December 15, 2011 - Narcissism is Necessary

Archive | December 15, 2011

Alexis inspired Tiramisu Cake recipe

Gawd this is the longest gawddamn recipe I’ve ever written here. It took me literally weeks just to get my arse around to sort the pictures out.

One of my most favourite cakes in the world is the tiramisu cake from Alexis. Being an avid home baker, of course it’s only a matter of time before I try to recreate it. After studying and dissecting the cake (involving many trips to Alexis to eat more cakes), I concluded that it’s made up of a soft, fluffy coffee-ish cake, creamy tiramisu filling, chopped chocolates and nut pralines.

I spent several hours researching for recipes that made each element but ended up taking the easy way and adopted a recipe from FatBoyBakes. Thank you man! I wish I could bake half as good as you one day!

Also, sorry that I don’t have better taken pictures of the end result because I only made the cake once for a friend’s dinner party and another time for a friend’s birthday.

Also didn’t help my cause that the dining table, where I normally take pictures of my food is currently swamped by dozens of empty boxes & stuff I haven’t gotten around to throw.

Anyway, on to the recipe….

First of all, you might be shocked at some of the liberties I took in this recipe.

While many swear on using mascarpone exclusively for tiramisu, I rebelliously used cream cheese instead. Why not? It is MUCH cheaper and taste less sweet. It gets beaten into a soft silky mess anyway in the end.

Another thing is, instead of using marsala wine or coffee liquer, I used plain old Absolut. Again, why not? All I wanted was a good, strong, boozy kick and vodka can give me that without overpowering any flavour of the cake. Besides, that’s all I had in the pantry :P

So yeah, if you’re the type that resents culinary abominations like these, you may stop reading this blog post now. By the way, I even used raw eggs. GASP!!!

Ingredients for coffee cake:


Group 1

  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 teaspoon of coffee powder
  • 115 ml of water
  • 85 ml of cooking oil
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 1.5 cups of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder


  • Group 2

  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon of cream of tartar


  • # – First of all, combine all ingredients in Group 1 in a bowl.

    # – Then, dump the contents of the bowl into a food processor/stand mixer and blend on medium till well-mixed. If you don’t have a food processor or stand mixer, a strong whisk & some elbow grease should work.

    # – In the meantime, lets get on with ingredients in Group 2. Beat the egg whites until fluffy & soft, then add the sugar & cream of tartar. Beat again till it’s glossy and doesn’t fall out when you tip the bowl like this.

    # – Slowly fold the egg whites into the Group 1 mixture in 3 batches. Don’t overmix as you don’t want to beat the air out of the egg whites.

    # – Then pour the mixture into a round 8″ baking tin, preferably spring form or at least with detachable base. Notice the mixture still has some faint whitish bit from the egg whites? Don’t fret cause you’re not supposed to overmix it. Can’t stress enough about not overmixing! Also, DO NOT grease the tin otherwise the cake will not rise! You may grease the base but not the sides at it needs rough surface to climb.

    # – Stick it into a preheated oven at 170 – 175 degrees celcius on the lower rack for 40 minutes.

    # – When cake is done, remove and let completely cool down while you continue with other tasks. Sorry about the ugly cracked dome, I think I got a bit heavy handed with the baking powder. Don’t worry if it happens to you as you could just shave the bits off and nobody will be able to tell in the end :D


    Ingredients for the creamy filling:

  • 500gm of cream cheese, softened in room temperature
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup castor sugar
  • 2 cups of whipping cream, whipped till thick
  • Vodka to taste
  • Optional: 2 tablespoons of powdered gelatine & 40ml of hot water


  • # – Beat the egg yolks and sugar until pale.

    # – Then add the softened cream cheese and vodka and beat again until smooth and sloppy. I used about 6 tablespoons of vodka, you can reduce or increase or omit to your taste, which brings us to the importance of tasting as you go!!! Too much vodka can make the mixture bitter one ya!

