It’s hard to believe we’re saying goodbye to January already! It’s completely passed me by. I’ve spent this cold month scribbling in recipe journals with red velvet cake batter on my elbows. And in my hair. And on my dog. (Sorry Biscuit.)
Much of this month went toward styling, shooting and re-shooting book recipes, drinking coffee and Emergen-C, and doing the most dishes ever, ever, ever. It’s a month that made me wear all my socks at once (brrrr!).
But at month’s end January made my world a snow globe, which made the cold a little more bearable. And gave me enough time to create a tutorial for homemade rolled fondant, which is a total game changer when it comes to wrapping beauty and brains and good taste all in one porcelain white sugary blanket. (I urge you to try it!)
As for this cake, I’ve beendreaming of itsince early December. The cherry chip sponge is sturdy enough to stack high, and the bright-tasting almond whipped filling is a lovely compliment. Since I had leftover homemade rolled fondant, I made sugar cookies and flavored the fondant with almond extract. I think they make an eye-pleasing accompaniment to this cake – yummy too!
I had planned on using maraschino cherries as a cake garnish, but I accidentally ate the ones I’d set aside (funny how that happens). So, I rolled some of the red fondant into little cherries and used mint stems for faux cherry stems. I think they might be even cuter than the real thing!
Cherry Chip Sponge Cake with Almond Whip
Yield: 4 servings
Source: Sprinkle Bakes original recipe
Prep: 30 minutes, total time about 1 hour
4 eggs, room
3/4 cup/150g granulated
1 tablespoon canola
1 tsp almond extract
1 cup/125g all-purpose
1 teaspoon baking
1/2 teaspoon salt
Rose or pink gel food
1 tablespoon all-purpose
1/2 cup/ 100g maraschino
2 cups/16.8 oz heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup/48g granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
4 maraschino cherries with stems
- Preheat oven to 350
degrees. Grease a 15×10 jelly-roll pan with white vegetable shortening
and line with parchment.
- In a large bowl,
beat eggs with a hand mixer for 5 minutes (I always set a timer for this, so I’m
absolutely sure the eggs are whipped to maximum volume). Properly whipped
eggs will lighten in color considerably and have the appearance of yellow cake
- With the mixer
still running, slowly add sugar and oil to the whipped eggs. Next, add
buttermilk and almond extract.
- Sift together
flour, baking powder and salt. Slowly add to the liquid
ingredients. Mix until well combined. Mix in the pink gel food color a little at a
time until the desired shade is achieved, usually about 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon.
- Sprinkle the 1 tablespoon flour over the chopped
maraschino cherries and stir briefly. Fold the flour-coated cherries into the
sponge batter. Pour batter into the
prepared pan. Bake for 12-15 minutes; check for doneness at 12 minutes. Cake is
done when it springs back when pressed in the center.
- Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before
turning it out onto a large wire rack to cool completely.
- Sparingly trim the edges of the cake with a serrated
knife so that the dimensions are 14×9. Cut the cake into four rectangles
approximately 7 x 4.5-inches. Stack the cake slices and cut into four even slices
- For the almond filling, place the heavy cream in
a large mixing bowl and whip until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes.
Gradually add in the sugar one tablespoon at a time. Add the almond extract and
whip until stiff peaks form. Transfer 1
1/2 cups whipped cream to a piping bag fitted with a large star tip. Using an
off-set spatula, frost three sponge fingers with a little of the whipped cream
and stack them; place an unfrosted sponge finger on top. Pipe an undulating line of whipped cream on
top and garnish with a maraschino cherry. Repeat with remaining sponge fingers.
- Store loosely covered in the refrigerator.