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    Italian Wedding Cake

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    Italian Wedding Cake

    This kind of cake might be served at all kinds of family gatherings and celebrations.

    • Preparation time: 45 minutes
    • Cooking time: 25 minutes, plus cooling
    • Total time: 1 hour 10 minutes, plus cooling 60 minutes 10 minutes

    Serves: 10 - 12


    • Buttercream
    • 1 egg
    • 175g plus 1 tbsp icing sugar
    • 175g unsalted butter, softened
    • 100ml cold, strong, black coffee Topping
    • Custard
    • 50g caster sugar
    • 2 tbsp plain white or Italian '00' flour
    • 1 egg
    • Grated zest of 1 lemon
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    • 300ml milk Buttercream
    • Sponge
    • Butter for greasing
    • 175g caster sugar
    • 175g plain white or Italian '00' flour
    • 6 eggs
    • Topping
    • 3 tbsp rum
    • 284ml carton double cream
    • Few drops vanilla extract
    • 50g toasted flaked almonds


    1. Preheat the oven to 190°C/gas mark 5. Grease and line a 23cm-diameter, deep, round cake tin.
    2. Put the eggs and sugar for the sponge in a bowl and place over a saucepan of gently simmering water. Using an electric whisk, whisk until thick and creamy. Remove from the heat and sift in the flour, a little at a time, folding it in gently. Pour into the tin. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until risen and golden. Turn out and cool on a rack.
    3. To make the custard, mix together the flour, sugar, egg, lemon zest and vanilla extract. Heat the milk in a saucepan to just below boiling. Leave to cool a little. Gradually pour the milk into the egg and flour mixture. Return to the saucepan and heat very gently, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens (10-15 minutes). Remove from the heat and place a piece of clingfilm on the surface of the custard to prevent a skin forming. Leave to cool.
    4. To make the buttercream, sieve 175g icing sugar into a bowl, add the butter and beat together. In a separate bowl, beat the egg with the remaining 1 tbsp icing sugar. Add the egg and sugar mixture to the butter mixture. Using an electric whisk, gradually add the coffee, mixing well between each addition, and mix until thick and creamy. If the mixture starts to split, stop adding the coffee (you may not use it all) and add a little more icing sugar to bring it back to a smooth consistency.
    5. To assemble the cake, cut the sponge horizontally into three even slices. Spread the custard on to the base layer. Spread the buttercream on the second layer (you may have some left over) and place on to the base layer, buttercream upwards. Add the top layer.
    6. To finish, drizzle the rum over the cake. Whip the cream with the vanilla extract until it just holds peaks. Cover the top and sides of the cake with the cream. Carefully press the almonds onto the sides. Chill before serving.

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