Adapted from Dolce Italiano: Desserts from the Babbo Kitchen
3/4 cup cake flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 stick unsalted butter
3/4 cup ricotta (I used part skim but drained off any whey)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 vanilla bean
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350ºF.
Position a rack in the center.
Butter & flour a loaf pan.
In a medium bowl, sift together cake flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside.
Cream together butter, ricotta, and sugar on medium speed until smooth and light, about 2 minutes.
Beat in eggs, one at a time, scraping down sides of the bowl after each addition.
Split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape out seeds with blunt side of a small knife, then beat them into batter along with vanilla extract.
On low speed, beat in dry ingredients to combine them, scrape down sides of the bowl, and beat batter for 30 seconds on medium speed.
Gently drop the pan on the on the counter gently a few times to remove air bubbles.
Bake cake for 15 minutes, then turn the pan 375 degrees to ensure even browning. Lower the temperature to 325 and continue baking until the cake springs back lightly when touched, the sides have begun to pull away from the pan, and a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, about 25 to 35 minutes more.
Allow cake to cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then carefully invert it onto the rack to cool completely.