Truth be told, this is not a traditional sharlotka. The few Russian recipes I found didn't actually use ricotta or even quince. But I went with it anyway. I love adding ricotta and sour cream to baked goods for added moisture...and quince is always a delight. Also, this is normally done in a large Springform pan; I wanted to make individual cakes.
Ingredients makes 12 individual cakes
- 4 C water
- 1 organic lemon peel
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 3-1/2 to 4 C quince, peeled and sliced
- 8 ounces whole milk ricotta
- 1/4 C softened butter
- 1/2 C organic granulated sugar
- 1 t vanilla paste
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 C milk
- 1 C flour
- 2 t baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 2 C poached quince, chopped
- Also needed: parchment paper, butter, cupcake tin
- poached quince
- organic powdered sugar
Combine all of the ingredients in a medium or large saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 60 to 75 minutes until the quince is tender and has turned a delicate shade of salmon pink. Drain and reserve poaching liquid. Remove cinnamon sticks and lemon peel. When cool enough to handle, chop about 2 C worth. Leave the rest of the slices whole for serving.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. While the oven heats, butter the cupcake hollows and cut parchment paper to line the bottom of each hollow. Set aside.
Whisk together ricotta, softened butter, sugar, vanilla paste, eggs, and milk. Fold in the dry ingredients until just moistened. Stir in the chopped quince.
Scoop 1/2 C batter into each hollow and place the pan in the oven. Bake until the top is golden and pops back up when pressed. Mine took about 50 minutes.
Dust with powdered sugar.
Arrange a few slices of poached quince on each plate.
This cake is moist and custardy on the inside and lightly caramelized on the outside. I can't wait to try this process with other fruits. I'm thinking apples next. Actually, I think apples might be traditional. Stay tuned...