This frozen version of the popular Italian dessert includes sponge cake soaked with an espresso-Kahlúa syrup, espresso and coffee ice creams, and a fine dusting of ground espresso. Serve right from the pan.
- Place sugar and 2/3 cup water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat; stir in espresso and Kahlúa. Let the syrup cool.
- Using a long serrated knife, cut the sponge cake in half horizontally, making two layers. Place one layer in the bottom of a 9 x 2-inch baking pan. Using a pastry brush, brush the layer with 3/4 cup of the cooled syrup. Sift 2 tablespoons ground espresso over the cake layer.
- Place the espresso ice cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on low speed until spreadable. Spread the ice cream over the cake; top with a second layer of sponge cake. Brush with the remaining syrup. Transfer the cake to the freezer for 20 minutes.
- Remove the cake from the freezer; sift the remaining 2 tablespoons of ground espresso evenly over the cake. Place the coffee ice cream in the mixer bowl. Beat on low speed until spreadable. Spread the ice cream over the cake, forming large swirls. Return to the freezer; freeze until completely hardened. To serve, garnish with the chocolate curls.
- Preheat the oven to 350° F with a rack in the center. Butter a 9 x 2-inch square baking pan. Line the pan with parchment paper. Butter and flour the paper, tapping out the excess flour; set aside. In a small bowl, sift together the flour and cornstarch; set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg yolks, vanilla, and 1/2 cup sugar on high speed until thick and pale, about 5 minutes. Transfer mixture to a large bowl. Wash and dry bowl and whisk attachment.
- Combine egg whites and salt in mixer bowl; beat on medium until the whites hold soft peaks, about 1 1/2 minutes. With the mixer running, slowly add the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar. Continue beating until stiff and glossy, about 1 minute.
- Stir about one-third of the egg-white mixture into the egg-yolk mixture to lighten it. Fold in the remaining egg-white mixture into the egg-yolk mixture. In three additions, fold the reserved flour mixture into this new mixture. Transfer the batter to the pan, and smooth the top with an offset spatula. Bake until a cake tester inserted into middle comes out clean, 30 to 40 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool; turn out the cake, and wrap it in plastic wrap until ready to use. May be made up to 1 day ahead.
Recipe by Martha Stewart
Martha Stewart is the author of more than 75 books on cooking, entertaining, crafts, home-keeping, gardens, weddings, and decorating. She is the host of Cooking School on PBS. For more than twenty years, the food editors and chefs in the kitchens at MARTHA STEWART LIVING have produced dozens of bestselling cookbooks, including Martha Stewart's Cooking School, Martha's American Food, Martha Stewart's Cupcakes, Everyday Food: Great Food Fast, and Power Foods. (Photo Credit: Scott Duncan)