705- Fraisier Cake / كيكة الفراولة

Ingredients

The Genoise:
4 eggs
120 g white granulated sugar
120 g all-purpose white flour
1 pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla sugar or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mousseline cream:
500 ml of milk
5 egg yolks
120 g white granulated sugar
50 g cornstarch
A pinch of salt
300 g unsalted butter

Syrup:
1 teaspoon vanilla sugar or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
50 g white granulated sugar
100 ml of water

For the Decoration:
Strawberries
Powdered sugar
Almond paste

Directions

Step 1: Making The Genoise
1- In a large bowl, place the eggs. Add the sugar, vanilla sugar, and pinch of salt.
2- With an electric beater, beat the eggs for 10 minutes until the mixture becomes thick, whitish, and reaches the ribbon stage.
3- Sift the flour and add it to the egg mixture. Using a spatula, gently mix in the flour into the batter in circular motions until well integrated.
4- Pour the batter in a round baking pan of 22 cm covered with parchment paper.
5- Bake in a preheated oven to 180C / 360F for about 30 minutes until your cake gets a beautiful golden color. Let the cake cool down completely before using.

Step 2: The Mousseline Cream
1- Place the milk in a large saucepan, heat on medium-heat, and bring to a boiling point.
2- In 2 large bowls, separate the egg yolks from the egg whites. We will use the egg yolks only.
3- Add the sugar, cornstarch, and pinch of salt to the egg yolks. Using a whisk, mix well until you get a smooth texture.
4- Once the milk reaches a boiling point, add it little by little to the egg mixture while whisking. If you add the hot milk all at once or do not whisk at the same time, the eggs will cook, and you don’t want that!
6- Return the mixture in the saucepan, place on medium heat and cook for 5 minutes, while continuously mixing with the whisk, until the cream thickens.
7- Place the pastry cream in a large bowl.
8- Cover the pastry cream with a plastic wrap touching the surface to avoid the creation of a crust and place in the fridge for 30 minutes until it cools down and it reaches room temperature.
9- In a separate large bowl, place the butter at room temperature and mix with an electric beater until it becomes creamy.
10- Add the pastry cream to the butter and continue mixing until you get a smooth cream. That’s what we call Mousseline Cream!

Step 3: The Syrup
1- On medium heat, place the water, sugar, and vanilla sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil until the sugar is completely dissolved.

Step 4: The Cake Assembly
Time to put together our cake!!!
1- First, cut off the stems of the strawberries and cut the strawberries in half.
2- Once the cake has completely cooled down cut it into 2 layers.
3- Place a pastry circle on a cardboard, or directly on your presentation plate, then place a cake layer first and brush it generously with the syrup.
4- Place the strawberry halves, center outward, on the edge around the cake. Use your knife to push the cake towards the center to create a space for the strawberries between the cake edge and the pastry circle.
5- Add a layer of mousseline cream (around ⅓ of the cream amount) over the cake and spread it evenly. Using a small spatula or spoon insert the cream between the strawberries and up the circle edge so that you do not have any vacuum bubbles during unmolding.
6- Now, add a generous layer of strawberry halves.
7- Cover the strawberries with a second layer of mousseline cream.
8- Finally cover the cream with the second layer of cake and brush it with the syrup.
9- Use the last ⅓ of the cream amount to cover the top of the cake and even it out.
10- Place the cake in the refrigerator for at least 3 hour until all the layers set.

Step 5: The Cake Decoration
Around one hour before serving, decorate your cake.
1- First dust your workstation with some powdered sugar then roll the almond paste into a thin layer.
2- Take the cake, still in the circle, and run a sharp knife around the edges of the circle.
3- Place the almond paste layer on top of the cake and roll to help smoothen the surface and cut out the edges of the almond paste.
4- Use a sharp knife to clean the edges of the cake.
5- Now press gently the center of the cake and use the other hand to remove the circle around the cake.
6- Do some final cleaning, cut some strawberries for decoration, place them on the cake, and dust the cake surface with powdered sugar.
7- Place the cake in the fridge for 30 minutes to 1 hour and you are ready to serve!