Cassata cake is like a cannoli but more gooey. You need 2 – 9 inch sponge cake layers for this recipe. The instructions are given for to make them, or you can use your own recipe.
- 1 1/2 cups cake flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 5 eggs
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 1 1/4 cups white sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 2 pounds whole milk ricotta cheese
- 2 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 (1 ounce) squares semi-sweet chocolate
- 1/2 cup candied lemon peel
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons light rum
- 6 (1 ounce) squares bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
1 Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease and line with parchment paper 2 nine inch round layer pans.
2 Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together.
3 Separate the eggs and set the egg whites aside. Beat the egg yolks together on medium-high speed until very thick, about 4 minutes. Gradually add the cold water. Add 1- 1/4 cups of the white sugar, slowly, and beat well for about 3 more minutes. Add 1 teaspoon of the vanilla. Sift the flour mixture over the egg yolk mixture and fold in.
4 Beat the egg whites and cream of tartar together until stiff peaks form. Fold this into the yolk mixture. Divide batter between the pans.
5 Bake at 325 degrees F (165 degrees C) for 25 minutes. Cool on rack for 10 minutes and then invert and cool completely.
6 Cut each cake layer in half. Place one of the 4 halves on a cake board or plate and sprinkle with a little of the Rum Syrup. Spread about 1-1/2 cups of the Filling over this layer. Add a second layer of cake and repeat this procedure. Top the cake with the last layer of cake. Chill at least 4 hours. Spread Chocolate Glaze over top of cake.
7 To Make Ricotta Cheese Filling: Beat the ricotta cheese well and add the confectioner’s sugar and cinnamon. Add 1-1/2 teaspoons of the vanilla and grate 2 ounces of the chocolate in using the coarse side of a grater. Stir in the candied lemon peel and mix. Chill until ready to use.
8 To Make The Rum Syrup: Place 1/3 cup of the sugar and the water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Boil 1 minute and then remove from heat and add the rum. Cool to room temperature.
9 To Make The Chocolate Glaze: Melt 6 ounces of the chocolate and the cream in the microwave, whisk smooth. Add the butter and whisk until dissolved. Cool mixture until spreadable. Spread over the top of the cake.