Berry Mascarpone Layer Cake
This Berry Mascarpone Layer Cake has layers of fluffy vanilla cake, fresh berry filling and mascarpone whipped cream frosting! It’s light, fruity and perfect for spring!
I never really realized how much of an effect caffeine has until I stopped drinking it recently. As part of the IVF process, caffeine isn’t really recommended so I’ve been doing my best to not drink it. Since soda has less caffeine than coffee, I’ll have a little if I’m desperate. I’d rather have coffee though. 🙁 Much more yummy.
Point is though – the lack of a picker-upper is brutal! And the tiredness is making me crave a way to increase energy so now I just want to eat all the carbs and sugar, which I’m also avoiding. Sometimes I feel like I just can’t eat anything. It’s not a good situation. I’ve gotta find a way to muster up some energy!
My go-to move right now is to play some of my favorite music and dance around while working. Gets the blood flowing and pumps me up. 🙂 Yay for 90s music! That’s my era.
And this is my cake.
Boy, do I love this cake! Fresh berries are some of the best things ever and we’ve had them galore for the last month or so. I can’t get enough of them! Especially the blueberries and strawberries. I just want to eat a carton at a time. And I can eat fruit – yay! 🙂
This cake starts with a moist and easy vanilla cake. The batter is so easy to put together, you could simply use a whisk to combine everything if you wanted. I always love a good stand mixer – it takes the work out of it for you – but you could do it by hand. Just combine the dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately, then add them all together with a little water. Done! Plus, the ingredients are all nice and straight forward. Rock on.
Then there’s the berry filling. You could almost think of it as a homemade jam, but not quite as thick. I used an even mix of strawberries, blueberries and raspberries, but you could use whatever combo you like. The berries are purred in a food processor, then cooked over heat with some sugar and cornstarch. The heat reduces the liquid a bit and the cornstarch helps thicken everything. Once it’s cooled, you’ve got the perfect berry filling!
The mascarpone whipped cream frosting is used both to add to the cake filling and to frost the cake. I love how light this frosting is! You basically make whipped cream and add mascarpone cheese to it. The mascarpone flavor is lighter than a more straight forward mascarpone frosting, but this version runs much less risk of getting a super soft mascarpone frosting. Just be sure to add the full amount of powdered sugar to make sure the frosting stays stable. It makes a great addition to the cake and keeps things light and fresh!
The final cake is perfect for spring, Easter and all through the summer! It was a huge hit!
Berry Mascarpone Layer Cake
Yield: 12-14 slices
2 1/2 cups (325g) all purpose flour
2 cups (414g) sugar
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup (240ml) milk
1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 cup (240ml) water
1 1/2 cup (240g) mixed berries (I used strawberries, blueberries and raspberries)
3 tbsp (45ml) water
3/4 cup (155g) sugar
3 tbsp cornstarch
Whipped Mascarpone Frosting
2 1/2 cups (720ml) heavy whipping cream, cold
1 1/2 cups (173g) powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
16 oz (452g) mascarpone cheese, chilled
1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare three 8 inch cake pans with non-stick baking spray and parchment paper in the bottom. These cakes can have a tendency to stick to the pans a bit, so I strongly recommend the parchment paper in the bottom.
2. Add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt to a large mixer bowl and combine. Set aside.
3. Add the milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract and eggs to a medium sized bowl and combine.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and beat until well combined.
5. Slowly add the water to the batter and mix on low speed until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
6. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans and bake for 24-28 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.
7. Remove the cakes from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to finish cooling. These cakes can have a tendency to stick to the pans a bit so jiggle them a bit to loosen from the sides of the pan before turning the cakes out to cool.
8. To make the berry topping, add the berries and water to a food processor and puree until smooth. You should end up with about 2/3 cup puree.
9. Combine the sugar and cornstarch in a medium saucepan. Stir in the berry puree.
10. Cook over medium heat, stirring consistently until mixture thickens and comes to a boil, about 8-10 minutes.
11. Allow to boil for 1 minute, then remove from heat. Refrigerate and allow to cool completely.
Frosting and Assembly
12. Add the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar and vanilla extract to a large mixer bowl and whip on high speed until soft peaks form.
13. Add the mascarpone cheese to the whipped cream and whip until stiff peaks form. It will happen fairly quickly. Set whipped frosting in the refrigerator.
14. To assemble the cake, use a large serrated knife to remove the domes from the top of the cakes.
15. Place the first layer of cake on a serving plate or a cardboard cake round. Pipe a dam of frosting around the outside of the cake. I use Ateco tip 808 for the dam so that it’s tall.
16. Spread half of the berry filling evenly on top of the cake layer, inside the dam. It should fill the dam about half way full.
17. Add some additional mascarpone frosting to the top of the berry filling and spread into an even layer to fill in the remaining dam space.
18. Add the second layer of cake and repeat the filling layer with the remaining berry filling and additional mascarpone frosting.
19. Add the final layer of cake on top, then smooth out the frosting around the sides of the cake.
20. Frost the outside of the cake, then use an icing decorator (I use this one) to add a striped pattern to the sides.
21. Finish off the cake with some swirls of frosting and fresh berries.
22. Refrigerate cake until ready to serve. Cake is best for 2-3 days.
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