A classic elegant French cake that is made of two layers of sponge cake sandwiched together with a mousseline cream. Mousseline cream is very much like a custard cream but still silkier and a way more creamy because of the extra butter.
Traditionally Fraisier cake is topped with a sheet of almond paste (marzipan). But since I am not a huge fan of marzipan, I topped the cake with a glaze of strawberry jello and apricot jam.
The cake is definitely time-consuming, but it is so well worth the time and effort! Our recipe is large enough to feed a big crowd, but you can reduce it to half if you want to serve a smaller cake. For a better looking cake, use a spring form pan instead of an oven dish. I didn’t have a large spring form pan so I just used an oven glass baking dish.
For the sponge cake:
- 8 eggs
- 11/2 cups sugar
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 tablespoon sugar vanilla
- 11/2 cups all-purpose flour
- A pinch salt
- 1 kg/ about 2 lb. fresh strawberries, washed, hulled and halved
For the glaze:
- 6 tablespoons of strawberry jello
- 7 tablespoons hot water
- 8 tablespoons apricot jam
For the mousseline cream:
- 500 g. /1 lb. 2 oz. / 4 sticks butter, softened
- 5 cups milk
- 11/4 cups sugar
- 6 eggs
- 4 tablespoons flour
- 8 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- For the sponge cake:
- First off, I recommend that all sponge cake ingredients should be at room temperature.
- Preheat the oven to 180C°/350°F. Place a rack in the center of the oven. Place the egg whites in a clean bowl and beat with an electric mixer until it turns foamy. Add ½ cup of sugar and beat on high speed until soft peaks form.
- Place the egg yolks in another mixing bowl and beat on low speed for 3 minutes. Add the remaining sugar (the one cup), water and vanilla. Beat for 1 minute on low speed.
- Sprinkle half the quantity of flour and gently mix the batter. Repeat the same process with the remaining flour. Set aside.
- Gently fold in the egg yolk batter into the egg white batter. Scrape down the edges of the bowl and make sure the batter is thoroughly integrated.
- Grease a 27x40 cm /11 x16 inches baking dish using butter or non-stick spray and lightly sprinkle some flour coating the bottom of the tin.
- Transfer the batter to the cake tin. Bake about 40-45 minutes or until you insert a toothpick in the center of the cake and it comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool down. Invert the cake onto a flat dish.
For the mousseline cream:
- In a bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar. Continue to beat for 1 minute. Add the flour and cornstarch and whisk well to integrate the mixture.
- In a heavy bottomed saucepan, bring the milk and vanilla extract to a boil and add to the egg mixture. Beat thoroughly to fully homogenize the mixture. Transfer the mix to a saucepan and place over medium heat, stirring constantly until the sauce totally thickens.
- Pour the cream onto a large bowl and add half of the butter, stirring until melted and fully integrated with the cream. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent a film from forming. Set aside to cool down completely.
- Add the remaining butter and whisk well until it has a soft silky consistency.
To assemble the cake:
- First off, we have to split the cake into two pieces horizontally: Carefully cut around the circumstance of the cake with a sharp knife (about 1cm/1/2 inch deep). Take a long piece of thread, line it within the cut and pull it through the cake, dividing in half horizontally, or simply cut it with a sharp knife. (Though I prefer the thread method for better looking results
- Spread half of the mousseline cream over the lower layer of the cake. Distribute half of the strawberries evenly over the mousseline cream.
- Top with the upper cake layer and spread the rest of the mousseline cream over the top and edges of the cake.
- For the glaze, mix together the jello, water and apricot jam. Strain the glaze with a mesh strainer. Drizzle half the quantity over the cake on top. Distribute the strawberry slices on top of the cake and drizzle the remaining glaze on top of the strawberries. Enjoy!
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