By Dee514 on June 23, 2003
Photo by Chef #483004
Photo by Chef #483004
"Italian Rum Cake is a delicious 3 or 4 layer cake, which is a tradition for birthdays/special occasions in many Italian families. There are 3 basic parts to the cake; sponge cake layers, pasticciera cream (filling) and (stabilized) whipped cream. Below are the recipes for all three parts. If you make it with 3 layers, omit the whipped cream layer. The sponge cake and pasticciera creams may be made a day ahead. The whipped cream should be whipped just before assembling the cake. Prep/Cook times do not include the 3-4 hour chilling time for the pasticciera cream. PLEASE NOTE: This is an egg leavened cake! The egg yolks and whites MUST be beaten to the correct volume and consistency or the recipe will not work. Also, the other ingredients must be folded in (beaten WHITES folded INTO the YOLK/sugar mixture NOT the other way around) in the order given in the directions or the cake will not turn out. The finished layers will be thin depending on the size of your pan. The smaller the pan, the thicker the layers and the longer the baking time needed. If you are expecting this cake to turn out like a "Génoise or American sponge cake," you will be disappointed as this is not a Génoise sponge recipe."
Serving Size: 1 (270 g)
Servings Per Recipe: 12
"The cake came out awesome. My family loved it. However, it took 6 hours to make it. The pudding mixtures were too watery for the cake. I had to transport the cake & knew that the pudding mixture would be everywhere. I added 2 Tbsp. extra of flour and added 1 tsp of knox gelatin. I also thought, too many steps for a cake. Boiling a separate pan of milk was not nescessary. Also, two TBSP. of cold water for the gelatin mixture to put in the whipped creme made it more difficult. two TBSP. of hot water would be better."
"I made this for my brother's birthday and he could not have been happier. I read all the comments and followed the recipe and it was nothing but perfection! This is not a cake to tackle in one day. Doing it in stages is much simpler and allowed me to concentrate on each component of the cake. I was somewhat frightened making the sponge cake! I beat the sugar and yolks for 20 min, no problem. Whipped egg whites, again no problem. It was when I combined the yolk and sugar with the flour that I became scared. It came together like cookie dough and I though how am I going to get the egg whites mixed in? I persevered and it came out beautifully. I baked two cakes in springform pans that were greased well and I also used parchment on the bottoms. This cake is not like a traditional American/genoise sponge cake. It is heavier and has a denseness to it to absorb the rum. I will certainly be making this cake again and again. Thank you to whomever posted this recipe : ) I took some pics and will add those as well..."
"Wonderful recipe. Finally tried it. Friday, made cake and fillings. Saturday made rum glaze and topping and assembled cake. Served cake on Sunday. It was a giant hint. Need to perfect the sponge cake as my second round pan was too flat and difficult to cut in half. Lost some of the cake in both pans when I cut it. Next time will try to handle sponge cake a little better, i don't think i mixed the egg yoks, sugar, and pastry flour long enough. Custard filling was challenging, used wisk, but the vanilla and choclate turned out perfectly. I added maybe a 1/4 more of rum to the rum glaze recipe and you could really taste the rum through out the cake. I was pretty generous in splashing it on the cake layers. It was delicious and I will make this again and again. My brother wanted the Italian Rum Cake from our childhood, and he loved it. I added thawed strawberries on top of the vanilla layer. Thank you thank you for posting this recipe."
"I used this recipe for the framework but made my cake more along the structure of chef 483004. Also, I recommend using a whisk instead of the wooden spoon for the pasticciera cream. As suggested, it would have been better if I made one batch and halved it for the chocolate portion."
"My hubby found this recipe for me, and I'm eager to try it. I grew up in an Italian family, and this cake was always served on special occasions, including birthdays. We lived in the burbs of Philly, and my parents would drive into the city to a special bakery to get the cakes. My brother & I have been looking for a recipe for this cake for 30 years! Thank you so much for posting this!"
"I made this cake, and I don't see how anyone got good results with the method directed to make the sponge cake. Mixing the eggs with the sugar AND the flour (which should be CAKE flour, by the way, not PASTRY flour) makes a heavy sticky paste which cannot be folded into the egg whites while retaining their volume. I went ahead and gamely tried, but the cake came out tough and did not rise properly. I tried again using this method and it worked beautifully: Beat egg yolks with 1T lemon juice. Add 3/4 c. sugar and beat til well blended. Beat whites to soft peaks. Add the remaining sugar to the whites and beat until stiff, not dry. Stir 1/4 of the whites mixture into the egg mixture to lighten it, then spoon remaining egg whites over egg mixture. Sift cake flour on top, and gently fold all together to blend. This mixing method will give you a lighter sponge cake. Also, I found that making ONE recipe of the Pasticciera Cream is more than sufficient to fill the cake. Make the vanilla recipe, and after you add the butter, divide the mixture in half, and add 1 oz. chocolate to one-half the mixture. Lots less trouble! Other than those changes, this recipe makes a wonderful traditional cake that is perfect for any celebration! My daughter loved the one I made for her birthday! It's worth the effort."
