Ciambella, Italian Lemon Sponge Cake is a traditional Italian ring shaped cake. It’s so incredibly light with an airy fluffy crumb and infused with both the juice and zest of lemons.
Italians are notoriously known for their dolci, or rather sweet treats. Especially those yummy morsels that we leisurely love to dip in a steaming cup of coffee, tea or even milk.
It’s customary for us to break our morning fast with a biscotto, cornetto (little horn) which is not unlike a French croissant or even a brioche.
After all, aren’t mornings made for this?.
And, have I mentioned how much we love our sweets?
What is a Ciambella?
Ciambella is essentially referred to any round shaped cake, doughnut or even tiny ring cookies such as these lemon glazed Ciambelle Cookies. And also these rope shaped Ciambelline al Vino Italian Wine Cookies.
Some would also call it Ciambellone, referring to its larger shape.
In terms of simplicity it probably doesn’t get much easier than this to make.
It’s all with ingredients you most likely already have on hand and you can whip up at a moments notice.
Ingredients for an Italian Lemon Sponge Cake
- baking powder
- vanilla extract
So simple right?
How to prepare a bundt pan for an Italian sponge cake
Decorative bundt pans can elevate a simple sponge cake to one of pretty elegance that would grace any table quite beautifully.
However, with all their intricate patterns and nooks and crevices, it can be quite a chore to release the cake with its pretty shape all intact.
I love, love decorative Bundt pans but although they have a non stick finish I always grease them.
One product I always use is Cake Release from Wilton. This is not a sponsored post and I’m not compensated in any way.
It has the consistency of softened butter and a little goes a long way.
- I use a pastry brush so that all the sides and crevices are properly coated. You’ll want to brush the centre cone as well.
- Hold up the pan near a light source just to make sure you don’t miss a spot. Trust me, I’ve learned this the hard way.
- With the Cake Release product I don’t need to flour my pan.
- If your choice of coating is melted butter, then consider using a pastry brush just the same for even distribution and then lightly dust with flour.
- Make sure to tap any excess flour out over your kitchen sink. You don’t want any gucky flour residue over your cake.
Having said that, if you have another foolproof method that works for you, then use that and maybe share it in the comments below.
I’d love to hear from you!
Other simple decorative Bundt cakes you might enjoy:
Ciambella, Italian Lemon Sponge Cake
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- lemon zest from 2 lemons
- 1/4 cup lemon juice freshly squeezed
- powdered sugar for dusting over the cake
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Grease a bundt pan and set aside.
- In a small bowl, sift together the flour and baking powder. Set aside.
- In a large bowl beat together the eggs with the sugar on medium high for about 2 minutes or until creamy and pale in colour.
- Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and beat well for another 2 minutes while stopping to scrape down the bowl if using a stand mixer.
- Add in the oil, water, vanilla, lemon zest and juice.
- Beat well until smooth and the batter falls into a ribbon like flow when the beaters are lifted.
- Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan.
- Bake for about 40 to 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown in colour and firm to the touch.
- Alternately, you can insert a skewer to check for doneness.
- If the skewer comes out clean, you'll know the cake is done.
- Let the cake cool in the bundt pan for 10 minutes.
- Loosen the edges with an offset spatula or butter knife. Take care not to scratch the non stick finish of your bundt pan.
- Gently invert onto a wire rack to release the cake and allow to cool completely.
- When ready to serve dust with powdered sugar, slice and enjoy!