Around the Table
Julia Busuttil Nishimura
Slow Sundays are for herbed roast chicken and silky smooth panna cotta. Eating outside means cheddar scones and fresh, spring salads. Friends coming by for afternoon coffee calls for a simple blackberry yoghurt loaf or comforting ginger cake with cream cheese frosting.
Beloved home cook Julia Busuttil Nishimura always knows the right dish for the occasion, weather or time of day. She also understands the power food has to bring people together, whether that’s to prepare a meal or enjoy the delicious results.
With recipes ranging from quick, flavourful meals for busy weeknights to simple indulgences for summer feasts, Around the Table perfectly matches dishes to time and place. It includes recipes laden with personal meaning – Mediterranean classics from Italy and Malta, and Japanese dishes Julia has learned from her husband, Nori – that will soon become favourites around your table, too.
“It is no secret that I love ricotta and extra-virgin olive oil. These two ingredients have featured heavily in my cooking since I was young. Here they marry in this very simple cake where the ricotta provides
fluffiness and the olive oil adds richness and a very moist crumb. This is one of those back-pocket recipes that can be whipped up at a moment’s notice, with no special equipment necessary.” p79
Ricotta and Orange Olive Oil Cake
250 g caster sugar
zest of 2 oranges
100 ml freshly squeezed orange juice
150 ml extra-virgin olive oil
250 g (1 cup) fresh full-fat ricotta
250 g (1 ⅔ cups) self-raising flour
pure icing sugar, for dusting (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease and line a 23 cm round cake tin. Place the sugar and orange zest in a large bowl. Rub the orange zest into the sugar until it is damp and fragrant. Whisk in the eggs until combined. Add the orange juice and pour in the olive oil. Add the ricotta and whisk it all together, then gently mix in the flour until just combined.
Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then remove from the tin and continue to cool on a wire rack. Once cool, dust with icing sugar if desired, then serve.
The cake will keep in an airtight container for 3–4 days.
Around the Table by Julia Busuttil Nishimura, published by Plum, RRP $44.99,
photography by Armelle Habib