A delicious cake that sashays into gateau territory.
This is a rich, indulgent cake is inspired by the classic Tiramisu. I first made this cake many years ago as a bit of an experiment, but it is now one that I make often.
I went with a chocolate collar surround for this cake: partly as a homage to the first recipe I had published professionally in a Food magazine many years ago – my white chocolate, strawberry and passionfruit cake:
However, you can omit the chocolate collar and let the layers remain visible.
The Tiramisu filling and topping here might not be traditional (I don’t use the raw egg in there and I include a bit of yoghurt for a gentle tang) but it is silky and luscious.
Recipe: Tiramisu cake -makes one 7” cake
- 4 medium eggs
- 80g self-raising flour
- 20g cocoa powder
- 100g caster sugar
- about 100ml very strong espresso coffee
- 2 tablespoons caster sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- 3 tablespoons alcohol of choice: Marsala, rum, Amaretto…(optional)
Filling and topping:
- 500g mascarpone cheese (2 tubs)
- 120g good quality white chocolate, melted and cooled
- 100g yoghurt (not full fat!)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- 3-4 tablespoons of the coffee soak
- 100g melted dark chocolate or, for marbling, a mixture of dark and white
- a couple of tablespoons of chopped or grated dark chocolate
- cocoa powder to dust over the top
You will need three 7” cake tins, greased and base-lined
(1) Preheat the oven 160C (fan).
(2) Make the sponge: whisk the eggs and sugar in a bowl for about 10 minutes using an electric whisk: or until the mixture turns pale, moussey and holds it shape.
(3) Fold in the flour carefully until no flour is visible: make sure you check the bottom of the bowl where flour can lurk!
(4) Spoon evenly into the cake tins and bake for 16-20 minutes, or until well risen, golden brown and just pulling away from the tin. Leave to cool in the tins for a few minutes before turning out to wire racks to cool fully.
(5) Make the coffee mixture: mix the four ingredients together, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Taste and add more sugar if you want it sweeter or more alcohol if you prefer a stronger kick.
(6) Make the Tiramisu mixture: adding the mascarpone, yoghurt and vanilla to a bowl and either beat with a wooden spoon for a few moments to blend or whisk with a balloon whisk.
(7) Add the cooled white chocolate and whisk well until you get a smooth mixture.
(8) Whisk in 3 tablespoons of the coffee mixture and taste: add a little more coffee mixture if you want it punchier.
(9) Assemble: take a cooled sponge and place on a large serving plate or cake board. Spoon over some of the coffee mixture. Spread about a third of the Tiramisu mixture on top and place another of the sponges. Repeat until you have the three layers of sponge (each with a spoonful or so of the coffee mixture drizzled over.)
(10) Spread or pipe most of the remaining Tiramisu mixture on top and use a palette knife to spread the rest around the sides of the cake.
(11) Make the chocolate collar: cut a rectangular sheet of greaseproof (or acetate) with length a little longer than the circumference of the cake and height a little more than the depth of the cake. Spread the melted chocolate over it, leaving a little gap at one short end which will help you lift it up, and give the greaseproof a gentle shake to flatten the chocolate. You want this to be fairly thinly spread: any excess melted chocolate can be set and stored in a jar for using at a later time.
NB: for a marbled effect, add spoons of each melted chocolate randomly, and very lightly run a palette knife over the top to blend slightly.
(12) Leave this strip of chocolate for about 5 minutes until it is sticky but no longer runny – but make sure it does not set: especially if it is cold in the kitchen! Carefully life up the chocolate strip and place around the cake, using the palms of your hand to lightly smooth it around the cake.
(13) Place the cake in the fridge for about 30 minutes or until the chocolate has set and then carefully peel off the greaseproof: you will be left with a smooth chocolate collar surrounding the cake.
(14) Scatter the chopped/grated chocolate around the base and on the top in the gaps between the collar and the topping. Dust the top of the cake lightly with cocoa powder and pop the cake back into the fridge until you are ready to serve.