Tiramisu Cake with White Chocolate Mousse is a decadent ricotta cake with layers of white chocolate mousse, coffee, and chocolate ganache and then covered in a light whipped cream. It is the perfect extravagant special occasion cake, like birthdays or even weddings!
Yes, I have made this cake for both birthdays and weddings. In Norway, we usually serve a lot of homemade cakes for weddings, including a fancy wedding cake.
So this wasn't the tall wedding cake that doesn't taste good, but the one on the side that is the best cake on the table. Sorry to break it to you, wedding cakes aren't usually the best.
But this is!
It Might Not Be Easy But...
This tiramisu cake isn't an easy cake recipe, like the orange chocolate cake with buttercream or lemon ricotta cake with vanilla pastry cream. I need to tell you right away, that you need to read the whole recipe before starting because there's a chilling time and setting time.
If you're short on time I'd rather choose one of the other cakes (scroll to the bottom and there are even more cake recipes)! They are equally delicious, but this tiramisu cake is much more extravagant and perfect for a really special occasion.
A Tiramisu is a classic and popular Italian dessert made with ladyfingers soaked in coffee and mascarpone cream. This tiramisu cake doesn't have either ladyfingers or mascarpone cream, but the flavors are in place either way.
Instead of the ladyfingers soaked in coffee, I made a sponge cake soaked in coffee. Instead of the mascarpone cream, I have a mix of basic whipped cream and white chocolate mousse. You could of course cover the cake in a mascarpone frosting instead of whipped cream, but the cake is fairly heavy on its own, so I don't think it needs anything else.
This cake is actually great for a make-ahead cake. When you are done layering the cake (but not frosting it in whipped cream), it needs to freeze for the mousse to set. No one says you can't make it the week before and 6-8 hours before you need it, take it out of the freezer, cover it with whipped cream and let it defrost.
So once you have defrosted it, it lasts 3-4 days in the refrigerator, mostly because of the whipped cream. I think it is best the second day in the refrigerator because the flavors have gotten the time to really infuse together. Cover it in whipped cream the day before the special event, and let it sit in the fridge for an entire day is best.
It's easier to cover in whipped cream when it is frozen because there will be no crumbs to 'set in place' as they already are in place. However, there's no reason why you can't cover it after it's defrosted either. So many choices!
Choose the Right Kind of Cake Pan
Beware that the cake pan needs to be at least 11 cm or 4.3 inches tall and 26 cm (10 inches) in diameter. I thought a 10x3 inch pan would be enough, and it's just enough for the ricotta cake, but whenever you are adding the ganache and white chocolate mousse, it is just not big enough (please continue reading for how to cope with a too shallow pan).
However, as I searched the web, it seems to me that that kind of pan does not exist, but WHY? Anyway, I've got you covered if you can't find the perfect cake pan.
Evidently, I always use a 10x3 inch round baking spring pan, and I have to get creative. So if you don't have a tall enough pan, just use the best you have and supplement with parchment paper to give it the length it requires.
Bake the ricotta cake normally in this pan, and then add the parchment paper later on, whenever layering is ready. You should then fold the parchment paper once to make it a little sturdier, and add it along the rim of the pan, going all the way to the bottom to make it even stronger. Tape it together.
If you don't have a 10-inch pan, this recipe is great to cut in half too. I've done it several times in an 8-9 inch pan (20-23).
How to Make Vanilla Ricotta Cake
This tiramisu cake recipe is adapted from Olgas Cooking. Preheat your oven to 300F (150C) and grease a round baking spring pan (read above paragraph) with parchment paper at the bottom, with butter or oil.
In a medium bowl, whisk together ricotta, lemon juice, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract until a creamy consistency. In another bowl, whisk together (hand or stand mixer) 6 eggs and 2 cups of sugar, medium-high speed for about 7 minutes. Add the ricotta mixture into the eggs and whip until just incorporated.
Sift 380 gr (3 cups) with 3 teaspoon baking powder into the batter. Be careful here so as to not ruin the bubbles of the egg/sugar mixture (we call this an eggedosis in Norway). Using a rubber spatula, fold it in and take it in small portions, maybe around ¼, then fold, then another ¼, and so on. This is a boring and tedious task, but it really does wonder for the end result, which makes it massively worth it. The cake is so fluffy!
