Italians in Naples get very excited when the Carnival Season approaches. The city becomes colorful, bursts joy and happiness. Above all, this is the time to make some pretty scrumptious recipes. During the Carnival a real Neapolitan will always eat a piece of Migliaccio, this mouth-watering cake is a reminder of the old times when food was just a matter of easy to find ingredients.
The Migliaccio, a traditional recipe from Campania, the region where Naples is located, is a sort of light cheesecake, known as a ricotta cake or “ricotta pie”. Migliaccio is made with very simple ingredients. The origin of the name is from “miglio” (millet), with which it used to be made.
Today, we propose a tender, light and moist, variation of the traditional recipe. A Migliaccio made of Martino’s Couscous: delicately flavored with orange zest, not too heavy or too sweet, perfectly suited for an afternoon snack, for tea-time, or even for breakfast.
Here is how to prepare the Couscous Migliaccio:
- 120 ml of whole milk
- 1 knob of unsalted butter
- 100 grams of Martino Couscous
- 250 grams of ricotta cheese
- 4 eggs
- 250 grams of granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon of orange extract
- ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- ½ orange zest
- 100 grams raisins
- powdered sugar as needed
- Servings: 6 persons
- Preparation: 15 minutes
- Baking 45-50 minutes
Hydrate the couscous:
In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, over medium heat, pour 120ml whole milk and add a knob of unsalted butter. Bring everything to a simmer so the milk is warm and the butter melted. Turn off the heat and pour evenly 100 grams of Martino Couscous. Let the couscous slowly absorb all the milk and butter for about 4-5 minutes. After the necessary time, fluff the couscous with the help of a fork.
Preparing the ricotta:
In a large bowl, pour 250 grams of ricotta cheese and stir it for a while with a wooden spoon to make it creamy. When ready add the couscous and mix to obtain an amalgamated mixture.
Preparing the eggs:
Use a whisk to beat 2 eggs and the sugar in a separate bowl. Whisk until well blended.
Re-hydrate the raisins:
To give to the Migliaccio that extra depth and added fruity flavor place 100 grams of raisins in a bowl and pour warm water to cover. They will soften in minutes. When the fruit plumps up strain well and set aside while you prepare the rest of the recipe.
Put everything together:
Combine the eggs and sugar mix with your ricotta and couscous. For a smooth and homogeneous result make sure to pour the eggs in small increments stirring well each time. You need to obtain a lump-free mixture. When everything is well combined is time to add some aromatic touches and fruity flavors. Add 1/2 teaspoon of orange extract, ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon, orange zest and toss in the softened raisins. Stir to mix well.
You are now ready to bake this melt-in-the-mouth Couscous Migliaccio! Line a baking pan with parchment paper to avoid the Migliaccio from sticking and then pour the mixture inside. Bake in a preheated oven for about 45/50 minutes at 190 ° C.
You know the Migliaccio is evenly baked and ready to remove from the oven when the cake is firm and the top is golden brown. When ready, take out of the oven and let it cool down.
Couscous Migliaccio is best when served cold or at room temperature. Only sprinkle the powdered sugar just before serving, otherwise it will be easily absorbed by the cake and make it too sweet.
As the Neapolitan tradition requires: enjoy the delicious Couscous Migliaccio chattering with friends over cups full of creamy cappuccino and don’t forget to subscribe to the newsletter to receive all the delicious Martino’s couscous recipes directly in your inbox!
Migliaccio is certainly a Carnival cake by tradition, but there is no reason why you should not make it on other occasions. With Martino’s Couscous and fresh ricotta cheese this recipe is very easy to make, soft, healthy and simply delicious. It will fill your home with orange scent and will delight your family and friends.
Go ahead try it out and leave a comment to tell us on which occasion would you serve Couscous Migliaccio.