This pretty and delicious Mimosa cake is the Italian’s way to honor women on the 8th of March, the international women’s day. On this special day, women are given Mimosa flowers. Maybe, at some point, someone thought that a cake will go perfectly along with the flowers 🙂
Mimosa cake’s name comes from the resemblance to mimosa flowers. It is made from sponge cake, diplomat cream and pineapple and decorated with sponge cake crumbs or very small cubs. Diplomat cream is actually pastry cream mixed with whipped cream. In Romania we have a cake called Diplomat cake which is made from diplomat cream, fruits and ladyfingers.
Mimosa cake is very easy to prepare. You have to prepare one cream that you can use for filling but also for the top.
Sponge cake is very easy to make but there are a few rules which MUST be respected:
For best results, use fresh ingredients, at room temperature
The magic formula for the perfect sponge cake is: sugar+flour=eggs (the quantity of sugar + the quantity of flour must be equal with the quantity of eggs)
Always use a kitchen scale to measure the ingredients.
Use a clean bowl and a clean mixer to beat the whites. The whites can’t be beaten properly with greasy instruments.
Beat very well the whites, until stiff peaks form. This is a very important step.
Don’t use the mixer when incorporating the flour
Don’t add baking powder. It’s not necessary. The cake will rise due to the well beaten whites.
Bake the cake right after folding the flour
Don’t open the oven in the first 15 minutes
Ingredients for the Italian Mimosa cake (for a 20 cm/ 7.87 inches diameter baking dish):
For the sponge cake:
– 4 eggs
– 100 gr (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
– 100 gr (3/4 cup and 1 tablespoon) flour
– zest from 1 lemon
– a pinch of salt
– vanilla flavor
For the Diplomat cream:
– 200 ml (1 cup minus 2 tablespoons) heavy cream
– 20 gr (3 tablespoons) icing sugar
For Pastry cream
– 500 ml (2 cups and 2 tablespoons) milk
– 4 egg yolks
– 100 gr (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
– 40 gr (5 tablespoons) flour
– vanilla flavor
You also need 300 gr (10.58 oz) pineapple (canned) for the filling
For the syrup
– 200 ml (1 cup minus 2 tablespoons) water
– 125 gr (1/2 cup and 2 tablespoons) granulated sugar
– 50 ml (4 tablespoons and 1 teaspoon) Limoncello (or your favorite liqueur)
How to make Italian Mimosa cake
How to make the sponge cake
First preheat the oven to 170º C (338º F).
Line the bottom of the baking tray with parchment paper and butter the sides.
Separate the yolks from whites.
Place the whites into a large bowl along with a pinch of salt. Beat the whites at high speed until stiff peaks form.
Add the sugar in 2 or 3 steps and continue to mix until the sugar is completely dissolved. To check if the sugar is completely dissolved, take some foam between your fingers and see if you can feel any sugar. You should obtain a very firm and glossy foam.
Add the vanilla extract and the egg yolks. Briefly mix until incorporated.
Add the lemon zest.
Add the flour, gradually, and mix with a spatula until incorporated.
Pour the batter into the prepared baking tray and level it with a spatula.
Place the baking tray into the preheated oven and bake at 170º C (338º F) for about 25-30 minutes (or until the toothpick comes out clean and dry) .
Allow to cool on wire racks.
How to make the Diplomat cream
You should start by preparing the pastry cream.
Reserve 4-5 tablespoons of cold milk. Warm the rest of the milk (it must be hot). Set aside.
In a heatproof pan place the 4 yolks and granulated sugar. Mix until creamy and pale. Add half of the flour and mix to combine. Add the cold milk and incorporate. Add the rest of the flour and mix to combine.
Add the hot milk, gradually, mixing in the same time.
Place the pan over low heat and cook, stirring continuously, until thickens. The vanilla pastry cream is cooked when it starts to make bubbles.
Remove from heat, add the vanilla flavor and stir to incorporate.
Cover with plastic wrap, right over the cream, and allow to cool. When achieves the room temperature, place the pastry cream into the freezer for about 15 minutes.
Place heavy cream and icing sugar into a large bowl. Beat until fluffy and firm.
Add the pastry cream and mix to combine. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
How to prepare the syrup
Place sugar and water into a heat proof pan. Place the pan over medium heat and cook until sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat, allow to cool for about 10 minutes then add 50 ml Limoncello. Cover and set aside.
How to assemble Mimosa cake
Remove the Diplomat cream from the refrigerator. Reserve about 200-250 gr (7.05-8.8 oz) for the top and place it back into the refrigerator. Mix the rest of the cream with finely diced and drained pineapple. Set aside.
You should assemble the cake into a spring form pan or into a regular pan lined with plastic wrap.
Slice the sponge cake into 3 pieces. Reserve the middle one to make the crumbs.
Place 1 slice of sponge cake into the pan and drizzle with syrup.
Evenly spread the Diplomat cream mixed with pineapple.
Place the second slice of sponge cake and drizzle with syrup.
Place the cake into the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
Meanwhile prepare the sponge cake crumbs.
Trim the brown edges and finely crumble the sponge cake. Set aside.
Remove the cake from the refrigerator and turn it out onto a plate.
Coat the outside of the cake with the reserved cream.
Spread sponge cake crumbs all over the cake.
Place the cake back into the refrigerator for a few hours, over night is even better.