Bake the cake for around 90 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. This may vary depending on the size of the pan you used. Cool the cake completely before you remove it from the pan. Peel off the parchment paper. If your cake is slightly uneven, just cut it to even it out. And if not, leave it as is and using a serrated knife slice the cake horizontally into 3 layers.
If you want to see step-by-step photos for the cake and cutting the cake, I use the same exact base cake in this wonderfully fresh strawberry cake with lemon curd.
How to Make White Chocolate Mousse
Combine cold water and 14 grams (around 8 sheets) of gelatin, with enough water to submerge the gelatine. Set aside.
In a medium-large saucepan, bring 500 ml of heavy cream to a simmer. Add the white chocolate chips or pieces to a heat-proof bowl, and pour ¼ cup (60ml) of the warm heavy cream onto the chocolate (2). Wait for a minute before you begin folding it, and then keep folding until it has completely melted and has a smooth consistency. Set aside.
Whisk together 5 egg yolks and sugar for around 2 minutes using a hand or stand mixer (3). Continue to whisk while you slowly pour in the rest of the heavy cream and whisk until blended (4). I mean slowly because you don't want the heat to make scrambled eggs!
Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring back and forth with a rubber spatula for about 3-4 minutes (5).
It's time to get the gelatin out of the water, you can just squish it with your hands (or run it through a cheesecloth), when the gelatin is out, get it into the cream mixture and stir until the gelatin melts (6).
Using a hand or stand mixer, whisk cream cheese until creamy, around 2 minutes. Add the white chocolate ganache and whisk until incorporated (7). While still whisking, pour in the cooked gelatin cream and 1.5 tablespoon of coffee liqueur (I used Tía María) (8). Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula and whisk again. Set aside to cool until the mousse thickens a little. About 30 minutes.
Super Easy Dark Chocolate Ganache
While the mousse thickens, begin making the dark chocolate ganache. 300 gr of dark chocolate chips (semi-sweet), goes into a heat-proof bowl. In a small saucepan heat 1 cup of heavy cream, and then pour it onto the chocolate.
Let it rest for a minute before you fold it with a rubber spatula. When completely smooth, mix in 1 tablespoon of coffee liqueur.
How to Assemble This Tiramisu Cake
It is time to assemble! Remember I told you about the parchment paper in the round baking spring pan? Yeah, don't forget. When your pan is prepared, add the first layer of ricotta cake. Using a teaspoon, pour coffee on top of it to moisten it.
When it is mostly browned coffee, it's time to add ⅓ of the chocolate ganache. And then half of the white chocolate mousse. And then a new layer of ricotta cake - coffee - ⅓ chocolate ganache - the rest of the mousse and then a new layer of cake.
Moisten this with coffee too, before you add the rest of the chocolate ganache. Cover with a plastic wrap or bag and freeze overnight.
Take the cake out of the freezer and discard of the plastic. Run a sharp knife under hot water and carefully run it along the sides of the cake to release it from the rim, it may need to thaw 10 minutes first. Be careful when you try to take the bottom off too, and lift the cake onto a cake stand.
Whisk together 1 ½ cup of heavy cream with 1 tablespoon powdered sugar, just until stiff peaks form, a couple of minutes. Spread on top of the cake and sides, just barely covering it. Decorate the sides by using homemade krokan or even nothing. This time I added 3 tablespoon cocoa powder with ½ teaspoon golden dust in a bowl and then sifted this on top.
Let the cake defrost for around 6-8 hours before serving.
I'm telling you, this Tiramisu Cake is out of this world. Enjoy!
Did you like this cake? Here are more delicious cake recipes:
- Black Forest Cake with Chocolate Buttercream
- Fresh Strawberry Cake with Lemon Curd
- Lemon Ricotta Cake with Vanilla Pastry Cream
- Dark Chocolate and Orange Layer Cake with Buttercream
- Soft Cake with Apricot and Rum Pastry Cream (single serving cakes)
- Chocolate Lava Cake with Red Currant Raspberry Sauce (single serving cakes)
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This recipe was originally published on December 1st 2017, but updated on December 23rd 2019 for better photos and content.