Special equipment: a half sheet pan (11-by-17 inches); multiple 2-to-3-inch sphere molds (to make 20 spheres); a hot plate, optional
For the sponge cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a half sheet pan with parchment and butter the parchment. Whip the egg yolks and 4 ounces sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer to ribbon stage; set aside. In another bowl, whip the egg whites and the remaining 3 ounces sugar to medium-soft peak. Using a rubber spatula, fold about 1/3 of the whipped whites into the yolk mixture to lighten, then fold in the remaining white mixture. Whisk together cake flour and salt. Sift the flour mixture over the egg white/yolk mixture, and fold it in gently and thoroughly with the rubber spatula.
Pour the batter into the prepared baking sheet and bake until the cake springs back when gently pressed, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool the cake in the baking sheet for 5 minutes, and then turn it onto a wire cooking rack. Cool completely before using.
For the filling: In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip the egg yolks and 8 ounces sugar to ribbon stage. Add the mascarpone and beat until smooth, 3 to 5 minutes. In another bowl, whip the egg whites and pinch of sugar to medium-stiff peaks. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the whites into the mascarpone mixture. Cover and refrigerate until set, about 2 hours.
For the spheres: Put the candy melts in a bowl over, not in, a pot of simmering water and melt. Fill a half-sphere mold with melted candy melt and then immediately dump out the excess, so that the inside of the mold is thinly and evenly coated. Repeat with the remaining molds and melts. Refrigerate until set, about 5 minutes. Invert the molds to remove the spheres; you might have to tap them gently on the counter. They will be fragile.
For the soaking liquid: Combine the coffee, almond and coffee liqueurs, and the coffee and peppermint extracts in a shallow dish.
To assemble: Warm a hot plate or small frying pan gently. Cut 2-inch rounds of sponge cake. Soak them in the coffee mixture. Place 1 round in a candy half-sphere and top with some of the tiramisu filling. Press the edges of an empty half on the hot plate or against the warm frying pan to melt slightly, 1 or 2 seconds. Immediately glue it to a filled half to make a full sphere. Repeat with the remaining cake, soaking liquid, filling and spheres. Chill until ready to serve.
This recipe was created by a contestant during a cooking competition. It has not been tested for home use.
Consumption of raw or undercooked eggs, shellfish and meat may increase the risk of foodborne illness.
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