Strawberry Fraisier Cake
First things first let’s make the genoise sponge. Pre-heat your oven to 180°C/160°C/Gas Mark 4. Grease and line 2 x 7” round cake tins.
Pop the eggs and caster sugar in a heat proof bowl. Put a pan filled about ¼ with water over a medium heat and allow to boil, once boiling remove from the heat and place the bowl with the eggs yolk mixture over the pan of boiling water. Ensure the water does not touch the base of the bowl, if it does empty some water out of the pan.
Using an electric hand whisk, whisk the mixture over the pan on a low speed for about 5 minutes until it is pale and at least doubled in size.
Increase the whisk speed to medium and continue whisking for another 5 minutes until the mixture forms ribbons, this is when you can form visible ribbons of mixture when you lift the whisk out.
Remove the bowl from the pan and sieve the flour over the top of the mixture. Gently fold the flour into the mixture being careful not to knock too much air out of the mixture. Pop in the melted butter and Vanilla Paste and fold these through the mixture.
Divide of the mixture between your 2 prepared cake tins and smooth out the mixture into the tins using a palette knife.
Bake your sponge for 15-20 minutes until golden brown and a skewer popped into the sponge comes out clean. leave to cool in the tins for 10 minutes and then remove and pop on a wire rack to cool completely.
Now it’s time to make the cream patisserie filling, Pop the gelatine leaves in a bowl and cover with cold water leave for 5-10 minutes to soften.
Now pop the egg yolk, caster sugar and corn flour in a bowl and whisk together to make a smooth paste.
Pour the milk and Vanilla Paste into a saucepan and pop over a medium heat stirring until simmering. Pour half the hot milk mixture into the egg yolk mixture and whisk to combine. Pour back into the remaining milk mixture. Pop the pan back over a medium heat and continuously whisk until the mixture begins to bubble. As it bubbles it’ll thicken, continue to whisk for 30 seconds and then remove from the heat.
Squeeze any excess water from the gelatine and pop into the hot mixture stir in until melted. Pour your cream patisserie into a large bowl and cover with cling film so it touches the surface of the mixture, this prevents a skin forming. Pop in the fridge to cool to room temperature.
Once your cream patisserie filling is at room temperature, whisk the cream until it forms soft peaks and whisk the cream patisserie to loosen it. Pop the whipped cream into the cream patisserie and whisk to combine. This creates a lovely light and creamy filling. Leave at room temperature until ready to assemble the cake.
Whist your cream patisserie filling is cooling it’s time to make your strawberry layer to finish off your fraiser cake. Pop your chopped strawberry in a saucepan with the caster sugar. Cover with a pan lid and leave to simmer on a low heat for about 10 minutes, do not stir the mixture. Whilst your strawberry mixture is simmering soak the gelatine leaves just like you did before in some cold water.
Once the strawberry mixture has simmered, drain the mixture through a sieve and catch all that lovely strawberry juice in a bowl. Pop in the soaked gelatine, make sure you squeeze out the excess water first. Stir to allow the gelatine to melt. Leave to cool at room temperature stirring every so often to make sure the jelly does not begin to set, if it does heat in the microwave for a few seconds to allow the gelatine to melt again.
Now it’s time to build your wonderful fraiser cake! Grab a serrated knife and gently cut the top your sponge so they are level. Place one layer of sponge on your serving plate or board and wrap acetate around the edge of your cake so it fits snuggly and there is no gap, this helps support your cake as you build it.
Slice your strawberries in half and place around the edge of the cake, try and pick strawberries of a similar height. Place a few spoonful’s of jam on the sponge and spread over exposed sponge.
Pop your room temperature cream patisserie into a piping bag, give it a quick whisk to loosen if needed. Cut a 1cm hole in the end of the piping bag. Pipe the filling around the edge of the strawberries to secure them in place and pipe a thin layer over the jam covered sponge.
Slice the left over strawberries thinly and place over the thin layer of cream patisserie. Pipe more cream patisserie over the top of the sliced strawberries until it reaches the top of the strawberries placed around the edge of the cake. Smooth the cream patisserie to ensure it is an even layer.
Pop the remaining sponge layer on top and pipe another thin layer of cream patisserie on top. Pop your cake in the fridge for 30 minutes to firm up.
Finally pour over the cooled jelly mixture and carefully place in the fridge.
Once the jelly has set you are ready to serve your wonderful fraiser cake! Remove from the fridge and peel off the acetate collar, tah-dah look at all those lovely layers! Keep your fraiser cake in the fridge, if it lasts that long!