Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Berry Surprise Cake - Tuesdays with Dorie

entire cake with raspberries on top

This week's TWD recipe, chosen by the lovely Mary Ann of Meet Me in the Kitchen, was a triumphant return to dessert after last week's muffins. The cake is a Berry Surprise Cake, and if it had any lower of a cake-to-cream ratio, I don't think it would qualify to be called a cake. In short, it was spectacular.

[recipe here]

slice of cake

The cake itself is a génoise, or a cake that uses air bubbles from whipping eggs as the main leavener. This recipe had a touch of baking powder as well. I'd never tried one, and I'd heard that they can be tricky, so I decided not to stress too much if it didn't turn out.

eggs and sugar in bowl

The eggs and sugar are whipped over simmering water until the sugar dissolves, and then whipped in the stand mixer until a thick ribbon is formed.

egg mixture, after beating

After the eggs are whipped, the dry ingredients are sifted over top, and then the melted butter is added and carefully folded in. I think I overdid the mixing a little, because I kept finding pockets of flour and trying to incorporate them... which inevitably spelled doom.

cake batter in pan

As you can see, the cake totally collapsed in the oven. However, an idea sprung to mind when I saw the well created by the sinkage...

sunken cake just out of the oven

I just cut a layer off of the bottom of the cake instead of the top, and used the natural well created by the cake to hold the filling instead of cutting a hole. So, I like to think of the fallen génoise as making my work a little easier ;)

layer cut from bottom of cake

The filling was a mix of cream cheese and heavy cream, with a little sugar and vanilla. A few people on the P&Q post had said that it wasn't sweet enough, but I figured it would be good as-is when combined with all of the other ingredients, especially the berries.

the filling

Here is the cake mid-filling, after spreading a little filling and adding the raspberries:

cake with first layer of filling and raspberries

The assembled cake, just before topping with the whipped cream:

assembled cake before whipped cream topping

And the finished cake:

finished cake

Continuing my trend from last week, here are the converted ingredients and the nutrition facts. Since I made the recipe as-is, that's what I've included in the nutrition facts, but there are a number of things you can do to make this lighter — first step is to have a smaller piece, and next step is to get rid of the whipped cream topping.

By the way — if you were depressed about the calories in the previous recipe, my advice is to not read any further! ;)

For cake:
84 g (2/3 c) all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
pinch salt
4 large eggs
150 g (2/3 c) sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
28 g (2 T) melted and cooled butter

For syrup:
1/3 cup water
40 g (3 T) sugar
1 T kirsch, Chambord or raspberry syrup (I used Chambord)

For filling:
170 g (6 oz) cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 c plus 2/3 c heavy cream
13.3 g (1 T) sugar
1 1/2 t vanilla extract

For topping:
1 c heavy cream
30 g (3 T) powdered sugar, sifted
1 t vanilla extract

Nutrition Facts from NutritionData.com:
(per slice of cake -- 1/8th of cake)

Calories: 505
Fat: 33 g
Saturated Fat: 19 g
Cholesterol: 211 mg
Sodium: 152 mg
Carbohydrates: 45 g
Dietary Fiber: 4 g
Protein: 7 g

I guess there are a few less calories in the cake since Dorie says to throw the excess syrup away, but I opted to create some delicious shots with it instead, just using the syrup and an equal part of vanilla vodka. They were amazing.

syrup shots

Thanks to Mare for a delicious selection! Now go check out the rest of the TWD bakers for their cake stories.

entire cake with raspberries on top


SiHaN said...

I'm so in love with the photos you've taken! and i dare say, you are really a perfectionist! That whipped cream coating never looked so neat before. Wonderful thinking with the natural crater as well. Kudos to you on the beautiful cake!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

What a delightful cake! Refreshing, pretty and delicious!



Cristine said...

Beautiful cake!!!

VeggieGirl said...


Did you purchase that plate from Crate & Barrel?? If so, then I have the same one :-D

vibi said...

No sirey! I was not going to expect anything but... perfection! WoW! What a master caker you make on that one! Beautiful, Kim!

Cathy said...

Gorgeous!! You are making me wish that I forged ahead instead of becoming a diva myself and giving up when my cake didn't rise! I had the exact same problem with the bits of flour not being incorporated, and my efforts to incorporate them resulted in overmixing/deflated eggs. I am still not sure what to do about that? Well, your cake looks fabulous --and so do those shots!

