Strawberry is your favorite cake? The perfect birthday cake? Do you prefer to buy it from the store instead of doing it yourself?
So you may change your mind after reading this recipe in which pastry chef Yann Couvreur reveals his tips and advice in pictures.
The sponge cake , the mousseline cream, the soaking and the assembly of this generous pastry will soon have no more secrets for you!
Let's find out together how to make this cake:
In the 1960s, the great pastry chef Gaston Lenôtre created Bagatelle, a famous dessert that has become the benchmark for our contemporary Fraisiers .
Cake composed of two layers of sponge cake topped with mousseline cream and cut strawberries. Once present in pastries all year round, it now makes an appearance during strawberry season. And that's good !
Sometimes available in wild strawberries , pistachio, strawberry compote, mousseline cream replaced by lighter whipped cream. Nothing replaces the charm of a beautiful strawberry plant when spring arrives!
Pillar of pastry, the sponge cake is not a simple plain cake. Airy as possible, it ensures the maintenance of the desserts, in all lightness. Prepared in the rules of the art and with good ingredients, it releases the irresistible flavor of good fresh eggs and butter, and its softness is incomparable.
However, victim of its apparent simplicity, it is too often made in a hurry, without spirit or patience, and turns into a tasteless sponge biscuit. This is perhaps the reason why, in modern desserts , it is often replaced by other more flavorful but also denser biscuits (loaf of genes, Joconde biscuit)
On the other hand, the softest biscuits in the pastry shop such as the Angel Cake or the Chiffon Cake do not have the delicacy of our irreplaceable sponge cake!
Below is the Fraisier recipe from pastry chef Yann Couvreur in Paris:
- For about 6 people
- Preparation 1h30
- Cooking 8 minutes
- Marinate 2 hours
- 25 hour refrigeration
Yann Couvreur Strawberry Ingredients :
- For the sponge cake : 4 eggs - 120 g sugar - 120 g flour
- For the soaking syrup : 100 g water - 40 g sugar - 20 g lime juice
- For the mousseline cream : 200 g of milk - a vanilla pod - 60 g of sugar (20g + 40g) - 2 egg yolks - ½ egg - 15 g of cream powder (or maizena or starch) - 150 g of butter
- For the strawberries marinated in lime (2 hours in advance): 200 g strawberries - 20 g sugar - ½ lime juice
- For the assembly : 500 g of strawberries
Yann Couvreur 's Strawberry Recipe :
The sponge cake :
Put a pan of water to boil to make a bain-marie and place a bowl on top. Break the eggs, add the sugar and beat with a whisk by hand to obtain a frothy mixture which will gradually thicken until it has a sabayon texture.
Remove the bowl from the bain-marie and continue to beat by hand or with an electric mixer until your mixture has cooled. Then add the sifted flour several times while mixing with a slotted spoon or a spatula, in order to preserve the lightness of the device like Yann Couvreur .
On a baking sheet lined with lightly oiled baking paper, spread the mixture using an angled spatula. Bake at 180°C for 8 minutes.
After cooling, cut out 2 circles of sponge cake (12 cm in diameter and 10 cm in diameter) using cookie cutters .
Strawberries marinated in lime (2 hours in advance):
Cut the strawberries into nice chunks, then cover with the sugar and lime juice. Mix gently with a spoon and leave to marinate for 2 hours.
The soaking syrup :
In a small saucepan, bring the water and sugar to a boil.
Off the heat, add the lime juice, filtering it so as not to incorporate the pulp and mix.
Using a brush , soak your 2 circles of sponge cake on each side with this syrup . Book.
Mousseline cream :
In a saucepan, bring the milk, the scraped vanilla and 20 g of sugar to the boil.
In a mixing bowl, beat the yolks and the half egg with a whisk , then add the 40 g cream on top.
Once the milk has boiled, pour it into the mixing bowl over the egg and powder mixture. Mix well with a whisk
Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook for a minute to thicken the mixture. Add 75 g of butter to this still hot mixture and mix well. Remove this preparation on a cling film and put in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
Once this mixture has cooled, pour it into the bowl of a mixer and emulsify with the remaining 75 g of butter (slightly softened). To book.
The assembly :
Cut the 500 g of strawberries into pretty slices. Place a high circle 14 cm in diameter on a rhodoïd sheet and garnish the bottom and the sides with the strawberry slices. Yann Couvreur sometimes makes this recipe with a silicone mold without rhodoïd sheet.
Pipe your mousseline cream and cover the strawberry slices on the bottom and sides, then smooth with an angled spatula .
Add the smallest disc of sponge cake then pipe in the mousseline cream again.
Drain the strawberries marinated in lime juice.
Fill the mold with the marinated strawberries.
Cover again with mousseline cream and smooth with the angled spatula.
Place the largest disc of sponge cake and press lightly to press it down.
Cover with mousseline cream and smooth with a spatula. Reserve in the refrigerator for 24 hours. When ready to serve, turn the strawberry and remove the ring.
Material and Utensil useful for this recipe:
The pastry knife
The knife in pastry is not at all the same as in the kitchen. It must be said that it is less used there. If working with fruit necessarily requires investing in a few good little knives, let's admit that the pastry chef handles the spatula more often than the meat grinder.
That said, there are a few pastry -specific knives, such as the marzipan knife, or the sponge cake knife. It is a hybrid knife between a spatula and a bread knife. Large format, and serrated, it allows you to cut cakes like strawberries without crushing them. It will thus slice the discs of sponge cake in their thickness, and will also be useful for cutting a mille-feuille or a meringue. Its flat shape can also be used to smooth preparations.
The pastry ring
Not to be confused with the pie ring, the pastry ring is made of a flat stainless metal band, drawing a closed and varied shape. (square, rectangle , heart-shaped pastry ring)
5 to 7 cm high on average, the pastry circle does not have a bottom and allows the assembly of various entremets . As it cannot contain liquid preparation, it is often used after cooking pasta, which will pass in the oven on hotplates. The circle then has use as a cookie cutter , before being used to mount the entremets.
Any pastry chef, even a non-professional, can benefit from the many services provided by the circle, which is essential for the production of many cakes such as the strawberry cake. There are also some extendable pastry circles of variable size, which are very practical.
Tips and Advice for making your Fraisier :
- Wait for strawberry season to buy good strawberries
- To get a nice clean finish when assembling your dessert, use a piping bag to place the cream in the small spaces between the strawberries .
- If you don't have rhodoïd during assembly, you can use a sheet of parchment paper
- To work the marzipan with a rolling pin , don't forget to use a little icing sugar to prevent it from sticking.
- For an even more original strawberry , use a pastry airbrush and a stencil to decorate your sugar paste cover.
Do it yourself !
You are now convinced that your next strawberry will surprise all your loved ones thanks to its original look and incomparable taste with that of the neighborhood bakery.
With the help of pastry chef Yann Couvreur 's tips and advice and the right equipment, this recipe will only be a formality for you.
Discover our equipment and utensils for the realization of this pastry by clicking on the image below.