This week's summery Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is definitely a tribute to Southern California's unseasonably warm weather. Selected by MaryAnn of Meet Me In The Kitchen, Berry Surprise Cake is composed of a hollowed out genoise cake filled with berries and a cream/cream cheese mixture, and topped with a whipped cream frosting.
Dorie Greenspan described this cake as "reminiscent of the spirit of a charlotte russe". I'm embarassed to admit this, but I thought charlotte russe was the name of a retail clothing chain...I had no idea that it was a dessert! Okay, now that I've gotten that off my chest, moving on...
The instructions for this recipe were pretty lengthy, but logically broken down for each component of the dessert (cake, syrup, filling, topping). Here are my notes and adjustments:
After recently learning all about genoise in a pastry class (I made a chocolate mousse cake which was recently posted), I was looking forward to practicing my acquired skills. With these adjustments, I had successful results with the cake:
- Instead of the whole immersing the bowl in a skillet step, I set up a bain marie.
- I reduced the butter to 1 Tbsp.
- To incorporate the dry ingredients without overmixing, I followed a pretty nifty technique my instructor shared --- Hold the kitchenaid bowl by the handle like you would hold a coffee mug. Add the dry ingredients all at once. Gently shake the bowl as you fold in the dry ingredients. The shaking will help distribute the flour with minimal mixing.
- Instead of a springform pan, I used a buttered/floured and parchment lined 8" cake pan.
I flavored the syrup with Chambord (yum!) and doubled the amount to 2 Tbsp.
Followed the recipe as stated. in hindsight would have added a little gelatin --- keep reading and you'll know why.
I decided to slice the cake lengthwise in half and make a layer cake --- BIG MISTAKE!! The filling wasn't thick enough to suspend the berries (a mixture of raspberries, blackberries and blueberries) and to support the cake. It didn't take long for the cake to start to implode on itself. I refrigerated the cake for several hours, hoping that it would set up. A little gelatin would solved this problem --- actually, if I followed the instructions, I wouldn't be in this predicament!
Well, here is what I got when I cut a slice (I don't think Dorie intended the berry surprise to look like this):
Not the most attractive dessert, is it? The cake slice was no more appealing:
Even though my rendition of this dessert wasn't very visually appealing, it tasted delicious! Even with all of the cream and cream cheese, the filling and topping was light and it complemented the cake and berries perfectly. I'm definitely going to make a couple of adjustments to the filling and and assembly and give this recipe another go.
For the recipe, please visit MaryAnn's blog. I'm sure your eyes need to recover from my disaster, so go to the TWD blogroll to see what this cake should really look like. ;)