CNYEats A Taste of Utica Italian Rum Cake

by Joanne on January 22, 2012

Get your Yum on.  This recipe from our book A Taste of Utica is like a little slice of heaven.


Page 154 through 155: Italian Rum Cake, posted by Mario


  • 1 Italian Sponge Cake (recipe below)
  • 1 recipe of Zabaglione (recipe below)
  • 1 cup chocolate pudding (optional)
  • sliced strawberries
  • whipped cream
  • toasted sliced almonds
  • rum or a rum-sugar wash (for the wash, simply boil 1/2 cup water with 1/2 cup sugar for 3 minutes then stir in 2 TBS of rum).

Italian Sponge Cake


  • 8 egg yolks
  • 8 egg whites
  • 2 tsp. grated lemon peal
  • 2 tsp. almond extract
  • 1 1/3 cup flour
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 TBS water
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350 F. Sift 1/2 cup sugar with the flour.  Place yolks, water and lemon peal in a bowl.  Beat lightly.  Add almond extract. Sift sugar-flour lightly over beaten egg yolks and fold in gently.

Place the whites in another grease free bowl (don’t use plastic!) and beat until foamy.  Add salt and the rest of the sugar. Continue to beat until stiff. Gently fold whites into flour mixture and pour into a parchment lined cake pan.

Bake for 45 minutes or until the cake pulls slightly away from edges of pan.  Leave in the pan to cool for 1 hour.

*Mario suggests using a tube pan and inverting over a long necked bottle to cool.

Zabaglione (Marsala Custard)


  • 8 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup Marsala wine
  • 2 TBS brandy
  • 1 TBS water

Place the yolks and sugar in the top part of a double boiler.  Heat about 1/3 cup  water in lower pan of double boiler to a simmer.

Beat the yolks and sugar  well with wire whisk.  Add the wine and brandy and beat well.  Add 1 TBS water and beat well.

Place the yolk mixture double boiler pan over the hot water pan and beat or stir until thickened.  Don’t let it boil or you will cook the yolks.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.

ASSEMBLY of al the above



Slice the cake horizontally into 3 layers.  Sprinkle the rum or rum syrup over the bottom layer until fairly moist.

Spread Zabaglione over cake layer.  Place some sliced strawberries over the Zabaglione.  Place another layer of cake over the strawberries.  Sprinkle this cake layer with the rum or rum syrup.  Spread with chocolate pudding if using or more Zabaglione if you aren’t using chocolate.  Place the last layer of cake over the chocolate pudding.  Sprinkle it with the rest of the rum-syrup mixture or enough rum to moisten.  Cover the cake with whipped cream.  Push the toasted sliced almonds around the sides of the cake and top with more sliced strawberries to decorate.  Let the cake sit in the fridge for about 2 hours prior to serving.  This allows the rum to fully saturate the cake.


Warning! Not diet food. Double Warning!  You WILL develop an addiction to this cake.


Wow! That’s good!

Next week:  Take a deep breath and a sigh of relief because we’re making A Taste of Utica Sugar Free Banana Cookies.  After eating all this cake, our bodies need a sugar break. Disappointed smile


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