Florentine Easter Cake

Easter cake
Sofie Delauw / Getty Images
  • 50 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 1 cake (serves 6-8 )

The more traditional recipes for this classic, orange-flavored Florentine Easter cake call for lard and require making a starter loaf with yeast. This recipe, pried by my mother-in-law from Il Rossino, a pastry chef in Florence's Via Centostelle, does not, and is good enough to be eaten year-round. It's tasty as-is and wonderfully filled with whipped cream, crema pasticcera (pastry cream), or whipped cream.

What You'll Need

  • 2 cups and 1 tablespoon (250 g) all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 cup minus 1 tablespoon (200 g) granulated sugar
  • 4 tablespoons sunflower or corn oil
  • 7 tablespoons warm milk
  • 2 eggs
  • Juice and zest of 1 orange
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • Garnish: Confectioner's sugar

How to Make It

  1. Preheat your oven to 360 F (180 C).
  2. Beat the eggs, and mix all the ingredients together except the confectioner's sugar; you will obtain a fairly liquid batter.
  3. Sift in the baking powder and pour the batter into an 8 by 12-inch pan.
  4. Bake the schiacciata for 20 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out dry.
  5. Once the schiacciata has cooled, remove it from the pan and dust it well with the confectioner's sugar (make sure the schiacciata is cool, or the sugar will take on a bitter taste).

    Note: Schiacciata alla fiorentina is an ideal cake for stuffing, either with a generous layer of lightly sweetened whipped cream, or with crema pasticcera or Crema Chantilly. In either case, slice the cake open as if it were a book, spread a layer of filling over the bottom half, and replace the upper half.