Saturday, May 1, 2010

Chocolate Sponge Cake with Fruit

OK! We did dinner, what to do for dessert? It's hotter than hell right now and I need to get out tomorrow to check the capacitor on the AC again. It seems to blow the damned thing once a year. The fan to the condenser comes on, but the condenser doesn't seem to be kicking on. Thankfully, it's easy enough to replace and only costs about 19 bucks. But does get tiresome!'s now hot in the house. I need to cook dinner anyway, so something cool and fruity for dessert I think.

As you know, I've been loving the Dollar Tree frozen fruits. Today they had Organic Strawberries. 10 Oz bag of flash frozen organic strawberries for a buck. OK, they aren't going to be as pretty as fresh, but for the price...meh, I can live with it! Plus, I can put the leftovers on my cereal in the morning!

So, I went looking...normally when I do strawberry shortcakes I make a vanilla meringue dacquoise. Meringue disks flavored with vanilla bean and then baked until they are light and crunchy. It's wonderful and such a nice change from the sponge cakes. is way to humid and I am not keeping a low oven on THAT long to make these things. So, sponge cake it is. But what kind? I started searching for recipes.

I found this one for chocolate sponge cake recipe with fruit. Ok, I'm not going to do the strawberries and kiwi, but I do have frozen strawberries and blueberries. So, here we go...

Chocolate Sponge Cake

1 cup Powdered sugar
4 Eggs, room temp
1 Egg yolk, room temp
1 Tb Vanilla
1/2 cup All-purpose flour
1/4 cup Dutch process unsweetened cocoa
1/8 tsp Salt
2 Tb butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease and flour a 10" tart pan with a removable bottom. (Gods, Baker's Joy is the best stuff, ever!) Set aside.

Combine powdered sugar, eggs, egg yolk and vanilla in large mixer bowl. Beat at high speed until mixture is very thick and double in volume. In the Kitchen Aid with the balloon whip, this takes about 3 minutes. With a stand mixer with beaters, 5-8 minutes. Don't be afraid to really beat the snot out of it! It should be thick, pale, fluffy and about the consistency of whipped cream.

Stir together flour, cocoa and salt in medium bowl. Gently stir flour mixture into egg mixture by hand, 1/4 cup at a time, just until flour mixture disappears. Gently stir melted butter into batter.

Gently spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 20-25 minutes. Check around 18 minutes. Mine was perfect in 20. Cool completely.

While cake is baking and cooling, slice the strawberries while still partially frozen. It is just easier! Sprinkle with 2 Tablespoons of sugar and set aside in bowl in the fridge to get chilled and macerate. Sprinkle the blueberries with about a Tablespoon of sugar and set in the fridge as well. Place a mixing bowl in the freezer. (I'll tell you in a minute)

When ready to serve...

Take your mixing bowl from the freezer, pour in a cup or so of heavy whipping cream into the bowl. Sprinkle in 2 Tablespoons of powdered sugar and a generous teaspoon of good vanilla extract. If you want to get REALLY fancy...take 1/2 vanilla bean, slice in half, seed it and scrape the seeds into a small sauce pan. Chuck in the bean as well. Heat about 1/2 cup of the whipping cream to just a simmer, do not let it boil. Let it sit and cool for 10-15 minutes, remove the bean and chill. Add this to the other half cup of cream when chilled, add the powdered sugar and beat it until it is thick, rich and creamy.

Cut a slice of the cake. Spoon over strawberries and a few blueberries. Add a dollop of whipped cream, sprinkle with a few more blueberries and serve.

This was REALLY good. The cake is light, the fruit is sweet, the cream is right and the chocolate of the sponge is a very nice surprise!


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