Today is Pick a Strawberry Day. Did you know that? I didn’t. But isn’t it cute that there is a day reserved to celebrate such a sweet and fun activity?! And according to these interesting facts, ancient pregnant women believed if they ate strawberries their children would be born with strawberry birth marks. Funny!
We all love strawberries. You might have to wait till a warmer weather to pick your strawberries, but you can easily buy them at grocery store all season long. I love to bake with strawberries. They make everything tasty and look pretty. I just revisited this strawberry lemonade cake last week. Going to make a strawberry and chocolate cream pie and a lemon cheesecake with strawberry basil topping for my clients. Thinking about taking these mini Victoria sponge cakes to my son’s school. And we can’t have enough of this strawberry sorbet.
This cake here is like a dream. Decadent chocolate cake layers, creamy strawberry mousse and silky chocolate ganache. A very delicious cake with intense chocolate taste and fresh strawberry aroma. The light mousse helps balance the sweetness of the ganache. And you know what, it’s really simple to make. You could easily turn it into a round cake too by baking the cake layers in individual cake pans.
Oh, I realized the mousse is a bit too much for the cake. So what could you do? Enjoy it like eating jello! With a spoon.
Ingredients (one loaf-sized cake):
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream, room temperature
1/4 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup boiling water
2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin powder
3 tablespoons cold water
1 cup strawberry puree
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
200 grams dark chocolate, cut into small chunks
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon corn syrup
6 to 8 strawberries, hulled and halved
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
To prepare cake layers, preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour a 9″ x 13″ baking pan.
In a large bowl, mix together sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Crack in the egg, spoon in the sour cream, and pour in the oil and the vanilla. Mix with a wooden spoon until just combined.
Pour in the boiling water, and slowly mix until smooth and liquidy.
Pour batter in the baking pan. Smooth the top with an offset spatula. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in cake comes out clean. Cool in pan for about 10 minutes before inverting it on a piece of clean parchment paper. Let cool completely.
To prepare strawberry mousse, sprinkle gelatin over cold water, let stand for 5 minutes.
Combine strawberry puree and sugar in a small sauce pan, bring to a slight boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and add gelatin mixture. Whisk to combine well. Strain the strawberry through a fine sieve. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Whip heavy cream until it becomes stiff. Fold 1/3 of the whipped cream into the cooled strawberry mixture. Then fold in remaining cream.
To assemble, from the long side of the cake, slice it into three rectangles. Place one cake layer on the serving late and spread with strawberry mousse. Top with another cake layer and repeat the same process until you place the last cake layer. Use an offset spatula to smear the mousse squeezed out between the cake layers. Refrigerate the cake while preparing the ganache.
To prepare ganache, place the chocolate, heavy cream and corn syrup in a medium heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water. Stir the mixture using a wooden spoon until melted and smooth, about 5 minutes.
Remove cakes from the refrigerator. Pour ganache over the top of the cakes. Use an offset spatula to gently push the ganache over the sides of the cake.
Decorated with strawberries. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Before serving, sprinkle powdered sugar on top.