Lemon and mascarpone cake

Lemon and mascarpone cake

Torta al limone e mascarpone

The Italian Baker

I know, I know… another lemon cake! But this is no ordinary lemon cake: the texture is so light and the taste so fresh that you really need to try it! Every time I bake this at the bakery, it sells fast. Use organic lemons here, as they will make all the difference.


Quantity Ingredient

For the mascarpone frosting

Quantity Ingredient
250ml double cream
90g icing sugar
250g mascarpone cheese
3 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest

For the cake

Quantity Ingredient
little softened butter, for greasing
285g plain flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
200g sugar
4 eggs, separated
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
pinch salt
100ml vegetable oil
100ml water, at room temperature
4 lemons, grated zested
1 teaspoon pure lemon extract
1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
fresh fruit or lemon curd, to decorate


  1. Prepare the mascarpone frosting. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the cream and icing sugar until medium stiff. Change to the paddle attachment on the stand mixer and, in the same bowl, beat the mascarpone until creamy. Add the lemon zest and beat to incorporate. Put the bowl in the fridge until ready to use.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Butter two 20-cm cake tins and line the bases and sides with baking parchment.
  3. Sift the flour into a medium bowl, add the baking powder and half the sugar and whisk to combine. Set aside. Put the egg whites and cream of tartar in a large bowl and set aside.
  4. Put the yolks in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the salt, oil, water, lemon zest and extract, and vanilla and beat until mixed, then add the flour mixture and beat for 1 minute or until well mixed (do not over-mix).
  5. Using an electric hand-held whisk, whisk the egg whites until frothy, then add the remaining sugar and whisk until stiff peaks form. Fold the whisked egg whites very gently into the cake batter then divide the mixture between the prepared tins and bake in the oven for 20–25 minutes until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack.
  6. To assemble, spread a generous layer of the mascarpone frosting over one of the cakes. Place the second cake on top and spread the frosting over the top and sides. (Alternatively, you can cut each cake in half horizontally to give 4 layers of cake, spreading frosting between each layer.) Decorate with fresh fruit or pipe a crown of frosting around the edges and fill with lemon curd. Put the cake in the fridge until ready to serve.
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