1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted but cooled
2 tablespoons maraschino liqueur or Kirsch
2 tablespoons brandy
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1/3 cup confectioners' sugar
1/3 cup almonds, toasted and finely chopped
1/3 cup hazelnuts, toasted and finely chopped
1/3 cup chopped semisweet chocolate
1/4 cup chopped candied cherries
10 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted
1/4 cup chopped white chocolate
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 1-quart dish with plastic wrap. Grease a 10-inch
square and a 6-inch square cake pan and line both with waxed paper.
Sponge Cake: Beat the eggs and sugar in a large bowl over a pan of steaming
water until the mixture is light and frothy and leaves a trail. Remove the bowl
from the pan and beat until the mixture is cold. Fold the sifted dry ingredients
into the mixture with a large metal spoon, being careful not to over fold and lose
volume. Pour the cooled, melted butter down the side of the bowl and gently fold
in. Pour the mixture into the 2 cake pans and bake for 10 minutes, or until firm
to the touch. Cool on a wire rack and peel off the waxed paper.
Using a cake pan or plate as a guide, cut a 10-inch circle from the larger cake.
Cut out a small wedge to make it more pliable and easier to fit in the round bowl.
Push the cake gently into the bowl to line it, cutting off any that overlaps. From
the second cake, cut a circle the same size as the bowl top. Brush all the cake
with the combined brandy and liquor.
Filling: Beat the cream and confectioners' sugar to soft peaks
and divide between 2 bowls. To the first bowl, add the nuts, chopped chocolate and
cherries. Spoon into the cake lined bowl and hollow out the center with the back
of a spoon, making sure the layer of cream cheese is even. Refrigerate for 30 minutes
Mix a third of the melted chocolate into the second bowl of whipped cream-mixing
with a little of the cream first, before adding to the rest. Spoon into the hollowed
center of the chilled Zuccotto, level using a metal spatula and press the circle
of cake on top. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Invert the bowl onto a wire rack and turn out the Zuccotto.
Take the remaining melted chocolate and stir to cool slightly. Pour over the Zuccotto and tap the rack
to make sure the chocolate covers the whole of the cake.
Refrigerate until set.
Melt the white chocolate and flick it over the Zuccotto with a fork.