The Leaven

  • 150 grams (5.3 ounces) warm milk
  • 3 grams (0.1 ounces) dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon (13 grams) sugar
  • 3 tablespoons (24 grams) flour

The Main Dough

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 120 grams (4.2 ounces) sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 0.5 teaspoon vanilla paste
  • 270 grams (9.5 ounces) flour
  • 50 grams (1.8 ounces) butter at room temperature


  • 1 egg white
  • 30 grams (1.1 ounces) almond flour
  • 30 grams (1.1 ounces) sugar


  • 80 grams (2.8 ounces) candied fruit
  • 100 milliliters (3.4 ounces) tea / cognac / orange juice
  • almond petals to taste


  • Mixing bowls

    You'll need several mixing bowls of various sizes for combining ingredients. Always use a non-metallic bowl for your leaven to ensure proper yeast activation.

  • Mixer with dough hook

    A stand mixer with a dough hook attachment is a lifesaver when kneading the dough for 25-30 minutes. It takes the hard work out of achieving that perfect gluten window!

  • Cling film

    Used to cover bowls and help maintain a warm environment for the dough to rise. Opt for biodegradable options if you're eco-conscious.

  • Paper molds

    Specific to making these traditional Easter cakes, these paper molds give them their unique shape and are easy to use and dispose of. Make sure they're sturdy enough to hold the expanding dough.

  • Wooden skewers

    Useful for testing for doneness and cooling the cakes. Make sure they are long enough to pierce through the center of the cake.


Step 1

Preparation: The calculation in the recipe is for three 9cm (3.55 inch) Easter cakes. Soak the candied fruits the day before cooking. For best results, use fresh candied fruits.

Step 2

Step 1: Mix the warm milk, yeast, sugar, and flour. Cover the bowl with cling film, and leave in a warm place for 1 hour. Ensure the milk is warm, not hot, to activate the yeast properly.

Step 3

Step 2: Mix the activated leaven with the yolks, sugar, lemon zest, vanilla, and flour (you may need a little more or less flour, so don't add all at once). When the ingredients are combined, add the butter, and knead the dough with a mixer for 25-30 minutes until a gluten window forms. Adding flour gradually will help achieve the perfect dough consistency.

Step 4

Step 3: Grease a large bowl with odorless vegetable oil, and place the dough in it. Cover with a film on top. Put the bowl in a warm place for 2-3 hours. The dough should increase at least three times. Then knead it, and stir in the soaked candied fruits. Spread the dough in paper molds, filling no more than 1/3. Cover with foil, and place in a warm place to proof. The dough should rise almost to the edges of the mold. Proper proofing is key to achieving light and airy cakes.

Step 5

Step 4: Bake the Easter cakes in the oven at 338°F (170°C) for about 20 minutes. Cover them with foil if necessary. Cool the cakes by piercing the bottom with a wooden skewer and flipping them upside down. Cooling the cakes upside down helps retain their shape.

Step 6

Step 5: Mix all the ingredients for the icing, and glaze the cakes carefully. Sprinkle the top with almond flakes. Apply the icing when the cakes are completely cool to prevent it from melting.


Enjoy your Easter cake the traditional way by serving it with a warm cup of tea or a fresh glass of orange juice. 🫖🍊 If you’re feeling adventurous, pair it with a splash of fine cognac to bring out the rich flavors of the candied fruits and almond glaze. 🍷

Looking to make it a part of a holiday feast? Serve it alongside a platter of fresh berries, a bowl of whipped cream, or even a light, tangy lemon curd. 🍓🍋 For a colorful and fun presentation, arrange slices of the cake around a centerpiece of decorated Easter eggs and nestle in some pastel-colored chocolates. 🐣🍫

For the best tasting experience, make sure to let the cake cool completely before slicing into it. The texture will be soft, airy, and perfectly moist. Enjoy this delightful Easter treat with your loved ones and celebrate in style! ✨


Gluten-Free Option 🌾

Replace the regular flour with a high-quality gluten-free blend. Brands that include xanthan gum are best, as they help mimic the elasticity of gluten.

Vegan Version 🌿

Swap the egg yolks with a vegan egg replacer (flax or chia seeds work well). Use plant-based butter instead of regular butter, and opt for almond or soy milk rather than dairy milk. For the icing, use aquafaba (the liquid from a can of chickpeas) instead of egg white.


  • How can I tell if my dough has risen enough?

    The dough should increase threefold in size and appear light and airy. You can also perform a "poke" test: press your finger lightly into the dough—if the indentation slowly springs back, it’s ready.

  • What do I do if my yeast doesn’t activate?

    Check the water temperature; it should be warm, not hot. Also, make sure your yeast isn’t expired. If all else fails, start with a fresh batch of yeast.

  • Why is my dough not forming a gluten window?

    Make sure you're kneading the dough long enough and at the right speed. Sometimes incorporating the butter too soon might interfere with gluten development, so follow the mixing steps carefully.

  • Can I use other fruits instead of candied fruits?

    Absolutely! Dried fruits like raisins, cranberries, or even apricots can be soaked and substituted. This will slightly alter the flavor but will still be delicious.

  • Why is my cake unevenly baked?

    Ensure that your oven temperature is accurate. You may need to rotate the cakes halfway through the baking time to ensure even heat distribution.

  • Can I freeze the Easter cake?

    Yes, the cake can be frozen. To maintain its quality, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and then foil. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight before serving.

Nutrition facts

Fluffy Italian Easter cake
Recipe Yield:3 cakes
Calories:Per cake
Calories (Min - Max):2200 - 2500
Total Fat:100g
Saturated Fat:50g
Total Carbohydrate:300g
Total Sugars:180g