Caterina Riccomagno, Lis Hotel, Asti, Italy
This is Caterina’s own version of Piedmont, Italy’s regional classic Nocciole Cake, traditionally made with hazelnuts. She prefers to use walnuts and chocolate to make the cake even richer. When Rich and I sampled it from the hotel’s breakfast buffet, we found it irresistible. It’s normally served as a dessert after dinner, with a sweet regional dessert wine such as Moscato Passito.
150 grams butter, softened
150 grams walnuts, chopped fine
150 grams sugar
150 grams flour
1 packet baking powder (16 grams)
Pinch of salt
150 grams chocolate (70% dark) grated
Whisk together eggs and sugar, add butter. Sift together flour and baking powder, fold gently into mixture. Add a pinch of salt. At the end add the walnuts and the dark chocolate. Optional: add a tablespoon of rum.
Grease and lightly flour a 9-inch baking pan. Pour batter into pan and bake at 170 or 180 C for 40 minutes.
What the cook recommends: Serve with Moscato Passito wine.
For more on Italian recipes, wine, and food lore, see my post:
How to Create Your Own Comfort Food Tour of Italy.
These recipes are being collected on a Mediterranean Comfort Food Tour, a five-month journey around the Mediterranean rim exploring what food can tech us about other cultures — and our own.
See all my Comfort Food Recipes.