How to Make Layered Sponge Cake
Layered sponge cake recipe known as Pizza Dolce from the region of Abruzzo. Originating back to 1923, this layered sponge cake has evolved over time to become one of the most sought after organic sponge cake desserts in Italy. Furthermore, this layered sponge cake is a sweet mix of sponge layered with almonds, vanilla and chocolate custard topped with coffee icing and super moist thanks to the mix of liquors on every layer. Additionally, it’s a flavour bomb and should be enjoyed responsibly.
Vincenzo’s Top Tip To Make Layered Sponge Cake
Ensure that all your ingredients are at room temperature.
Firstly, this will make it easier to mix everything together.
Sift your dry ingredients.
Such as flour and baking powder, to make sure there are no lumps.
Mix your wet ingredients and dry ingredients separately.
This will prevent over-mixing and ensure that your batter is smooth.
Layered Sponge Cake
- 3 Medium size mixing bowls
- Kitchen Aid
- Medium size saucepan
- round baking pan
- 2 Whisks
- x Large Spoon
- Icing spatula
- 5 Farm fresh extra-large eggs
- 150 grams White sugar
- 200 grams Plain flour
- Anisette Anise Syrup
- VANILLA + CHOCOLATE CUSTARD
- 400 grams Sugar
- 100 grams Plain flour
- 8 Egg yolks
- 1 L Full Cream Milk 4 cups
- Half lemon rind
- Cinnamon stick
- 1 Vanilla bean
- MOCHA ICING
- 1 kg Organic butter
- 100 g Sugar
- 2 cups Espresso coffee
- Toasted crushed hazelnuts
- ALMOND MIX
- 250 grams Sugar
- 250 grams Almonds peeled
- Vanilla bean
- Lemon juice
- Frangelico Or Amaretto
- TO MAKE THE MOIST SPONGE CAKE:
- Preheat your oven to 150 degrees celcius (302F).
- Mix 5 x eggs with 150g white sugar using a kitchen aid or electric mixer.
- Sift in 200g plain flour and fold through using a whisk.
- Cover a large cake pan with butter and flour to prevent the cake from sticking to it once it is baking in the oven.
- Pour the sponge cake mix into the pan and place this in the oven for around. 2 hours.
- TO MAKE THE CUSTARD FILLING:
- Place 400g sugar into a mixing bowl and add 100g of plain flour. Mix using your hands to get rid of any lumps.
- Transfer this into a saucepan and add 1 litre of fresh milk and 8 egg yolks. Mix this together really well using a whisk.
- Add a slice of lemon rind, then the cinnamon and vanilla.
- Mix gently, then put your saucepan on the stove at a medium heat and mix continuously using a wooden spoon. It should take between 5-10 minutes to become thick and creamy.
- Remove half of the cream from the saucepan and transfer it into a bowl to cool and set.
- Add 100g (or more if you like!) of dark chocolate melting buds and mix well. Continue to mix until the cream has changed in colour and then remove it from the stove to cool and set also.
- HOW TO MAKE THE ALMOND MIX:
- This is a mix of almonds, sugar, pure vanilla, lemon and Amaretto (or Frangelico).
- HOW TO MAKE THE MOCHA ICING:
- Mix one kilo of room temperature organic butter with 100g of sugar and combine using an electric mixer or a kitchen aid.
- Add 2 cups of espresso coffee and continue to mix through.
- The icing should start to thicken up. Continue to mix until you are happy with the consistency.
- HOW TO ASSEMBLE:
- Once the sponge has cooked and cooled, use a large, flat knife to cut the cake into 4 even layers.
- Starting with the bottom layer, wet the top of the moist sponge cake with Alchermes, Rum and Anisette syrup. This will help to keep the Pizza Dolce moist.
- Spread a generous amount of thick almond mix on top of this layer, making sure to cover all of the base and its edges.
- Then, place the next layer of sponge on top of the Pizza Dolce and wet it again, repeating step 2.
- Add a generous amount of chocolate pastry cream to the centre of this layer, and then spread it thickly and evenly over the top.
- Add the third layer of moist sponge cake to the top and repeat step 3 once again. Then spread the vanilla custard on top – again be as generous as you like!
- Add the final layer of sponge on top, and before wetting it through, break a strip of baking paper that you can then wrap around the edge of your cake. This will help the ingredients to stay inside the cake and also infuse all of the flavours together.
- Now, repeat step 3, adding a generous amount of the liquors to the top of your pizza dolce layered cake.
- E ora si mangia, Vincenzo’s Plate….Enjoy!
How to serve Pizza dolce
To create a delicious Pizza Dolce, use a flat spatula to spread a generous amount of Mocha icing over the top of the cake in a back-and-forth motion. Additionally, sprinkle crushed hazelnuts on top and refrigerate the cake for 24-48 hours before serving for best results. Lastly, savour a slice of Abruzzo’s history and enjoy this indulgent treat.
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