Like all Canadians I am patriotic but never more than when I am away from Canada which is why this maple leaf cake is the first one I ever baked in honour of the national holiday. In our family July 1st is more known as our first born Mitchell’s birthday but today it’s about both. There is a huge party on Trafalgar Square today and my little Canucks can’t wait to go and celebrate with the rest of the ex-pats in London. We hear the Mounties are making an appearance. I hope they are brining their horses!
I couldn’t think of a better cake for the occasion than a classic Frasier Torte- a layer of lemon and vanilla scented sponge topped with a light and silky strawberry mousse. A perfect cake for a perfect summer day for my beautiful boy. I still can’t believe he is 9!!
Ingredients for the sponge:
- eggs-3 large at room temperature
- sugar-1/2 cup
- lemon juice-1/2 lemon
- finely grated lemon zest- from 1/2 lemon
- flour-1/2 cup
- salt-1/4 teaspoon
- unsalted butter, melted-1 tablespoon
- vanilla extract-1/2 teaspoon
Ingredients for Strawberry Mousse:
- Eggs (separated)- 2
- Superfine sugar-4 tbsp.
- Strawberries (processed in a food processor to a pulp)- 3/4 cup
- Gelatine-4 tsp.
- Water-3 tbsp.
- Whipping Cream- 1 1/2 cup
- Strawberries, cut in half (to line the sides of the cake) -2 cups plus extra for decorating the top of the cake
Method for the sponge:
Preheat the oven to 325F/ 160C. Line your 9-inch springform cake pan with parchment, don’t grease the sides and set aside. Whip the eggs and sugar on high speed until they are white and more than triple in volume, then add the zest and juice of 1/2 lemon.
Sift the flour and salt together, add both to the egg mixture. In a small bowl melt a tablespoon of butter in the microwave and stir vanilla into it. Spoon a cup of the batter into that bowl and stir everything together, then add this all back to the full batter and stir gently until blended, don’t over mix as it will result in a cake that won’t rise very much. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the centre of the cake springs back when gently pressed. Cool the cake completely in the pan.
While the cake is cooling prepare the mousse.
Method for the mousse:
Beat the egg yolk and sugar until light, then whisk in the processed strawberries. Sprinkle the gelatine over the water in a small bowl and allow to go spongy, then put in the microwave for 30-40 seconds until the gelatine has dissolved. Stir in the mousse.
Whip the cream until holding its shape and fold into the mousse. Whisk the egg whites until standing in soft peaks, then fold in. Let stand in a cool place until starting to set for about 30 minutes.
To assemble the cake:
Run a knife along the side of the pan to loosen the cake and take it out, peel the parchment off. Wash the pan and dry well and put the cake back in the pan. Cut the strawberries in half and arrange closely together alongside the walls of the pan with a cut side touching the pan. Pour the mousse in the pan and smooth the top. Cover with cling wrap and put in the fridge to set for at least 4 hours.
Before serving un-mold the cake and decorate with remaining strawberries. I went for the maple leaf design in honour of Canada Day at my son’s request.
This cake is truly beautiful and impressive but if you prefer chocolate over vanilla you can try Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Cake I baked a few months ago.
Note: The sponge recipe was adapted for Anna Olson’s Frasier Torte