• 250 g (8 oz) mascarpone cheese
  • 250 g (8 oz) shop-bought fresh vanilla custard
  • 3 tablespoons Marsala or brandy
  • 150 ml (1/4 pint) cold strong black coffee
  • 16–18 sponge fingers
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • Place the mascarpone, custard, Marsala or brandy and 1 tablespoon of the coffee in a large bowl and beat with a hand-held electric whisk for 2–3 minutes until light, fluffy and smooth.
  • Take one sponge finger at a time and dip into the cold coffee, taking care not to let the sponge get too soggy. Line a shallow dish with half the sponge fingers or divide between shallow individual dishes. Spoon over half the creamy mixture, then sift over half the cocoa powder.
  • Repeat with the remaining coffee-dipped sponge fingers, cream and cocoa powder. Chill until ready to serve.
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