Zuppa Inglese (Italian sponge cake with pastry cream)

 Zuppa Inglese (Italian sponge cake with pastry cream)

Despite its name (“English soup”), this is a traditional ancient Italian dessert made with pan di spagna (“Italian sponge cake”), alchermes liquor and crema pasticcera (“Italian pastry cream”). It’s simply creamy and delicious, trust me!




Preparation time: 180 min   Serving: 5

Ingredients for pan di spagna:

  • 3 eggs

  • 125/130 g (1/2 cup) sugar

  • 80 g (1/3 cup) flour

  • Organic pure vanilla (powdered)


Preheat the oven to 180/200°C. (375 F)

  • Beat the eggs whites until it’s a think, fluffy mix (“snow eggs”) and add all the other ingredients stirring well.

  • Pour the batter into a baking tin, covered with a sheet of parchment paper. Spread the dough and bake for 10-12 minutes. (Cooking times and temperature may vary slightly depending on your oven)

  • As soon as you remove it from the oven, remove the cake from the pan, place on top of another cake pan, cover with a wet towel and let it cool. This way you’ll be able to remove and cut the layer of cake easily.

In the meantime, let’s prepare the yummy cream for the filling.

Ingredients for the cream:

  • 4 eggs

  • 500/600 ml (2 ½ cups) whole fat milk

  • 120 g (1/2 cup) sugar

  • 50 g (3 ½ tbsp.,) flour

  • 1 tbsp. potato starch (optional)

  • Lemon and/or orange zest (optional)

  • 1 tbs. of powdered cocoa


  • Warm the milk with vanilla and lemon zest.

  • In a bowl, beat the eggs with sugar. Then add the flour and the starch. Gently add the milk and stir very well.  Then return the cream to the pot and the pot to the fire, continuing stirring gently, until it reaches a slow boil.

  • Now divide the cream in half into two bowls. Add the chocolate into one bowl and mixing well.

  • In a transparent bowl, place a layer of pan di spagna soaked in alchermes liquor and cover with a layer of chocolate cream. Add another layer of pan di spagna and yellow cream. You can add as many layers as you want and decorate with chocolate, strawberries, or meringue!

Place in the fridge until ready to serve.

You can also layer the ingredients in a jar for a special presentation.


  Hope you Enjoy!

 We Love Ya, Dominic & Frank

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