Mastering the Lemon Torta Caprese: Secrets From the Amalfi Coast (VIDEO)
The Lemon Torta Caprese cake is a twist on the classic Neapolitan dessert Caprese. Instead of using dark chocolate like the original recipe, this version incorporates white chocolate and lemon zest. This combination gives the cake a delightful Mediterranean scent and taste.
You’re going to love this Lemon Torta Caprese Cake recipe! It’s so delicious and refreshing with its lemony flavor. The texture is amazing – it’s light, fluffy, and moist with a slight crunch. I’ve tried many lemon cakes before, but this one is definitely my favorite. Let me walk you through the steps of making this traditional white caprese cake. I promise you won’t regret trying this simple yet classic recipe in your kitchen.
The Origins of the Lemon Torta Caprese
I recently made the most amazing gluten-free cake called the Lemon Caprese cake! It was actually created by a pastry chef on the island of Capri back in the early 1900s, but it was a happy accident. However, the classic Caprese Cake became a hit because of its unique texture: creamy and soft on the inside, with a slightly crumbly and crunchy exterior. Then, in 2007, a talented pastry chef named Salvatore De Riso from Amalfi came up with a delightful twist on the original recipe by adding coastal lemons and white chocolate. Trust me, it’s absolutely delicious!
Step-by-Step Recipe for the Best Lemon Torta Caprese
There are various versions and variations of the classic recipe for lemon caprese, including one without white chocolate. Today, I’ll be sharing with you the original recipe for lemon caprese from the book “I Dolci del Sole” by Maestro De Riso. In this book, the author shares childhood memories and recipes, set against the backdrop of olive groves and fishing villages along the coast.
And the key ingredient in this amazing lemon caprese is precisely the fragrant and authentic lemons from the Amalfi coast, which the master chef specifically uses. The preparation is quite simple, just follow the cooking instructions carefully, and you’ll have the perfect lemon caprese!
Lemon Caprese is an ideal dessert to enjoy after a meal or dinner. It can also be served as a delightful snack to impress your friends and sophisticated guests, accompanied by a nice cup of tea or a liqueur. It’s even suitable for celebrating birthdays or remembering special occasions. Indulge in this dessert, and you’ll surely fall in love with it! Success is absolutely guaranteed!
Ingredients for an Authentic Lemon Torta Caprese
Lemon Torta Caprese it’s a cake made with almond flour and therefore a delicious gluten-free dessert suitable for those with food intolerances. These are the ingredients:
- White chocolate bar
- Blanched almonds (reduced to flour with a blender) or almond flour
- Icing sugar
- Potato starch
- Baking powder
- Grated zest of organic lemons – To make a fragrant lemon Caprese like those found in pastry shops, it’s important to select the right lemons. Look for fresh lemons with leaves and stems. The freshest lemons have branches and retain their fragrance. Ideally, lemons from the coastal regions are preferred. However, if you can’t find lemons from Amalfi or Sorrento, don’t worry. You can use untreated lemons with green leaves still attached to achieve excellent results.
- Candied lemon peel, diced (optional) – The original recipe from the master chef includes candied lemon zest to give the dessert a wonderful aroma. However, if you’re not a fan of them, feel free to leave them out. You can easily purchase candied lemon zests from your favorite pastry shop or online, or make them at home using this recipe: Take the peel of 1 lemon and cut it into strips. Cook the strips in a pan with 2 tablespoons of water and 3 tablespoons of sugar for approximately 10 minutes. Once the water has evaporated, the zests are ready. Allow them to cool, and then finely chop them with a knife.
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Granulated sugar
- Vanilla extract or vanilla pod or a sachet of vanillin
TOOLS YOU MAY NEED
How to Make the Lemon Caprese Cake
Mix the dry ingredients. In a bowl add the mix of almond flour, icing sugar, white chocolate, grated zest of the lemons, potato starch, and baking powder. Gradually add the extra virgin olive oil and gently mix the mixture. Set aside.
Mix the wet ingredients. Whip the eggs with the granulated sugar and the vanilla until you obtain a frothy, clear mixture, tripled in volume.
Combine. Add the whipped eggs to the almond and white chocolate mixture. Mix slowly from bottom to top. Grease and flour the mold.
