Zucotto with Plum Compote

Carmen Niehaus, Plums

Zucotto is an rich Italian trifle which works beautifully with a plum sauce.

  • Serves 6
  • Preparation time: 40 min
  • Standing time: 6 hours



  • 500 ml (2 c) cream
  • 90 ml (6 T) caster sugar
  • 10 ml (2 t) vanilla essence
  • 10 ml (2 t) instant coffee granules, dissolved in 15 ml (1 T) boiling water
  • 50 g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 50 g almond flakes, toasted
  • grated rind of 1 orange
  • 100g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 1 store-bought sponge cake, cut into triangles
  • 100g sponge fingers
  • 160ml (2/3c) amaretto liqueur or cherry liqueur
  • Icing sugar for dusting

Plum Compote

  • 5 plums, cut into pieces
  • 80ml (1/3c) sugar
  • 250ml (1c) orange juice
  • 5ml (1t) vanilla essence

To Serve

  • extra fresh plums, sliced
  • blue berries or strawberries
  • mint sprigs



  1. Beat the cream, caster sugar and vanilla essence until thick, split in three parts.
  2. Add coffee to the first part and chopped chocolate, almond flakes and the grated orange rind to the next lot.
  3. Melt the chocolate and add to the last part of cream.
  4. Line a large bowl with the sponge cake and sponge fingers and sprinkle with the liqueur.
  5. Spread some coffee cream over the cake layer, then add a layer of the almond flake cream mix and spoon the chocolate mixture on top.
  6. Arrange the rest of the sponge cake triangles and sponge fingers on top. Sprinkle with liqueur. Refrigerate for 6 hours.


Place fruit, sugar and orange juice in a saucepan and cook till just soft but still intact. Add the vanilla essence.

To Serve

Turn out the Zucotto on to a serving platter. Spoon over some compote and arrange some fresh fruit on the side. Finish with mint sprigs.