The holidays are when my baking really goes in to overdrive. It seems like every day leading up to New Years is filled with candy, cookie and cake making. Unfortunately that also means my gas bill goes through the roof - if only I could get some relief on that front!
So when BelGioioso approached me to come up with a dessert recipe using their mascarpone cheese the first thing I thought of was an icebox cake. A dessert that didn't require baking and was simple to put together? Right up my alley! Since I'm not a chocoholic I bypassed the classic version (made with thin chocolate wafer cookies) and settled on lemon and ginger, a favorite flavor duo of mine.
The cake was a breeze to assemble and only required an overnight chill in the fridge. If you forego making the lemon curd and opt for store bought instead you'll save yourself even more time, but the homemade is so good! I love the addition of mascarpone cheese to the whipped cream. Not only does it give the cake a delicious creaminess but it also provides much needed structure and stability to the filling.
If you're looking for a respite from the traditional, and often rich and heavy, holiday desserts I highly recommend you give this light, refreshing and easy to assemble icebox cake a try!
- ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 large egg yolks
- 2 large eggs
- Pinch of salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in to 6 pieces
- 16 ounces BelGioioso mascarpone cheese
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
- ¾ cup heavy cream, cold
- 56 to 60 2-inch wide ginger thin cookies
- Place a fine mesh strainer over a bowl, set aside. In a medium, nonreactive saucepan whisk together the lemon juice, sugar, egg yolks, eggs, and salt until combined. Add the butter and place the pan over low heat, whisking constantly until the butter is melted.
- Increase the heat to medium and whisk constantly until the mixture is thick and pudding-like, about 4 to 5 minutes. (It should coat the back of a wooden spoon and when you drag a finger through it should leave a clean line.)
- Immediately press through the fine mesh strainer and place a piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the surface. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 4 hours.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the mascarpone cheese and sugar on medium speed until well combined, about one minute, scraping down the bowl as necessary. Add 1 cup of the lemon curd and lemon juice and mix until well combined, about one minute. Scrape down bowl. Add the heavy cream and mix on low speed until combined and then slowly raise the speed, until it forms firm peaks.
- Take the ring from an 8-inch springform pan (you don't need the bottom piece) and place directly on a large plate or cake stand. Arrange the ginger thin cookies in a flat layer, approximately 9-10 cookies for each layer. (I lined the perimeter of the ring with the cookies first and then the center. You'll need to break some cookies to fill the center.) Spread one cup of the filling evenly over the cookies. Add another layer of cookies and filling until you have a total of 5 layers each of cookies and filling, ending with a layer of the filling. Make sure the top layer is smooth as much as possible.
- Place the remaining ¼ cup of lemon curd in a plastic ziploc bag and snip off one corner. Squeeze several thin lines of the lemon curd across the top of the cake. Drag a wooden skewer perpendicularly through the lines to create a marble design.
- Refrigerate cake overnight.
- Run a small paring knife around the outside of the cake and remove the sides of the pan. Cut in to wedges and serve cold.
- You'll need an 8-inch springform pan for this recipe. If you don't have one, check yard sales. You can generally pick up a used one for almost no money.