Saturday, December 7, 2013

Tiramisu Cake

Tiramisu is one of my parents' favorite desserts. It's not incredibly difficult to make at home, provided you can actually find decent ladyfingers at a store. However, it's one of those desserts that has to be kept cold, and can take up a decent amount of space in a fridge. This isn't usually an issue, except around the holidays, when fridge space is at a bare minimum. 

This cake has all of the wonderful flavors of tiramisu, but as a cake instead of a layered dessert. Even better, it can be kept at room temperature! The cake itself has a great crumb, not quite as heavy as a traditional pound cake, but still rich. The addition of Kahlua and espresso batters yield the classic tiramisu flavor, and the mascarpone frosting pulls everything together. 

The key point to remember when making this cake is to remember not to mix or swirl your batters; they have different densities, and will layer beautifully on their own. Instead of pouring the batters into the pan, I suggest carefully spooning the batters in. Other than that, this is really easy yet impressive! 

Tiramisu Cake
adapted from Baking Bites

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 cups milk (whole or 2%)
1/4 cup espresso
1/4 cup Kahlua
1/4 cup unsalted butter (1/2 stick) , room temperature
4oz mascarpone cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup Kahlua
2 cups confectioner's/powdered sugar

Prepare the Cake: Grease and flour a 12-cup Bundt pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt together.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until combined. Beat in the vanilla extract.

Add the flour mixture and milk to the egg mixture, alternating between the two and ending with flour, mixing just until everything is incorporated. 

Remove 1 cup of batter and place in a small bowl. Add the espresso and whisk until combined. 

Remove another cup of batter and place in a small bowl. Add the Kahlua and whisk until combined.

Pour 1/2 of the remaining "plain" batter evenly into the Bundt pan. Spread evenly with a spatula.

Add the Kahlua batter in dollops, GENTLY spreading it evenly over the plain batter layer. Do not stir or swirl the layers. 

Add the espresso batter in dollops, GENTLY spreading it evenly over the Kahlua layer. Do not stir or swirl the layers.

Finally, add the remaining "plain" batter in dollops, GENTLY spreading it evenly over the espresso layer without stirring or swirling the layers.

Bake in a 325° oven for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Let cool in pan for 20 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack and cool completely.

Prepare the Frosting: Combine the butter, mascarpone cheese, Kahlua and confectioner's/powdered sugar in a mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until fluffy and smooth. Apply to the cooled cake in a thick, even layer. 

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