Mascarpone-Filled Cake with Berries

No birthday celebration is complete without cake – so I’ll turn on the oven in 90 degree weather for close friends birthdays (Jeb, that’s a complement).  I try to pick desserts by what is in season. This weekend, both strawberries and blackberries were on sale at the store so I looked for a recipe that I could incorporate them into. I found this recipe for Marscarpone-Filled Cake with Berries on one of my favorite recipe sites – I loved the idea of the mascarpone whipped cream and just had to try it. I didn’t have sherry and used Grand marnier instead – it worked out very well!
I sent my Mom the link to the recipe while I was baking and she liked the idea so much that she made it too! She also got the added value of learning from my mistakes. I recommended that she cut the cake normally (without the horizontal opening) and serve it with the cream and berries on the side instead of trying to assemble the cream within the two cake layers – it just squishes all out the sides (see photo). She reported back that this was the best strawberry shortcake she has ever had! I highly recommend this recipe for your summer sweets! Thanks Epicurious!
Mascarpone-Filled Cake with Berries from Gourmet Magazine
For cake:
  • 2 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising; sift before measuring)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup well-shaken buttermilk

For berries:

  • 1/2 cup Fino (dry) Sherry
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 cups mixed berries, cut if large

For cream:

  • 8 ounces mascarpone (1 cup)
  • 1 cup chilled heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • confectioners sugar


Make cake:
Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Butter a 9-inch round cake pan (2 inches deep). Line bottom with a round of parchment paper, then butter parchment.

Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Beat in vanilla. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. With mixer at low speed, beat in buttermilk until just combined. Add flour mixture in 3 batches, mixing after each addition until just combined.

Spread batter in cake pan, smoothing top. Rap pan on counter several times to eliminate air bubbles.

Bake until golden and a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack 10 minutes. Run a knife around edge of cake to loosen, then invert onto a plate. Discard paper and reinvert cake onto rack to cool completely.

Macerate berries:
Bring Sherry and sugar to a boil in a small heavy saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Put berries in a bowl and pour hot syrup over them, gently tossing to coat. Let stand 15 minutes.

Make cream and assemble cake:
Beat mascarpone and cream with sugar in a large bowl using cleaned beaters until mixture just holds stiff peaks.

Halve cake horizontally with a long serrated knife. Carefully remove top half and reserve. Put bottom half on a plate, then spread evenly with all of cream and replace top half. Serve with berries.


  1. Heather: Hey! (said with indignation) How come Jeb gets his own picture.

    Becci: Um, because he has his own blog. (said in her ‘stop being a baby, Heather’ voice)

    Heather: Oh.

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