• 23cm-round genoise sponge cake (see related recipe)
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) amaretto liqueur
  • 300ml thickened cream
  • 250g ricotta
  • 250g mascarpone
  • 100g icing sugar, plus extra to dust
  • 50g blanched almonds, toasted, chopped
  • 25g mixed peel
  • 150g dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder, plus extra to dust


Step 1


Line a 1.2-litre pudding basin with plastic wrap, leaving enough hanging over the edges to fold over the top of the pudding and cover securely.

Step 2

Slice the cake horizontally into 3 layers and set aside 1 layer, then cut both of the remaining layers into 8 triangular slices.

Step 3

Line the pudding basin with the cake slices, with the pointed ends at the bottom of the basin. Patch any holes with spare pieces of cake (you may not need all the slices) so the whole basin is lined with cake. Use a pastry brush to brush the cake with 2 tablespoons of the amaretto.

Step 4

Whip the cream until soft peaks form. Place the ricotta in a food processor with the mascarpone and icing sugar, and process until smooth. Add the ricotta mixture to the cream, then stir in 1 tablespoon amaretto. Transfer half the mixture to another bowl, and stir in the almonds, mixed peel and half the dark chocolate, then set aside.

Step 5

Place the remaining dark chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water, making sure that the bowl does not touch the water.

Step 6

Melt the chocolate, stirring occasionally, then remove from heat and cool slightly. Stir into the other half of the ricotta mixture. Sift in the cocoa powder and stir until smooth, then cool completely.

Step 7

Spread the melted chocolate and ricotta mixture over the sides of the sponge cake in a thick layer, then fill the centre with the almond and ricotta mixture. Cover with the reserved round of sponge, trimming the edges to fit the basin. Brush the top with the remaining tablespoon of amaretto. Fold over the plastic wrap and cover tightly, then weigh down and refrigerate overnight.

Step 8

When ready to serve, carefully turn out zuccotto onto a plate. Cut out 2 triangular templates from baking paper, then dust the zuccotto with alternate triangles of cocoa powder and icing sugar, covering the dusted areas with the template as you go. Serve zuccotto in slices.

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