Simply Italian and Classic Italian Sponge Cake

People are connected in all kinds of crazy ways.  I was at a family barbeque this summer and, upon hearing that I lived in London, an extended family member mentioned that her daughter in law was Welsh and had actually been travelling back and forth quite a bit for her new cookbook she had written with her sisters.  Wait a minute?  “Is she a Chiappa sister?” I asked, thinking of a cookbook I’d received a couple of weeks earlier.  It turns out that she was, which has led to the very surreal situation of having been sent a cookbook which was written by a cousin-in-law – and evidence that the world is a very small place!

The Chiappa sisters are from rural Wales who make food based on their Italian heritage (both of their parents come from Italy originally) and so their recipes from Simply Italian include authentic Italian recipes, modern British cuisine with an Italian twist (like the panetonne bread and butter pudding) and some of their favourite recipes of various origin (including one from my extended family, Chiappa in laws.)  Modern Italian cookbooks often focus primarily on pasta, so Beardy Fiance was pretty excited that this contained plenty of recipes featuring meat (a nice steak with pancetta and a marsala chicken recipe went over particularly well.)  I’d really recommend this for people who are less interested in necessarily the basics of Italian food and more interested in modern Italian with a British twist.

SimplyItalian-PostClassic Italian Sponge Cake (from Simply Italian)


5 medium eggs (make sure to measure these in their shells – this is going to be your base weight for ingredients)

Equal amount of unsalted butter

Equal amounts of caster sugar

Equal amounts of self raising flour

2 tablespoons milk

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

IngredientsWeigh eggs in their shell and cream with caster sugar.

Weigh eggs in their shells and cream with sugarMix in an equal amount of softened unsalted butter.

Mix in an equal amount of unsalted butterSift in dry ingredients (the flour should be an equal amount to the eggs, butter and sugar.)

Sift in dry ingredientsGrease a bundt tin very well and pour in batter.

Pour in batterBake at 180C for about 40 minutes, until the cake is golden brown.  Allow to cool, then slice and serve.

Classic Italian Sponge CakeI received a copy of Simply Italian from Penguin UK to review – I do have family connections to the authors, but all opinions are my own.  This review also contains affiliate links.


One comment

  1. Great book – I really enjoyed it after watching the series last year. My boyfriend is from the Welsh valleys, and the family has Italian connections through marriage, so I read it with great interest. Lovely recipes!

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