Mad about French Strawberry Cake

French Strawberrry Cake

This cake came about only because I wanted to empty my fridge of the following: 1 1/2 pints of disappointingly-bland Californian strawberries, 1/2 bowl of milk chocolate cream waiting to be whipped and 1/3 cup of raspberries, which at S$8.95 a box, were too precious to let go to waste.

French Strawberrry Cake

With these ingredients in mind, I flipped through my collection of cookbooks for some inspiration and came across a recipe for French Strawberry Cake in Dorie Greenspan’s Baking with Julia. It sounded like a delightfully light cake, which was perfect after a weekend of sinfully rich chocolate desserts.

My only gripe with the recipe was that it called for a genoise sponge cake. I’ve always found genoise sponge cakes tricky to master. One turn too few of the spatula and the flour doesn’t get worked in properly; one turn too many and the batter becomes too fluid and the cake won’t rise. In my opinion, even macaron batter is a little more forgiving than genoise batter.

Despite my misgivings, I forged ahead with the Perfect Genoise recipe from the same book. The first attempt was a none-too-surprising failure; I’d overfolded the batter. I managed to salvage the top 1/3 of the cake, which was still surprisingly light and airy, and discarded the dense bottom 2/3 of the cake. The second cake, on the other hand, turned out perfect.

Slice of French Strawberry Cake

The result was a creamy yet light cake with 4 layers of genoise, 2 layers of cream and mashed strawberries (soaked overnight in sugar) and 1 thin layer of chocolate whipped cream. I even attempted piping with whipped cream - something I’d done only once before in my entire life.

Will I make this cake again? Most definitely, but perhaps I ought to get more practice with the genoise sponge first.

7 Responses to “Mad about French Strawberry Cake”

  1. Hazel Says:

    Hi Karen, I’ve tried the Baking with Julia Perfect Genoise recipe, and the cake turned out fine, though it tasted very eggy, like kueh neng koh! Was yours like this too?

  2. Karen Says:

    Hazel: I don’t remember it being eggy. It was very light and fluffy (when I got it right).

  3. Abbey + Nae Says:

    oh this looks so nice. abbie wants to eat it right now :)

  4. judy Says:


  5. Karen Says:

    Judy: I’m not an expert, but my guess would be any one of the following:

    a. The batter was over-folded.
    b. The egg whites were under-whipped.

    Don’t be discouraged! I don’t always succeed with genoise either. :(

  6. Claudia Says:

    please please please send me the recipe?


  7. nomad Says:

    i really want you to send me the recipe, i really need it before thursday april 23, so i can bake it for school. its a desert competition… so please =]]] thank you karen

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