This is the Best Fig Cake recipe: it has layers of moist olive oil cake, honey ricotta and whipped ricotta cream piled on top! Fresh figs are inside and adorn the top! Finish with a generous drizzle of honey for a showstopping dessert!
Generally speaking I eat just about everything with a few notable exceptions: beets, figs, papaya, and dates.
You’re like, “Hold UP! You just told us this was the best fig cake ever, how would you even know?!” You are feeling lied to and maybe a little deceived. I see you. I emphatically understand.
At least let me explain…
I feel like I *should* like all these foods. I *want* to like them, so my solution to this culinary problem is to keep trying!
Except papayas. I have accepted that I will never like the Wanna-Be Mangos. Posers.
My love of mangoes is well-documented and I’ve accepted that papayas will forever be their mushy cousins. ?
Back to the figs! About two years ago I was training a new sous-chef. We received a delivery from the farmer’s market with a flat of fresh figs. I made my (very strong, yet regrettable) feelings about figs known to her, and she convinced me that maybe the problem was that I hadn’t tried the right fig. Ever the optimist, I let her select the perfect fig from the group and then I tried it with an open mind (eyes closed).
She was right. Fresh, still warm, perfectly ripe market figs are life-changing. I opened my eyes and declared that we would be “stealing” some of the figs from the boys (the savory chefs). I don’t remember what special I was originally making that day, but I know that I immediately set out to make an orange ricotta cheesecake with orange honey figs.
You can add fresh chopped figs to the cakes if you so desire. When the figs are good, I just want them au naturale. A little honey, a lot of ricotta and some moist olive oil cake. Damn life is good.
Orange Olive Oil Cake
- 330 g Olive Oil
- 3 Eggs
- 1 Orange zested
- 540 g Sugar
- 270 g Milk
- 100 g Orange Juice
- 6 g Baking powder
- 3 g Baking soda
- 2 g Salt
- 350 g All-purpose flour
- 454 g Ricotta
- 1 tablespoon Honey
- 2 teaspoons Confectioner’s Sugar (or honey if you’d like)
- ½ teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 390 g Heavy Cream (cold)
- 2 dry pints Fresh Figs (quartered)
Bake the Cake:
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray and line 2, 9-inch cake pans with parchment.
- Zest orange into sugar and allow to sit while measuring remaining ingredients.
- In a bowl whisk together baking powder, baking soda, salt and flour; set aside.
- In a large bowl whisk together the oil, eggs, sugar, zest, and milk.
- Whisk in the dry ingredients until very few lumps remain.
- Divide between prepared pans. You can add some chopped figs at this point. They will sink to the bottom but will be delicious all the same! Bake in preheated oven, 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and the center gives some resistance when pressed lightly.
- Allow to cool completely in their pans before turning out onto a rack or directly on the cake stand!
Make the Ricotta Whipped Cream & Filling:
- I like to blend my ricotta with a food processor or immersion blender so that it is completely smooth before using it for the filling or in whipped cream. This is personal preference but I suggest you try it once my way!
- Process the ricotta until smooth. Then reserve about 1 cup of it for the whipped cream.
- Mix 1 tablespoon of honey with the remaining ricotta for the filling. Place in the refrigerator until ready to use. The firmer the filling, the better. Some of this depends on how much moisture is in the ricotta you are using.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine reserved 1 cup ricotta, confectioner’s sugar, extract and heavy cream. Beat on high until stiff peaks form. Place in the refrigerator until ready to use.
- Unmold cake onto a cake plate or cake stand. Spread ricotta honey filling on the top. You can top with slices of fresh figs if you would like.
- Unmold the second layer and place on top of the ricotta filling.
- Mound all the whipped cream on top and then pile on the figs! Drizzle with honey and serve.
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