Torta sbrisolona (Crumbly Cake)


Torta sbrisolona is literally translated as ‘crumbly cake’ from the dialect of Mantua. This very affluent city is where a classic, simple peasants’ treat evolved into a more refined cake with relatively more expensive ingredients during the Reinassance.


- 200 g OO-type flour

- 200 g finely ground corn flour

- 200 g sugar

- 100 g butter

- 100 g lard

- 150 g peeled almonds

- 50 g unpeeled almonds

- 1 grated lemon rind

- 2 egg yolks

- Vanilla seeds from 1 pod


Put all the almonds together, put 50 g of them aside and roughly blend the rest. Place the ground almonds in a bowl with the butter and the lard, knead a little then add the flours and the lemon rind. Knead it all together with your hands, but not too much or the mix will get too warm ruining the result. Now add 150 grams of sugar, the vanilla seeds and go for another round of kneading. The final step will be pouring the yolks in and amalgamating them by hand. Butter a cake pan (about 30 cm wide). Now take your mix and rain it in the pan crumbling it as much as possible with your fingers: you don’t want it to settle in a compact slate. When only one third of the mix remains, knead the remaining almonds into it and crumble this too into the pan. Finally, sprinkle the remaining sugar on the surface. Cook the cake in the oven at 180 C° for about 50 minutes. Allow it to completely cool, and enjoy a traditional recipe from Italy!