Every now and then I meet someone who needs to be persuaded into an extra portion of fruit. I was never one of those people. There are very few sorts of fruit that I don’t really like and that I don’t find hard to give up when I try to loose some weight. My fitness trainers always blame overindulging in sweet gifts of nature for most of my body issues! But how to resist something so fresh, ripe, organic and seasonal? In my defense, my fruit is mostly that – fruit. When, for example, strawberry tastes as delicious as it should I never add sugar or cream. I simply wash it and eat, occasionally mumbling with pleasure.
I mentioned strawberries because all farmers markets in the moment offer them for a very reasonable price. Which means I have to use them for a bake or two. My favorites are the light swiss roll made of meringue and toasted almonds with cream and strawberry filling and this simple cake, which is actually one of my favorite sweets ever.
It is usually assembled starting with a very thin sponge covered by rich strawberry cream, a layer of fruit and whipped cream topping. My family has been eating it that way for ages. And then, 2 months ago, after 25 years and numerous cakes consumed my brother declared out of the blue that he hates whipped cream and find it responsible for ruining his enjoyment in otherwise perfect desert. So I changed the traditional square shape and ditched that cream. He’s happy now.
5 spoonful sugar
5 spoonful soft flower
Break eggs and separate yolks and whites.Whisk whites until firm. Add sugar to yolks and whisk until pale and fluffy, then gently fold in whites and flour.
Line a big tray with baking paper and use spatula to spread mixture over it The star of this cake is strawberry cream, so the sponge should stay thin.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and bake for about 20 minutes. Set aside to cool.
200ml double cream
250g softened unsalted butter
1 spoonful rum (optional)
Over the pan of simmering water cook sugar, 2 whole eggs, 2 egg yolks and double cream until thickened. The pan you’re cooking in shouldn’t touch the water and you must stir the mixture all the time.
When over, set aside to cool.
Using a fork mash strawberries and add them in a mixture together with butter. Mix until pale and light. Finally add a splash of rum – it’s optional but really lifts up the taste so I strongly recommend it.
300ml double cream
Cut the fruit in slices or small cubes.
Spread a thick layer of strawberry cream over the sponge and cover it with a layer of cut fruit. When it cools down and cream becomes firm top it with whipped cream.
If you’re not a fan of whipped cream you may finish the cake with pistachios, toasted almonds or white chocolate.