CLEVELAND, Ohio – When I was a 25-year-old marrying into an Italian family, my wedding cake was, of course, cassata. It was a glorious multi-layer, multi-tiered confection of sponge cake, custard and strawberries swathed in whipped cream. It was made, all those years ago, by Little Italy’s historic Corbo’s Bakery.
Last year in Sicily — an Italian island in the Mediterranean — I was surprised to learn that this cake is not a centuries-old ethnic tradition that my Sicilian great grandparents may have experienced. Instead, the whipped cream-and-strawberries version is a Cleveland interpretation of traditional Easter cassata.