My friend Eve shared this recipe and recommended it for holiday gatherings. One look at the ingredients and you know it's going to be super decadent. Devil's food, mascarpone, rum, Kahlua, B&B, and brandied cherries? Oh yeah!

Martin Howard, pastry chef at Brasserie 8 1/2 in New York, developed the recipe as part of his "Manhattan Nights" culinary program with B&B.

It's definitely a recipe for a special occasions. We assembled it in a trifle dish, but it would be right at home in individual goblets.

1/3 cup boiling water
1/3 cup cocoa powder
6 tablespoons butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1 1/4 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup buttermilk

6 egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
6 tablespoons Kahlua
1/4 cup espresso
1 pound mascarpone, room temperature
1/2 cup heavy cream
6 egg whites
1/4 cup sugar

2 cups espresso
1/4 cup B&B
1/4 cup rum
5-10 brandied cherries
cocoa powder


Whisk together boiling water and cocoa. Cover and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together butter, sugar, salt, and vanilla extract. Add eggs and continue creaming until light and fluffy. Sift together flour, baking soda and baking powder. Add alternately with buttermilk. Add cocoa and water mixture and mix until thoroughly combined. Pour into a greased 9" x 13" cake pan and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until springy to the touch.

Place egg yolks, 1/4 cup sugar, Kahlua and espresso in a bowl. Whisk together over a pot of boiling water until light and thick. Remove from pot and whisk in mascarpone and heavy cream. In a separate bowl, whip egg whites and 1/4 cup sugar to medium peak. Fold into yolk/mascarpone mixture.

Dip pieces of cake in espresso mixture and layer together in a bowl or individual glasses with filling and brandied cherries. Dust top with cocoa powder.