Sweet ricotta cheese filling separates three moist yellow cake layers in this Italian pastry-inspired cake. It's frosted with a duo of mascarpone buttercream and rich chocolate ganache, and crowned with six irresistible mini cannoli.
One of my favorite jobs as a recipe developer is planning a new layer cake. Although I love pies, cookies, and pastries, for me, cake has always provided a very rich well of inspiration from which to draw. I can piece together my favorite components and flavors, stack them high and make them pretty with swirls of frosting. Sometimes those flavors come with the added ingredient of nostalgia, and that is the case here; mascarpone buttercream I once tasted on wedding cake and orange-ricotta filling from a cannoli enjoyed while on vacation.
The finished cake is rich yet deceptively light, and its ricotta filling speckled with mini chips makes the inspiration unmistakable. One thing is for certain, there can be no improvement upon classic Italian cannoli, but we can celebrate the pastry in a larger and more slice-able way with this delicious cake.
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