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Drunkard's Cake Recipe - Polish Ciasto Pijak

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Polish Drunkard's Cake or Ciasto Pijak

Polish Drunkard's Cake or Ciasto Pijak

© 2009 Barbara Rolek licensed to About.com, Inc.
I learned to make this recipe for Polish drunkard's cake or ciasto pijak from Danuta Makowska who lives in the village of Lopuszna in the Podhale region of Malopolska in the southeastern mountains of Poland. The cake gets its name from the fact that the top layer of ladyfingers is soaked in rum. This is definitely not a dessert for the kiddies.

Danuta is the wedding cake maker in her village. She uses all modern techniques like rolled fondant and gum paste flowers. Here is a larger photo of drunkard's cake.

Makes 1 (13x9-inch) Polish Drunkard's Cake or Ciasto Pijak

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 2 hours

Ingredients:

  • 1 recipe Cocoa Sponge Cake (see below)
  • 1 recipe Poppyseed Sponge Cake (see below)
  • .
  • 2 cups whole-berry cherry preserves (not jam or jelly)
  • .
  • 1 recipe Vanilla Pastry Cream (see below)
  • .
  • 1 cup dark rum
  • 1 (17-ounce) package ladyfingers
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips melted with 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Preparation:

  1. Prepare Cocoa Sponge Cake Recipe, and Poppyseed Sponge Cake Recipe. Note: You may prepare double recipes of the cocoa and poppyseed sponge cakes to make thicker layers (as shown in this photo), but then you will have to bake them longer.

  2. Prepare Vanilla Pastry Cream Recipe.

  3. To assemble: On a serving platter or in a clean 13x9-inch cake pan, lay down cocoa sponge cake layer. Spread with cherry preserves and top with poppyseed cake layer.

  4. Top with cooled and thickened vanilla pastry cream, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

  5. Place rum in a small bowl and quickly dip each side of ladyfingers in it. Arrange in a single row on top of the pastry cream layer, cutting ladyfingers to fit, if necessary. You may not use all the ladyfingers. Refrigerate for one hour.

  6. Spread melted chocolate-oil mixture evenly over top of ladyfingers and sprinkle with chopped nuts. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight. Cut into small squares and serve cold or at room temperature. Refrigerate leftovers.
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