    # – Meanwhile, beat the whipping cream until thick and fluffy.

    # – Combine the cream cheese mixture and whipped cream together. At this point, if you’re hoping to transport the cake somewhere else or not eat it immediately, I think you should add in gelatine, coz cake will MELT without it! (Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of gelatine powder onto the surface of 40ml hot water. Let stand for a minute or two, then mix with your finger and then pour it in!)


    Ingredients for Coffee & Vodka Mixture:

  • 3 tablespoons of coffee powder
  • 3/4 cup of hot water
  • 5 tablespoons of vodka, omit, reduce or increase for your own taste


  • # – Just dissolve coffee powder in water and mix with vodka. This will be used to moisten the cake later. Allow to cool.


    Ingredients for nut praline:

  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 50gms butter
  • 1/2 cup of almonds
  • 1/2 cup of chopped hazelnuts
  • Option: you can just use 1 cup of either nuts if you fancied.


  • # – On medium heat, melt the butter and sugar in a saucepan. When turn golden and thick, add the nuts and stir quickly.

    # – Pour the mixture onto a non-stick baking sheet, try to spread them out flat as much as possible. You’re working with REALLY HOT mixture here so becareful not to burn yourself! Allow to cool, it will harden.

    # – When cooled, break the hardened sheet of candied nuts and throw them into a food processor. Pulse into roughly thumbnail size. Or use the end of a cleaver or pestle & mortar if you don’t have a food processor.

    By the way, do make extra to eat as homemade nut brittle. Just break it into smaller sheets rather then chopping it up. They are addictive!!!!

    To assemble the cake:

  • Coffee cake, cut horizontally into 2 layers. 3 if you’re a pro like that
  • Creamy filling
  • Coffee vodka mixture
  • Nut praline
  • 100 grams of dark chocolate, roughly chopped


  • # – By now you should have cut the cake made earlier into 2 layers. You can do 3 layers if you want. Spoon the coffee vodka mixture all over the cake slices to moisten them.

    # – Now put the moistened cake layer into the same spring form baking tin and spoon the creamy filling over until completely covered.

    # – Sprinkle the chopped chocolates all over. The picture of the chocolates looks finely chopped but I learnt later on that rougher chopped chocolates are better. The rougher chocolates have more weight to stay in the middle rather then being pushed to the edge when the upper layer presses down.

    # – Put the 2nd cake layer on top and spoon the creamy filling all over until covered. Stick in the fridge to chill for at least 4 hours. That’s why, I recommend not waiting till last minute to make this cake (speaking from experience).

    # After 4 hours, slowly unmould the cake with your friends around for the added pressure.

    # – SUCCESS!

    # – This is the time where you do the dancing with the friends.

    # – Sprinkle the nut pralines all over the cake, the top and the side.

    # – And at last, tiramisu cake, DONE!

    # – Yums! Thanks Suan for the pictures!

    # – Another one made for Horng‘s birthday.

    Soft, cottony coffee cake with soft, creamy cheese filling, chocolates and luscious nut pralines. Does the cake taste exactly like the tiramisu cake from Alexis? No, I don’t think so. But it’s close enough :)


    Here’s the final list of ALL ingredients needed to make this cake:

    Ingredients for coffee cake:


    Group 1

  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 teaspoon of coffee powder
  • 115 ml of water
  • 85 ml of cooking oil
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 1.5 cups of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder


  • Group 2

  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon of cream of tartar


  • Ingredients for the creamy filling:

  • 500gm of cream cheese, softened in room temperature
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup castor sugar
  • 2 cups of whipping cream, whipped till thick
  • Vodka to taste
  • Optional: 2 tablespoons of powdered gelatine & 40ml of hot water


  • Ingredients for Coffee & Vodka Mixture:

  • 3 tablespoons of coffee powder
  • 3/4 cup of hot water
  • 5 tablespoons of vodka, omit, reduce or increase for your own taste


  • Ingredients for nut praline:

  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 50gms butter
  • 1/2 cup of almonds
  • 1/2 cup of chopped hazelnuts
  • Option: you can just use 1 cup of either nuts if you fancied.


    For layering:

  • 100gms of dark chocolates, roughly chopped



  • Posted in: Dessert, Homemade Recipes - Continue Reading