Monday, May 24, 2010

strawberry apricot cake with lemon lilac mousse

last night hubs and i were talking about our favorite dishes. his are etched in stone. mine change with the seasons, with the discovery of new ingredients. he's got one breakfast, a couple soups, a couple mains, and one dessert. i could stand here all day and prattle on about mine. then we got to talking about the ultimate meal. the one you ordered if you knew you were going to die. his last bite on earth is one of his predictible favorites. beans and sausage. beef soup. corned beef hash and eggs. apple pastries. i will never be able to pick a definite, durable winner. but this cake is as good as anything, today.
after all the fuss with the lilac jelly i had to come up with stuff to use it in, other than eating it out of the jar with a spoon, at 11pm, when i went to the fridge to get 'water'. mousse was the first thing that crossed my mind. but there's something you should know about this cake: its name is albie and it's a frequent visitor. it's got a picture on the wall, like any dear relative. i make it all the time, year-round, with all sorts of fruit, fresh or frozen, and we have it with just a sprinkling of powdered sugar. it's awesome on its own. when you add that mousse you're just going overboard. in a really good way, that will never attract the dissaprovement of the clan.

for the cake:
4 eggs, separated
1 scant cup or 215gr granulated sugar
1/2 cup or 113gr unsalted butter, melted and cooled
4 tb or 60gr walnut oil
3/4 cup or 185ml milk
1 3/4 cups or 240gr all-purpose flour
1 1/2 ts baking powder
1/2 ts vanilla extract
2 cups chopped strawberries and apricots, about 325gr

sift the flour with the baking powder and a pinch of salt and set aside. beat the 4 yolks with the sugar and the butter. then add the oil and the vanilla. (if you don't have walnut oil, which is wonderful and you really should try it, you can use all butter or canola oil). alternate the flour and the milk in two additions. with clean beaters, beat the whites to stiff but not dry peaks. gently fold the whites in the batter and pour in a 13x9 pan lined with parchment. toss the fruit with 2 ts flour and place evenly over the batter. bake at 350F about 35-40 minutes. let cool in pan a few minutes, then turn unto rack and peel off parchment.

for the mousse:
1 cup prepared lilac jelly
1 oz or 28 gr gelatine
2 cups heavy cream
3 tb lemon juice
3 tb powdered sugar
pinch purple coloring, optional
2 oz chocolate, shaved, on top

sprinkle the gelatine over the lemon juice and let sit to soften. gently heat up the jelly on low heat. right below boiling, when you see little bubbles forming on the sides of the pan, add the lemon juice with the gelatine and stirr constantly until dissolved. remove from heat and let cool, stirring occasionally. you don't want to let it jell, it will be hard to work with. beat the cream to soft peaks. add the powdered sugar and continue beating until stiff. gently fold in the cooled jelly. the mixture will be soft. add the food coloring if desired and mix well.

line the same pan with plastic wrap. put the cake back in it and pour the filling over it. smooth the top and refrigerate for at least a couple hours, up to overnight. before serving top with chocolate shavings. bittersweet works best. it really does add one more dimension, don't skip it.

the picture above is the shining example of 'do what i say, not what i do'. i am gluttonous and impatient, and that's why this cake here isn't as fluffy as usual. i made the mousse while the cake cooled, then assemble it right away. this does not work. you must allow the cake to be completely cool, at least 4 hours, before you pour the mousse. also: this will be quite a lemony mousse, which i thought ideal in the 86F we had yeasterday. it was very refreshing! but taste as you go, and either sub some of the juice with water, or add more sugar...

what's your last bite on earth?


  1. Sempre molto belle le tue ricette , buona settimana :)

  2. Magnifique réalisation.
    je note ta recette.
    Bonne semaine et à bientôt.

  3. What a great thing to do with the lilac jelly! This cake looks so moist and delicious. I'm going to have to make it! And... my lilac flowers are steeping in white wine as we speak, so tomorrow, it's jelly time!

  4. Dana, Albie looks amazing, like a dessert straight off the menu of a 3 hat restaurant! I've never made a cake with a mousse topping before - thank you for the inspiration! :)

  5. stefania, molto grazie.

    nadji, merci beaucoup.

    karen, i'm so glad you're going for it!! can't wait to hear all about this white wine deal, yum!

    celia, thanks. it's one of my favorite fillings. sure, there's lots of fats, but barely any sugar, and in the mouth it's feather light. this one is tart, very refreshing. it goes head to head with my goat cheese mousse with raspberries.

  6. you made a great combo in this cake!beautiful shots!

  7. une magnifique explosion de saveurs pour les papilles ce gâteau, moi qui suis gourmande tu me tentes beaucoup ma chère dana
    bonne journée

  8. Imi place mult, mult, mult de tot!

  9. Dainty, beautiful, perfectly presented... and makes me think I should put a little more effort in to my presentation. I do rustic very well :-)
    What a lovely looking cake... I love musing what would be my last meal on earth.

  10. What a beautiful creation! I immediately went to check out that lilac jelly , another amazing find! tell me I wonder if I could make a jelly with honeysuckle? I don't have lilac here;
    you are so talented and I am subscribing to your feed

  11. tasteofbeirut, welcome! i'm very glad you found something you liked here. you can definetely make honeysuckle jelly. i only wish i could get my hands on some. it's a southern specialty, very sweet and perfumed. i can't provide a recipe, but i know it goes just like the lilac one. you must remove the stamens and stems, then you pour hot water to infuse, then boil with pectin, lemon and sugar. i can't be sure, but it think i once saw a recipe that called for 2 cups flowers, 2 cups water, 1 tb lemon juice, 1 ts lemon rind, 2 tb liquid pectin and 4 cups of sugar. insane, i know. there's pectin available now that allow for sugar-free jelly preparation. i'd go for that one, and use honey. i'll let you know if i come across a recipe.

  12. Arata foarte bine, cred ca si gustul e sublim. Felicitari!


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