"This is a great recipe! I searched for two hours one evening looking for an Italian Rum cake recipe, similar to the one I grew up with, and I found it here!! It requires quite a bit of work but it is well worth every minute! One addition I would make to this, would be to make extra rum syrup on the side, to drizzle over the cake slices if you or your guests prefer to have more rum flavor (which I like to have. I also decorated it with maraschino cherries and granulated peanuts. Excellent recipe!! Thanks so much for posting this recipe on the internet for me to find!! Dee"
"Thanks to #483004...this is the way this cake needs to be made. I tried making the recipe according to the poster's instructions and ended up with a frisbee."
"It takes a long time to make this cake. I made the sponge cake one day , The pastry cream then next and the whip cream then next day and assembled in the afternoon. It is delicious and worth every minute of cooking. I thought I was doing something wrong when I was making the sponge cake layer. The cake is like cookie dough until you add the egg white mixture."
"The cake was perfect...although I changed it up a bit by adding chopped almonds to the cake batter, adding chopped almonds (or unsalted chopped peanuts) between each layer of creme and decorating with toasted slivered almonds around the sides...I also substituted amaretto and sambucca for the vanilla extract in the cremes...I did have difficulty with the cake cooking properly so I persevered and altered the cooking times...so 3 times a charm...Thanks for posting this recipe."
"This was truly a delicious cake!! I had never tried Italian Rum Cake until I made this cake and I am pleasantly surprised. The cake was light, fluffy, and flavorful and the fillings added just the right amount of additional flavor and moisture. The technique for making the cake was different (and a little more challanging)than I am used to but it came out great. I used the whipped cream stabilized with gelatin and it is holding up well. I was even able to add decorations to the cake!! I'll definately make this cake again as it is a bakery worthy cake."
"This cake is delicious and worthy of a bakery. I followed the directions for the cake to the letter and used the gelatin method for the whipped cream. It is very time consuming so I did it in stages DAYS before I wanted to serve it. It was better the longer it stood in the refrigerator..we had some after it sat for 4 days and the whipped cream held up and it was moist and delicious. We had some leftover pieces I froze and it was still delicious! My mother from NJ has been looking for an authentic Italian Cream cake like the ones she used to get at local bakeries..and this is as close as she found so far. It takes awhile, but it is worth it!"
"This recipe is really bad. Something is definitely wrong with either the amounts or something. The cake is very hard and dry and it is very flat. Not a moist cake at all. I followed the directions to the 'T' and am known in our town to be a desert queen and I wouldn't dare try to serve this to our dogs."
"I only got as far as the cake or as my husband called it a flat pancake. Something isn't right with the recipe."
"The process of this cake was way to much. I followed all of the directions and ended up doubling the cake because it originally made two flat small layers. My cream was okay and the chocolate came out like wet chocolate pudding. I ended up making a ganache for that layer! Even though I used all of the rum syrup you still couldn't taste it and the didn't help the dry cake. It just did not work out for me and I really wanted it too!"
"I loved this recipie. I did how ever use the method that chef# 483004 used. I used the gelatin whipped cream method. It turned out great. I added a layer of part of a can of cherries which I crushed slightly.(the cake I grew up with had it) I also used all-purpose flour which I sifted 6X. I could not find cake flour. I also only baked the cakes for 10-12 minutes at 350 degrees. I had to make 2 more layers because the first two were to thin to slice to layer. I used a 9" dark, round cake pan. I made the cake for my family for Christmas, we had leftovers which we saved. My mother and I agree that the next time I make the cake I should make it a day or two ahead, assembled, with the rum and let it rest in the fridge. Then make the whipped cream and frost the day it to be served. It allows the flavors in the cake to blend. I added some toasted almond slices to the sides and a two inch border around the top of the cake. (I toasted them in the oven at 350 for 15 minutes until golden) on a dry cookie sheet. The cake tasted just like the one we use to eat in Winchester,MA. We mised it since we moved to South Carolina 15 years ago! Thanks for the helping us recreate our memories! This cake was not hard to make. I will do it again in April for my Mom's birthday...per her request!"
"BIG PROBLEM! The cake recipe does not fill an 11x17 pan and leave room to cut it in half to make 4 layers. I had to make 2 cakes in order to have 4 layers because the cake came out 3/4 of an inch thick. There just was not enough batter. Also at 375 it was done baking in 15 minutes...NOT 40! Hope it tastes good. Also there was barely enough whipped cream to cover the cake, not enough to decorate edges :("
"This is a recipe like no other.It was like being a child again.This was the cake that was bought at Belanopolie bakery for every birthday.I also used extra rum but that was by personal choice.I must have read every rum cake recipe on food net work none came close.I just got lucky when this one showed up.Thank You Phyllis Torturo"
"The only comment from my husband was that he would have liked a little more rum. It was exactly what my son had ordered as a birthday cake and will not be the standard. I have been trying to locate a recipe like this for over 15 years since there are no Italian bakeries in the wilds of northern Ontario"
"Oh man! I'm drooling!!! I grew up in the Newark, NJ area. This was EVERYBODY's birthday cake, EVERY year. Whether bakery-bought or home-made, this was THE cake. I don't need to make it...I can "taste" it just reading the recipe!! Tante grazie!"