Seeing strawberries in the market made me wanting to eat strawberry shortcake with lots of whipped cream. But I like my cake to be the one that's soft and light, which I found the answer in this genoise. Airy genoise is made by warming the egg and sugar and then it's whipped into a billowing mixture. Flour and melted butter are folded in quickly as to not lose the air, pop it in the oven for 20 minutes and voila, the cake is done. Next, prepare lots of strawberries, slices and whole. Dry them well after washing because you don't want too much moisture in the cake.
The last thing to do is eating it--it's more fun than making the cake! Ha! Sliced strawberries are sandwiched in between the layers--with whipped cream--and more whipped cream on the outside. I'm so in love!
Strawberry Genoise with Whipped Cream
Makes 1 9-inch cake, serves 8 to 10
For the genoise:
½ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup cake flour, sifted
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
For the filling and finish:
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup water
1 teaspoon kirsch
2 cups heavy cream
2 teaspoons confectioners' sugar
3 cups strawberries, hulled and cut into ½-inch slices, plus more 10-12 strawberries, for garnish
To make the genoise: Preheat oven to 375F. Line the bottom of a 9-by-3-inch round cake pan with parchment paper.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together the eggs and granulated sugar by hand until combined. Place the bowl over but not touching simmering water in a saucepan. Gently whisk until the mixture registers 140F on an instant-read thermometer, about 3 minutes. Put the bowl on the mixer and beat with the whisk on high speed until the mixture is pale and almost tripled in volume, 5 to 8 minutes.
Remove the bowl from the mixer. Sift the flour over the egg mixture in 2 additions and carefully fold in with a large rubber spatula. Fold a large dollop into the melted butter, then fold back into the egg mixture.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake until the top of the cake is browned, about 20 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely.
Run a table knife around the edge of the pan and invert the cake onto a work surface. Turn the cake right side up, leaving the parchment paper in place. Cut the cake into 2 equal layers. Put the top layer, cut side up, on a serving plate.
To make the filling and finish: In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the granulated sugar and water. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and let the sugar syrup cool to room temperature.
In a small bowl, stir together the kirsch and sugar syrup. Brush the cake with about half of the syrup. Whip the cream and confectioners' sugar to soft peaks. Place the sliced strawberries in a bowl. Fold about one-fourth of the cream into the berries. Spread the mixture evenly on top of the cake. Position the remaining cake layer, cut side down, on top. Peel off the paper. Brush with the remaining syrup. Spread the top and sides of the cake with the remaining whipped cream.
Decorate the top of the cake with whole strawberries. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Source: adapted from William-Sonoma Collection Series Cake, by Fran Gage