Part store bought, part homemade, this cake is a winner. How can you lose when you’re working with coffee, rum, chocolate and cream? I started making this cake back in the ’80’s and it has never let me down. Light yet rich and luxurious, Diplomatico cake is typically credited to Marcella Hazan. I lost my original recipe, however, this one is quite close to hers. A cheap, store bought pound cake is best as it’s sturdy and will keep its shape. It’s a super easy going recipe…a little more of this and a little less of that is not an issue.
I’ve made it with 4 eggs and I’ve made it with 6. Sometimes I have espresso and at times I’ve only had the morning’s cold coffee available. It all works beautifully. The coffee and rum are strong and aromatic. The intense chocolate mousse inside is…well, it’s chocolate, it’s heavenly. And that cloud of whipped cream softens and compliments the entire cake. Keep in mind the eggs are raw, not cooked, so if anyone has allergies or food issues maybe they should have their own little dish of berries. Hope you’ll try it!
No-Bake Diplomatico Cake
- 1/2 cup brewed espresso
- 3 tablespoons rum, preferably dark or golden
- 3 teaspoons sugar
- 1 12-ounce store-bought pound cake, cut into 1/4″-1/2″ slices, you’ll need about 16 slices
- 5 large eggs, separated
- 7 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
- 3 teaspoons sugar
- 1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
- 3 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Line a 1 1/2 quart loaf pan with plastic wrap and set aside.
- Lay the cake slices out flat so they are not overlapping each other.
- Combine espresso, rum and 3 teaspoons of sugar in a small bowl and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Using a pastry brush, paint the espresso mixture evenly over one side of each slice.
- Line the bottom and sides of the loaf pan with the cake and the pan and remaining slices aside.
- In a medium bowl whip the egg yolks until pale and thick. Add the remaining 3 teaspoons of sugar and mix well. Set aside.
- Melt chocolate over a double boiler and slowly mix into the whipped egg yolks. Do not allow to cool completely.
- Whip the egg white until stiff peaks form. Mix a little of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture just to loosen it up then gently fold in the remaining egg whites.
- Pour the chocolate mixture into the prepared loaf pan and cover with the remaining cake slices, coffee side up.
- Cover cake with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator over night.
- Prior to serving turn cake onto serving platter and discard plastic wrap.
- Pour whipping cream into a medium size bowl and whip until soft peaks form. Add confectioner’s sugar and vanilla extract and continue whipping until stiff, firm peaks form.
- Smooth the cream over the cake and garnish with berries, shaved chocolate or nuts.
- Store in the refrigerator.