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This blog is a culmination of two forever-bakers who have spent countless hours reading about, thinking about, and dreaming about baking delicious treats in our spare time. After taking a few cake decorating classes, our interest has soared to no end. While living and working in the same city has been a sweet treat in itself, a move across the state has spawned the desire to keep in touch by taking our love of baking and everything kitchen to the next level. So wipe your feet on the mat and stay awhile!


Friday, February 11, 2011

Tiramisu Cake

I have always had issues with tiramisu. It's crunchy, mushy, moist, and dry all in the same bite. It is a confusing dessert in my opinion. That being said, my husband always mentions two things when I ask him what I should make: tiramisu and creme brulee. I still haven't filled my kitchen torch with gas (or whatever it is that goes in there.....), and I think that he's probably okay with that considering I will most likely burn our house down. This cake is from Dorie Greenspan's Baking: From My Home to Yours, and it not only has brought me beyond my issues with tiramisu but has me addicted to the coffee marscapone icing. I will say this...there are a lot of steps. About halfway through I might have wished that I had just used a yellow cake mix, but at the end of it when tasting everything together I knew I had made the right decision sticking with it.

Tiramisu Cake
Source: Baking: From My Home To Yours

For the cake:
2 cups cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 ¼ sticks (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
¾ cup buttermilk

For the espresso extract:
2 tbs. instant espresso powder
2 tbs. boiling water

For the espresso syrup:
½ cup water
1/3 cup sugar
1 tbs. amaretto, Kahlua, or brandy

For the filling and frosting:
1 8-oz. container mascarpone cheese
½ cup confectioners sugar, sifted
1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbs. amaretto, Kahlua, or brandy
1 cup cold heavy cream
2 ½ oz. bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped, or about ½ cup store bought mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two 9 inch cake pans.

Making the Cake: In a bowl, sift together the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set Aside. In a mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until fluffy, then add the sugar and beat for another 3 minutes. Add in each egg one at a time, beating after each addition for about 1 minute. Beat in the vanilla. Reduce the mixer to low and add the flour mixture along with the butter milk alternately, beginning and ending with batches. [Dorie suggests 3 batches of flour mixture and 2 of buttermilk] Pour the batter evenly between the two prepared pans. Bake for between 25-30 minutes (mine was done at 23 minutes), rotating the pans halfway through. They should be slightly brown on top and a knife inserted in the middle should come out clean when done baking. Transfer to a cooling rack. After cooling slightly flip over the pan to release the cake and allow to cool completely.

Making the Extract: Stir the espresso powder and boiling water together, set aside.

Making the Syrup: Add water and sugar to a small saucepan, heat until it just reaches a boil. Remove from heat and add 1 tbl of the espresso extract and the liqueur.

Making the filling/frosting: Whisk the mascarpone, sugar, vanilla, and liqueur in a large bowl until blended. In a stand mixer whip the heavy cream until it holds peaks. Add a spoonful of the whipped cream to the mascarpone mixture and stir until combined. Carefully fold in the rest of the whipped cream so it is light and fluffy. [This mixture as it is will be used as the filling, and along with the addition of more coffee extract is used as the super delicious and creamy frosting]

Assembling the Cake: (Aren't you exhausted just from reading all these instructions??) On one of the layers of cake soak the top with the espresso syrup. (When I was making this I was kind of scared of the syrup, mostly because I used cinnamon schnapps...don't judge me, but this really should be 1/3 of the entire amount of syrup). Smooth about 1 1/4 c. of the filling on top of the cake layer and press chocolate into the frosting. Then, soak the bottom of the top layer of the cake and press the soaked side of the cake onto the frosting (a soaked cake sandwich if you will!). Then use the rest of the syrup to soak the top of the cake. Take the rest of the filling and add the rest of the espresso extract to taste. (I'd like to take this moment to talk about how much I loved this frosting. I could put chocolate chips in it and dip a sugar cookie in it and eat it every day for the rest of my life and be totally happy.) Use this frosting to frost the top and sides of the cake. Refrigerate this cake for at least 3 hours, but preferably up to a day. Dust with cocoa powder shortly before serving.




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