Friday, 12 July 2013

Celebrating the Strawberries


Strawberry Meringue Torte with White Chocolate Mouse Topping




(makes one cake with diameter 17-20 cm, height - 9 cm)


For the bases:

240 g egg whites
160 g custard sugar
170 g confectioner's sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch

Whip the egg whites and the custard sugar until stiff. Sift the confectioner's sugar and cornstarch into the meringue and fold gently. If you are using a cake ring with a certain diameter, draw three circles with that size on a parchment paper. Turn the paper with the drawings upside down and pipe the bases. 

A pastry bag with a plain circled tip could be used or just a cut bag. It is not necessary perfection to be achieved on that. However, the meringue batter will be more than enough for the bases. Attach a star tip to another pastry bag and pipe rosettes for the cake top decoration. If a different decoration is preferred and no need of small confections like the meringue rosettes, draw and pipe more circle bases. The last could be stored for up to three months and could be used as an addition to another recipes. 

Bake at 120C for at least one and a half hour. If the meringue is still soft and wet, dry for another half hour or more. Once the bases are almost cooled down, remove from the paper with care and save for the assembly.

For the strawberry filling:

240 g ripped strawberries, cut in small pieces + 5-6 whole strawberries
90 g custard sugar
7 g unflavoured gelatin
14 ml cold water
370 g heavy cream

Slice 3-4 of the whole strawberries and set aside.
Cook the strawberries with the sugar until they break down. Strain and cool the purée. Add 14 ml cold water to gelatin. Once the purée is cooled, dissolve the bloomed gelatin into it. Whip the cream until soft peaks. Fold into the strawberry mixture. Put the cake ring onto a cake base or a serving plate. Insert the first meringue disk. Cover with half of the strawberry filling. Arrange the sliced strawberries along the ring. The second meringue disk needs to be trimmed a little bit to fit the inside of the ring with the strawberries. Insert the trimmed ring and fill with second half of the filling. Top with the last meringue disk turning it upside down. Place the cake in the refrigerator. 

For the white chocolate strawberry mouse:

180 ml heavy cream
6 g unflavoured gelatin
12 ml cold water
60 g granulated sugar
3 egg whites
60 ml strawberry pureé
80 g white chocolate


Prepare the strawberry purée from 100g strawberries and one tablespoon sugar, as per the recipe for the filling. Whip the cream and place it in the refrigerator. Prepare the gelatin, adding the water. Set aside. Combine the egg whites and sugar in a heat proof bowl of a mixer over bain-marie, stirring constantly until the mixture reaches temperature of 60C. If you do not use a thermometer, make sure that the tip of your finger feels uncomfortably hot touching the mixture. Remove from the heat and beat the meringue until cooled down. Use the bain-marie for melting the chocolate. Leave to cool until beating the meringue.  Dissolve the bloomed gelatin in the strawberry pureé. Add to the white chocolate. Manually combine the cream and meringue carefully in small portions. Fold in the white chocolate mixture. Ice the top of the cake. Using a palette knife, smooth from the centre outwards. Place in a freezer for 40 min than move it back in the refrigerator for at least 5 hours. 
Decorate with the meringue rosettes and the rest of the whole strawberries. Use a strawberry leaves.

Note: if using fresh strawberries on the side of the cake, make sure that the cake will be served the same day. Fresh strawberries are juicy and this will ruin the cake appearance if stored for longer. If you will present and serve the cake the next day, avoid using the sliced strawberries. Use more fresh strawberries decorating the top of the cake, but make sure you do that just before serving.



The recipe for the Strawberry Cupcakes coming soon. Strawberry Celebration continues!


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