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I followed Dorie Greenspan's recipe for making the sponge cake. The cake was very soft when it cooled down.

However, after sitting in the fridge overnight, it was quite tough. It was left uncovered in the fridge. Not sure if this caused it - if yes, what is the best way to keep it in the fridge while the flavours blend?

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Welcome to the site AGS. Did you use cake flour as prescribed? – BaffledCook Sep 2 '12 at 16:51
Thanks.... Yes, I did. – AGS Sep 2 '12 at 18:26

I would say the refrigeration is the culprit. Fridges suck the moisture out of anything that isn't tightly covered.

I would either wrap the cake in plastic wrap or put in an airtight tub or cake tin before refrigerating.

This will also prevent the cake from absorbing any smells in the fridge: chocolate is very prone to this.

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Thanks for the response. Will follow these tips the next time round. – AGS Sep 2 '12 at 18:29
At least with tiramisu you're soaking it in something afterward, so it might not be as big a deal if it's dried out as with a normal cake. – Jefromi Sep 2 '12 at 18:43
This isn't tiramisu though, it's a normal sponge cake with tiramisu flavours. – ElendilTheTall Sep 2 '12 at 18:53
Oops, didn't click through. Well... turn it into tiramisu I guess! – Jefromi Sep 2 '12 at 20:36

I make tiramisu from time to time, tough my recipe is much simpler (I use sponge finger instead of cake).

If have noticed that you can separate the ingredients into two categories:

Ingredients that make the tiramisu more liquid:

  • Eggs
  • Cofee

Ingredients that make the tiramisu more dry:

  • Mascarpone
  • Sugar
  • sponge fingers

So you have to adjust the relative quantities in order to have the texture that you want. How much cofee you put into the sponge fingers or the cake matters a lot too.

If your problem is that the tiramisu becomes dry after cooling down, then I have to suggestions:

  • Wrap it up into an impervious container (as mentioned in the other response, to avoid frige smell and evaporation)
  • The colder the cake, the dryer it will be. So if your cake is too liquid, you might consider putting it into the freezer a few minutes before serving; and if it's too dry you might want to let it warm up a little bit.
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