Leave the Gun, Take the Cannoli Cake


6 eggs, large, separated
1 egg yolk, large
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup flour, all-purpose
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons water, cold
1 orange, zest of
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
8 ounces ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons nutella
1 teaspoon Grand Marnier (optional)
1 teaspoon Frangelico (optional)
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup extra dark chocolate, grated


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. and grease and flour a 9 or 10-inch springform pan.
Place the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer and add the 1/8 teaspoon of salt. Beat whites until foamy. Increase mixer speed to medium and continue beating the whites while gradually adding 1 cup of the sugar. You want the whites to beat into soft peaks (donít overbeat). Set aside.
In a clean bowl, beat the egg yolks with remaining 1/3 cup sugar, the flour, the baking powder, the vanilla and almond extracts and the cold water until smooth. Add the orange zest. The mixture might appear stiff or very thick but donít worry.
Gently fold in the egg whites until you have a well mixed batter.
Spoon the batter into the springform pan and bake in the middle of the oven for about 35 minutes. The top of the cake will be golden and it will spring back when pressed.
Remove the cake to a wire rack and cool completely before releasing the cake from the springform pan.
To make the filling, beat the cream cheese, the ricotta, the Nutella, the Grand Marnier and Frangelico (if using), until smooth. Gradually add the icing sugar and then stir in the chocolate chips. Set aside.
Carefully divide the cake into two equal layers. Dental floss is a great cutting tool to do this - works better than the thinnest knife for me.
Set the bottom layer on your cake tray or serving plate. Spread the filling over the cake bottom. If itís a bit loose, refrigerate the cake bottom for about 10 minutes to firm up the filling. Top the filling with the second layer of the cake and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Just before serving, dust the cake with icing sugar.