The classic Italian dessert. A layer of creamy custard set atop espresso-soaked ladyfingers.
- 1 sponge cake, (10 to 12″)
- 3 ounces strong brewed black coffee or espresso
- 3 ounces brandy or rum
- 1 1/2 pound cream cheese or mascarpone, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- unsweetened cocoa powder
- Cut across middle of sponge cake forming two layers, each about 1 1/2 inches high.
- Blend coffee and brandy. Sprinkle enough of mixture over bottom half of cake to flavor it strongly. Don’t moisten cake too much or it may collapse on serving. Beat room-temperature cheese and 1 cup sugar until sugar is completely dissolved and cheese is light and spreadable. Test for sweetness during beating, adding more sugar if needed.
- Spread cut surface of bottom layer with half of the cheese mixture. Replace second layer and top this with remaining cheese mixture. Sprinkle top liberally with sifted cocoa.
- Refrigerate cake for at least 2 hours before cutting and serving.