to go so well with the freshness of the strawberries.
I was a child when my mother used to make this cake over and over again. When I was 13 I started making it myself as it was so simple to prepare.
I have served it with whipped cream as it goes well with strawberries but it is nice just on its own too.
- Prep Time : 25 minutes
- Cook Time : 23 minutes
Take the eggs out of the fridge and let them cool down at room temperature.
Whip the egg whites with half of the sugar until really firm. Whip the yolks with the remaining sugar until pale and creamy.
Gently stir in the egg whites with the yolks and add the flour sifted with the zest of the lemon and the juice.
Stir well and pour onto a well greased mold measuring approx 22cm or 9 inch, level it well with a spatula and bake at 180C or 350F for about 15 to 20 minutes or until golden on top.
Let the cake cool down, remove it from the mold. Put it on a serving dish and moisten it with the pineapple juice.
Wash and slice the strawberries as thinly as you can and place them nicely on the cake.
Put the jam in a saucepan with 2 tbsp of water and melt it over a source of heat whilst stirring all the time for a few minutes.
Brush the strawberries with the jam and serve with whipped cream if you wish.