Lemon & Berry Stripe Cake

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The Reveal:

Another cake! This one was likely going to be a challenge, as the stripes were vertical instead of the usual horizontal layered look. Visually this cake was bright and cheerful, prompted by Ottolenghi and Goh’s desire for more colour in the book. I find this a bit surprising as I’ve baked with quite a bit of fruit over the past few months.

The recipe actually calls for blackcurrants, but we couldn’t find them so we went with the recommended alternative. I’m really happy to be practicing full cakes lately, as I usually opt for cupcakes. These full cakes are a bit more extravagant and classic, which I like!

The Bake:

We baked this cake on a Sunday afternoon, which worked out nicely. We ended up grabbing drinks with friends from Mexico, and we got to share the cake with them.

As the cake is baked as a sheet and rolled into a giant roulade, we had to pick up a new baking sheet from the dollar store. After zesting a lemon, I separated eight eggs and used the yolks in the batter base. Many of these Ottolenghi and Goh cakes seem to be very egg-heavy. This one had a stiff-peaked meringue folded into it as the only rising agent. There was no butter or milk.

Once the sheet cake was in the oven, I prepared the berry puree using my Magic Bullet, which was very annoying. I had to split the berries into 3 parts and cut the giant strawberries. I really need to invest in a proper food processor or blender. I’m glad that the recipe called for a sieve after simmering the puree. I have a strong (some would say bizarre) aversion to berry seeds.

The berry buttercream was very surprising. It called for whipped egg yolk, sugar syrup with vanilla bean, a bit of the purée, and a ridiculous amount of butter.

After meeting up with the friends from Mexico for drinks at Bandit Brewery (a local favourite with a great patio), it was construction time. While the cake was still warm, I carefully rolled the slab over a kitchen towel to “train” it. When it cooled, I unrolled the cake and cut 3 even strips, spread the icing, and made a giant roulade on my round tray. This was followed by more icing on top, fresh berries, and the purée.

The Taste:

The sponge-like lemon cake, rich and fluffy buttercream, and flavourful berry purée were a perfect medley of summery goodness. It’s really difficult to only eat one piece!

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