Hello all again!
Before I start talking about this recipe, I would like to thank those of you who have been so supportive and patient. I have yet to find time to improve the functionality and looks of this website (but it will happen). The thought of having to tinker with settings and plugins fills me with enough dread that I procrastinate. Again, it won’t happen overnight, but it will happen. For those old enough, I just stole that line from a 90’s shampoo ad.
A friendly warning: I just came back from my long weekend away in the country and feeling very tired after a long drive. Not necessarily hangry, thank goodness, just tired. You’ll have to pardon my randomness today. Now, onto the cake.
Yeah, what about the cake, you ask? Well, unlike last week’s upside-down fiasco, this time I wasn’t hung over on hunger, anger, and lack of sleep. This time I was well-armed with energy, time, and will-power. The cake, despite its numerous components, was easy to make. I wasn’t looking forward to either making the genoise, then having to cut the top off. I wasn’t looking forward to eating it either as I had never made a genoise with which I was pleased.
Was I wrong with this one! The instructions Rose gave us were spot on. Typically, I had to read and re-read the instructions before and during the process. I knew I would regret it if I didn’t put in the effort. On a personal level, it just so happens that with Rose’s recipes, skipping a line here or there, or a word here or there, can make all the difference between failure and success. Not a good idea. And no, I wasn’t about to have two failures in a row. That would be too sad. So I read, I focused, and I kept on reading.
Sorry, I was on to something…
The genoise was easy, the results were as described in the recipe, and the flavour and texture were dreamy. The carving of the top layer was my favourite part as I got to eat the discarded cake. This part of the cake was super soft, moist, and delicate…so unlike inferior genoise recipes out there. I liked this cake so much I might just make it my default sponge cake.
I didn’t have frozen strawberries and I forgot to freeze some for the syrup so I just crushed the berries in between my fingers and proceeded as per the rest of the recipe. It was all good! The world didn’t cave in as I thought it would. The syrup was delicious with lots of body, to boost.
The only thing that troubled me (slightly) was the fact that I couldn’t get the sides of the resulting cake to look tidy and neat. I tried but the more I tidied the sides the worse they looked. It was fortunate that I had plenty of energy that day as I decided to make the strawberry jam whipped cream and use it as an icing. As you can see, not the most gorgeous of results but I was ok with that. The other reason for icing the sides of the cake was that this cake was to be consumed during Easter celebrations. That meant a couple of days in the fridge and I was afraid the cake would dehydrate in the meantime. A minor thing, the strawberries looked dull after refrigeration. I would recommend glazing (or re-glazing) the berries before serving. Next time I would serve this cake freshly made, no refrigeration, no dullness, and I’m sure its flavour would be more intense, sharper maybe. Not that it wasn’t delicious, my guests gobbled it up with delight. I just happened to have stolen a little sliver of cake prior to icing it.
All in all, this cake had great texture, much better than many other cakes of the same genre. The strawberries really made the cake shine so, please, buy the best strawberries you can afford. I used organic strawberries and their flavour was extraordinary. Of course, it helps that strawberries are still abundant around here. You could actually taste strawberry-ness in them! The strawberry cream with which the cake was served was such a lovely addition, sweet and mildly tangy.
I did make the optional rhubarb compote and it was terrific. I made an additional quantity of it and made a rhubarb pie with. Delicious!
Have a lovely week. See you next time!
Strawberry pulp and nectar, not from frozen strawberries