One of my favorite things about this time of year is the fruit. In today’s case, strawberries and lemons. I love anything with berries, especially cake, and since I had lemons in the refrigerator, I thought it would be tasty to combine them for a dessert. Kind of like strawberry lemonade but in cake form.
The basis for this cake is a sponge cake. Sponge cake is similar to angel food cake in that it uses lots of eggs and no butter. A bit of a “low fat,” light cake. It’s fluffy and soaks up any liquids you brush it with and it brings back memories of eating angel food cake soaked in milk. Instead of milk, I soaked this cake in lemon juice, brushed on each cake with a pastry brush.
Have you ever tried limoncello? Angel food cake soaked in milk?
And as the title reveals, I added a bit of limoncello in the cream. If you’ve never had limoncello, you must try it at some point. It’s a crazy strong lemon liqueur imported from Italy and it has such deep flavors. I used a bit of it in the cream to bring together the lemon flavor but if you don’t have any on hand, you can opt out of it. If you choose to add it in, you won’t be disappointed!
STRAWBERRY-LEMON SPONGE CAKE WITH LIMONCELLO SPIKED CREAM
5 large eggs, separated
1 c flour
1/8 c cornstarch
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 c sugar, divided
1 tsp vanilla
2 T milk
3/4 tsp cream of tartar
8-16oz strawberries, sliced
1/4 c lemon juice
1/2 c vanilla pudding
1/2 c heavy whipping cream
2 T sugar
1 T – 2 T limoncello, depending on preference
(Whip heavy cream with sugar and limoncello until stiff peaks form)
Preheat oven to 350F.
Sift flour, cornstarch and baking powder together in a small bowl. In a separate bowl, whip egg yolks with 2/3 c sugar until light yellow in color and thick. Add in vanilla and milk. Then gently mix in flour mixture, taking care not to over mix.
In a separate bowl, whip egg whites with cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Add in remaining 1/3 c sugar and whip until stiff peaks form. Fold into yolk mixture carefully.
Divide batter into two portions and place into two 8″ round baking pans. Bake at 350F for 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of cake pans.
Loosen edges with a knife and cool cakes completely. Remove from pans carefully and place on separate plates. Using a pastry brush, brush on lemon juice on each cake and allow lemon juice to soak through.
Assembly of cake:
Place first cake on cake plate. Top with pudding and 3/4 of sliced strawberries. Top strawberries with second cake. Spread top with cream and top with remaining 1/4 of sliced strawberries.
*Actual sponge cake recipe slightly adapted from this recipe; cake recipe and cream my own.
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