We were completely spoiled at breakfast during our week at Giulia's wonderful Locanda della Valle Nuova in northern Le Marche. Every morning there were three kinds of home made breads, juices, fruit, tomatoes, jams, yogurt, cereal, cheese or ham, and we enjoyed these with plenty of coffee in the cheerful dining room. Giulia made a delicious "sweet breakfast cake" called Ciambella that was everyone's favorite. It was somewhere between a cake and a cookie, and cut in thin slices like a big biscotti. She generously gave me the recipe on our last morning.
When I read the recipe (in grams, not ounces), I wasn't sure about one of the ingredients, so Giulia explained that it is Italian baking powder (vanilla flavored). We ran to the grocery store to bring home a couple boxes. Now I can make Ciambella for breakfast any time I want.
There are as many recipes for Ciambella as there are Italian nonnas! It tastes like butter and sugar with vanilla and a little lemon zest. The recipe is not mine to share, but a google search will get you close. A couple of years ago, I also made a ciambella ring which is shown on the Pomodori and Vino blog and is in Marcella's Essentials of Italian Cooking. The ingredients are flour, melted butter, sugar, baking powder, lemon zest and eggs. Giulia's dough comes together easily, and is baked in two "buns" sprinkled with a little sugar. Bake, slice and serve. Prepare for your kitchen to smell like sugar cookies!
My first attempt turned out a little flatter than Giulia's, but were DELICIOUS!
All you need is a great cup of coffee!