Most special events-weddings, anniversaries, and birthdays are commemorated with a layer cake. Homemade ones are time-consuming and difficult to make. But with high-quality prepared ingredients, such as store-bought pound cake and lemon curd, creating a delicious and beautiful layer cake takes just minutes and no skill at all. The sweetness of the golden lemon curd plays well against the brilliant raspberries as a filling for this cake, and a frosting of sweetened and spiked whipped cream turns it into a celebratory and virtually instant centerpiece.
1-1/2 cups heavy cream, chilled
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
3 tablespoons orange liqueur,
such as Grand Marnier
or Cointreau, or orange syrup
1 purchased pound cake (10-to-12-ounce package)
1 cup purchased lemon curd,
or 1/2 cup lemon or orange marmalade
Three 1/2-pint baskets raspberries,
preferably one each of red,
black, and golden berries
Whip the cream, sugar, and liqueur or orange syrup to firm peaks; set aside. Use a serrated knife to cut the cake horizontally into 3 even layers.
Place a bottom layer of cake on a platter. Spread one-third of the lemon curd or marmalade over the cake. Top with a single layer of raspberries placed in rows, using alternating berry colors if you have them. Spread one-third cup of the whipped cream over the berries, taking care not to disturb the rows. Make another layer of cake, lemon curd, berries, and cream in the same way. Top with the remaining cake layer. Spread the remaining lemon curd or marmalade over the top of the cake. Frost the top and sides with the remaining whipped cream. Decorate the top with the remaining berries.
Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 4 hours. To serve, use a serrated knife to cut thick slices.
Short & Sweet
150 Sophisticated Desserts in No Time at All
By Melanie Barnard
Houghton Mifflin Company
Hardback, $25.00, May 1999
240 pages, 8 pages of color photographs
Recipe Reprinted by permission.
This page created July 1999
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