It was the boyfriend's birthday yesterday and it’s tradition at his workplace that the birthday boy/girl brings in their own cake to share with everyone (weird, I know.) In the past, ever since he started working there, I've made him a cake to bring in. Last year I made one of my fondant covered cakes for him to bring in.
This year, since I was a bit short on time and the boyfriend has said he liked tiramisu (a hint no doubt!), I decided to make a tiramisu cake. This has to be by far one of the easiest cakes/desserts to make. It tastes impressive too :) No baking required (unless you decide to make your sponge fingers from scratch) and I managed to mix, assemble and 'decorate' all in an hour!
If you decide to make your own sponge fingers, it's actually really easy and you can make it days in advance. The good thing about home made sponge fingers is that not only do they taste better but you can also make them any shape/size to suit your needs. I've tried this recipe before and it worked out really well.
I used my favourite tiramisu recipe which I made a few little changes. The original can be found here.
This recipe has a few of my tweaks (I basically added more coffee and liqueur for a stronger taste!):
500g mascarpone cheese
2 heaped tablespoons icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 heaped tablespoon espresso coffee
1 cup boiling water
5 tablespoons Kaluha liqueur
2 packet sponge fingers
2 tablespoons caster sugar
Separate the eggs. Add the mascarpone, icing sugar and vanilla extract to the yolks. Mix together until smooth. Add 1 heaped teaspoon of cocoa powder and mix well.
Mix the espresso coffee with the boiling water in a shallow bowl and let it cool before adding the Kaluha.
Using clean beaters, whip the eggwhites until stiff. Add the caster sugar gradually, beating until it has all dissolved.
Fold the eggwhites through the mascarpone mixture until combined.
To assemble the cake, simply layer the tiramisu on a cake board as you would if it was in a bowl.
Take the sponge fingers and dunk them in one at a time into the coffee mixture and layer them on top of the mascarpone. Sprinkle with cocoa powder.
Try not to soak the sponge fingers too long (they might get too soggy for the cake). It doesn’t matter if the tiramisu is not in a perfect circle, once you put the sponge fingers along the sides, you'll be able to push it gently in place.
Add another layer of mascarpone, another layer of soaked sponge fingers, then another layer of mascarpone and sprinkle with cocoa powder.
Spread some mascarpone mixture along the sides of the cake. Repeat layering until you have finished using all of the mascarpone mixture.
Top with sprinkled cocoa powder or grated chocolate (or both!) Use the remaining sponge fingers to build a ‘fence’ around the cake. Tie with a ribbon and top with fresh strawberries if desired!