Bake. Pour the mixture into the mold and bake in the preheated oven to 200 °C (392 °F) for 5 minutes, without opening the door. Then lower the oven to 165 °C (330 °F) and let your lemon caprese bake for another 45 minutes. After the cooking time, do the toothpick test! Take the cake out of the oven and let it cool for 10 minutes in the mold. Turn it upside down on a serving plate or on a cake rack and allow it to cool completely before decorating and serving!
Lemon Torta Caprese Video Recipe
How to Garnish the Authentic Lemon Caprese Cake
Here’s a tip to make a lemon Caprese that isn’t overly sweet: never decorate it when it’s hot! By doing this, the icing sugar won’t seep into the cake, but instead, it will stay on the surface.
Once the cake is thoroughly chilled, you can sprinkle it with icing sugar or use decorative cake disks to create a pattern on the surface of your Caprese. Just place the stencils for cake decoration on top of your lemon Caprese, sprinkle some powdered sugar, and gently lift it off.
In the video I cut out some flowers with baking paper, I placed them on top of the cake, and then sprinkled with icing sugar. Removing the baking paper, delicious drawings will remain on the cake! Then I decorated the cake with lemon slices and fresh mint leaves.
Now you’ll have the original lemon Caprese, with its strong lemon and white chocolate aroma, ready to be enjoyed!
White Torta Caprese Storage Instructions
You can totally leave your Caprese cake out at room temperature for about 4 days. It’s even better if you cover it with a glass cake dome! Just remember, the Lemon Caprese cake should never be stored in the fridge. If you need to freeze it, you can do so for up to 2 months and then thaw it out to serve at room temperature.
Lemon Caprese Cake Wine Pairing
When it comes to pairing wines and liqueurs with lemon Caprese cake, there are a couple of delightful options to consider.
One excellent choice is a glass of sweet and aromatic sparkling wine, such as Moscato. Its pleasant sweetness and aromatic qualities complement the tangy lemon flavors of the cake perfectly. Another fantastic option is a glass of Limoncello, a lemon liqueur. The citrus notes of Limoncello harmonize beautifully with the zesty flavors of the cake, creating a delightful combination.
So, whether you opt for a glass of Moscato or indulge in a sip of Limoncello, both choices will enhance your enjoyment of the lemon Caprese cake.
Mastering the Lemon Torta Caprese: Secrets From the Amalfi Coast
- 180 g white chocolate bar
- 200 g blanched almonds or almond flour
- 120 g icing sugar
- 50 g potato starch
- 5 g baking powder
- Grated zest of 2 organic lemons
- 30 g candied lemon peel diced (optional)
- 100 g extra virgin olive oil
- 5 eggs
- 60 g granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or the seeds of 1/2 pod or 1/2 sachet of vanillin
- Combine the peeled almonds and icing sugar in a mixer. Activate a few seconds and let it pulverize. Skip this step if you’re using an almond meal.
- Chop the white chocolate very finely with a large-bladed knife.
- In a bowl, add the mix of almonds and icing sugar, the starch and baking powder, the white chocolate, the grated peel of the lemons, and the candied fruit if you use them. Gradually add the extra virgin olive oil and turn with a spatula, gently mixing the mixture. You will get a thick and pasty mixture. Set aside.
- Now it’s time to butter and flour the mold (I use almond flour or potato starch). Preheat the oven to 200 °C.
- Whip the eggs with the granulated sugar and vanilla with an electric whisk for at least 5–6 minutes, until you obtain a frothy, clear mixture, tripled in volume.
- Add the whipped eggs by the spoonful to the almond and white chocolate mixture. Mix with a spatula from bottom to top, slowly adding the egg mixture. The dough will be quite liquid and full of very small pieces of chocolate and almonds! That’s exactly how it should be.
- Pour the mixture into the mold or cook in the oven at 200 °C for 5 minutes, without opening the door. Lower the oven to 165 °C and let your lemon caprese cook for another 45 minutes.
- After the cooking time, always do the toothpick test! The lemon caprese must be moist inside, soft and truffled but not soft or runny!!
- Take the cake out of the oven, and let it cool for 10 minutes in the mold.
- At this point, you can turn it out of the mold, turning it upside down, on a serving plate, or a cake rack. The lemon caprese must be turned upside down even if you are using a springform pan, because as tradition dictates, the surface must be flat and the edges perfectly squared!
- Allow to cool completely before decorating and serving!