Cake in the Key of Tiramisu

Here is a bit more info one the second cake in the cake extravaganza that was last weekend; tiramisu cake. I’m thankful to say (and you are probably thankful to hear) that there is less to this one than the cranachan cake, which was a recipe of epic proportions. I bored myself so much writing that post that I can’t bring myself to go back to read it again, which is probably something I should keep to myself but I’m an honest kind of gal. I sincerely hope that my boredom was born of over-familiarity with the recipe and subject matter, having spent so long working on the cake, and perhaps also of having a slight hangover and wanting to get a post written and posted in double quick time before going on to ice *another* cake. At any rate, here I am again with another ruddy cake…

The tiramisu cake consists of a coffee, rum and chocolate sponge and a mascarpone sponge, sandwiched together with a mascarpone buttercream and dusted with icing sugar and cocoa powder. The recipe links are embedded in there – I did make small changes to both, though, to suit my own particular needs; most notably, using rum instead of bourbon in the first recipe. I also slightly reduced the amount of booze and increased the amount of coffee in that cake – it’s a great recipe, and easy to adjust to suit your own taste, or excellent made just as it is. I halved the amounts to give one thin, ten-inch cake, which then became the bottom layer of my tiramisu cake – that’s it in the picture to the left. Note the work surface is still damp from a hasty wipe with a sponge, and the white cardboard which is there as much to hide the mess of icing sugar and crumbs behind it as it is to reflect light.The sponge does have an odd wrinkly look going for it, don’t let that put you off. In fact, try to forget that I mentioned it at all – I don’t think I’ve ever described a cake as wrinkly before. I don’t think I’ll be doing it again, either.

The only thing I changed in the mascarpone sponge (which is the top layer in the photo at the head of this post) was to leave out the Baileys; I’d love to go back and make it again as written though, that sounds like a great recipe. Sadly, I didn’t get to try this cake either so I can’t say if it turned out well, but it looked and smelled great, which are encouraging signs.

The mascarpone buttercream was a simple thing to put together, not least since I made it up as I went along. I’d halved the mascarpone cake amounts, too, so I was left with 100g of mascarpone cheese left in the pack I’d bought. I mixed this in with 150g of plain buttercream (I made a batch with 250g butter and 400g icing sugar, then split it between this icing and the cranachan cake icing) and spread it between the two sponges. It was thinner than normal buttercream, but the taste was already the right level of sweet, and it had a creamy texture that was right for this cake. To avoid any overflowing scenarios when the cake was sliced, I made sure not to spread it quite to the edges and to press down very firmly when I placed the top layer on. The amount of icing wasn’t really enough to send a cascade flowing out over the edges and all over the kitchen like a weird Flake advert anyway, but it was worth being careful. Look at that photo; I like it even though it looks a bit like the cake’s on a cliff edge and in jeopardy of sliding off and into oblivion. I do think that he icing looks great; once the cake was sandwiched together, I ran a finger round the edge to give that polished look. Shame that I was clearly leaning over at a most unusual angle before I took this snap.


This week’s playlist is a collection of songs that make me feel relaxed and happy. Chilled, I think the young people call it. Or maybe they have a new word for it, now. Some of these tunes remind me of calm times – Teardrop was a great classic on the jukebox in Jim’s Bar, during long lazy afternoons at uni. Some of them are lyrically great – The Ghost of Corporate Future for one. Some are just generally life affirming, like Mr E’s Beautiful Blues. His Majesty King Raam is not available on Spotify, but you should listen to that, too, and Nice Weather for Ducks stands reasonably well in its stead. Approach the list with an open mind, by which I mean ‘I know it’s got Coldplay on but don’t hate it for that reason’. The rest can speak for themselves, in the Rock Salt Playlist Week Thirteen.


About Rock Salt

Seasoning while rocking out since 1983. View all posts by Rock Salt

2 responses to “Cake in the Key of Tiramisu

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