Sometimes you want a cake to be that little bit special; my Raspberry & Mascarpone Layer Cake is the perfect cake for any celebration.
I realised recently that I tend to make my family’s favourite cake for their birthday. Clearly this isn’t a bad thing, but it does mean I get stuck in a rut and they don’t get to try something new. I did this for my Mum’s birthday this year making her my Pistachio Cake with Vanilla Cream Cheese Icing because she loves it. But then she tagged me in a post on Facebook from last year when I made it for her birthday. This is why I decided to make something completely new for my sister’s birthday – my Raspberry & Mascarpone Layer Cake.
My sister, Ally’s birthday was just after the Easter weekend this year. My parent’s were away with my Nan and our husbands were away on a stag do so I invited my Ally over for a tasty meal and to give her the cake I had made for her. However, as Mr Curly was away, I got a bit carried away in the kitchen and therefore was slightly behind with Ally’s cake.
Slightly behind is a bit of an understatement and when she arrived, all I had managed to do was actually bake the cake. So in between cooking a roast, I was also trying to decorate this cake. Ally was also reminding me that she was quite hungry so I tried to do it all as quickly as possible which is why there aren’t as many photos of the process as I would have liked.
Ally took the cake home with her and unfortunately it didn’t fair well on the short journey back to their house. Because I had put the cake on a cake board, it slipped in the cake carrier I gave them and got a little squashed. I’m pleased Ally had seen the cake how it was meant to look before it had it’s car journey! Learn from my mistake and use some of the frosting to stick the cake board to cake box or carrier you are using!
I had a vision of what I wanted the final cake to look like and played around until I was happy with it. I came up with the flavours of raspberry, vanilla and mascarpone as I knew my sister would love them. My favourite element is the mascarpone frosting which is rich, creamy and absolutely delicious. After some research I realised there were lots of different ways to make mascarpone frosting, but all involved mascarpone cheese and double cream. With those ingredients I knew it was going to be a winner.
I love using vanilla bean paste not only for the flavour, but I like the flecks it brings to the final cake because it makes it look a little bit posh. Obviously you can use vanilla extract if you would prefer and the cake would still taste delicious.
If you would prefer to have more of the raspberry mascarpone frosting, mix more of it with the crushed raspberries. You could even cover the whole cake with this if you would prefer – but you would obviously need a few more raspberries!
You can also decorate the cake however you would like. I chose to keep it fairly simple with raspberries and meringue kisses but you can go as far as you would like. It really would make a lovely cake for a special occasion as it serves quite a few people and looks that little bit special. I think a cake topper would really finish this cake off.
Due to the cream, this Raspberry & Mascarpone Layer Cake does need to be kept in the fridge but it will keep for at least 4-5 days. It is a little bit time consuming to make this cake – definitely more effort than just a Victoria sandwich, but it is so tasty. You will definitely be seeing more recipes using mascarpone frosting from me soon!
Serves 12 – 14
For the cake
335g caster sugar
335g self raising flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 ½ tsp vanilla bean paste
For the frosting
375g icing sugar
375 double cream
½ tsp vanilla bean paste
- Preheat the oven to 170ºC fan assisted (190ºC non fan assisted and line three 20cm loose bottomed sandwich tins. Set aside
- Cream the butter and sugar together for at least 5 minutes until it is pale and fluffy
- Add one egg at a time, mixing before adding the next
- Add the flour, baking powder and vanilla extract and mix until everything is full incorporated
- Divide evenly between the three tins and smooth the top using a spatula. Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes until a cocktail stick comes out clean when inserted into the cake
- Allow to cool slightly in the tins before cooling completely on a wire rack
- Once the cakes are cooled, make the frosting. Using a whisk attachment add the mascarpone and icing sugar to the bowl and whisk until combined
- Add the double cream and vanilla bean paste and whisk for 1-2 minutes until the frosting has thickened and become fluffy. Do not overwhisk
- In a separate bowl, crush the raspberries with a fork. Add two large spoonfuls of the mascarpone frosting (approximately 150g) and mix together
- Level each of the cakes with either a cake wire or a bread knife so that the top of each is completely flat
- Add a small amount of the frosting to the centre of the serving plate/cake board
- Take the first cake and turn it over so what was the bottom is facing up. Place it on the plate/cake board
- Spoon the mascarpone frosting into a large piping bag and the raspberry mascarpone into another
- Cut a hole in the bottom of the piping bag at least 1cm wide. Starting from the outside of the cake, pipe around the outside of cake creating two circles of frosting
- Do the same with the raspberry mascarpone icing to fill in the centre of the cake and then spread to flatten with a small pallet knife
- Add the next cake layer on top and repeat the same process with the icing
- Add the final layer of cake on top of the others and crumb coat the cake. This is covering the whole cake in a thin layer of frosting which locks in the crumbs. Make sure you scrape off your pallet knife in the bowl with the remaining frosting in. You will still see the cake through the crumb coat
- Put the cake in the fridge for 20 minutes to set
- Remove the cake from the fridge and using the remaining frosting, cover the cake and smooth using a pallet knife
- You should have some raspberry mascarpone remaining, using your pallet knife, dot this around the cake and smooth again using your pallet knife
- Decorate the cake with meringue kisses and raspberries – or however you prefer
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