Anonymous said...

Fabulous ideas all around! Looks beautiful.

Mevrouw Cupcake said...

I'll have two shots and a fat slice of cake, thanks!

Anonymous said...

your cake is absolutely beautiful. and i love the shots.

Pollyanna said...

Ooh you are so smart! I am totally going to cut the bottom if mine sinks.

This looks amazing too! And shots...you are so clever.

Sabrina said...

You did a wonderful job! Love the shots! Brilliant!

Kimberly Johnson said...

Beautiful beautiful cake! Making shots is a brilliant idea. Of course, I didn't have any leftover syrup and I only made cupcakes! :)

ecrunner said...

You have taken some awesome photos!! This looks and sounds soooooooo delicious!! I love the shots you made with the syrup and vanilla vodka!! You are amazing!! Great job...

Natashya said...

You are so smart! Why didn't I think of that?
Your cake is absolutely stunning!

Anonymous said...

Your cake looks gorgeous! I love the contrast colors between the topping and the raspberries. Great pictures.

Pamela said...

Wow! Very innovative use of your cake there! It looks gorgeous.

Flourchild said...

Very nice looking cake. It looks sooo tasty!

Sara@Imafoodblog said...

Wow, your cake looks amazing and really professional. Great job!

Melissa said...

Your cake is gorgeous! I'd love to know your secret for getting your icing so perfectly smooth. Please share! :-)

Banjo said...

Your cake is beautiful!!! Wonderful job... :)

Rachel said...

the next time i have extra syrup i am totally making shots! great idea! and that cake looks fabulous too, of course.

chocolatechic said...

Your cake rose so well.

Gorgeous as always.

kim said...

Thanks so much, everyone! :)

@VeggieGirl, yes, it's from Crate & Barrel! :) I just got it a couple of weeks ago.

@Melissa, for the whipped cream, I used an offset spatula and turned the cake plate with one hand as I spread it with the spatula. It works really well!

Anonymous said...

that is one perfect looking cake! love the distinct layers. brilliant job on turning it upside down. you can't even tell your cake sunk! beautiful :)

Jodie said...

Wow, yours is one of the best I've seen. Great job!

Engineer Baker said...

That looks absolutely stunning! I used the same trick with my fallen cake - a well without the work! And good idea on the leftover syrup; those shots sound quite tasty.

PheMom said...

Your cake looks truly fantastic! Even though I don't drink, those shots look wonderful and sound even better. I like that you used it up. Great job!

Mary Ann said...

Your pictures are stunning! Did you have to include the calorie count? lol
Glad you liked it!

natalia said...

Ciao Kim !Your cake looks very professional :so beautiful !! I wish I was there !

Danielle said...

Very pretty! I love your pictures

steph- whisk/spoon said...

good thinking!! the cake is a beauty!

Piggy said...

Gorgeous pics! That's a great idea to fill the sinking part with cream cheese & berries. How did you slice the cake? The sides look very neat.

Amy said...

This is absolutely gorgeous, Kim!! These pictures belong in a Bon Appetit!!


Katrina said...

GREAT looking cake! Love your photos! Makes me want a bite!

kim said...

@Piggy, thanks! I just used a chef's knife to cut it (that is the longest one I have). I think it stayed intact well because it was refrigerated overnight before I cut it.

The Food Librarian said...

Absolutely lovely!!

Cooking for Comfort by Jennifer said...

You always know how to make things picture-perfect...and this one certainly doesn't disappoint! Beautiful job!!!

LyB said...

Your cake looks fab but I want one of those shots! :)

Ingrid said...

Okay, first, awesome photos! Delicious looking cake & great idea using the sunken top half of the cake as a bowl!

n.o.e said...

You really created a crisp cake out of ingredients that I could only throw in a bowl and serve with a spoon! I'm beyond impressed. Beautiful!!

Di said...

Your cake looks wonderful. And here I only thought of using the leftover syrup to decorate my plate... =)

Linda said...

Absolutely perfect looking! I'll be right over for one of those shots --- fantastic idea combining the leftover syrum w. the vanilla vodka!!! :)

Kayte said...

Well, I missed coming around last week and am I ever glad I am catching up and seeing what a wonderful job you did with that cake. Absolutely gorgeous!

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