May 25, 2016

Elderflower & Strawberry Cake


Spring and early summer is a time of many birthdays in our families. This year has been an especially special one as both my hubby and I turned 30. In the lead to our birthday celebrations, I experimented with various cake recipes (all with many layers!) and in the end, we settled for a gorgeous black forest chocolate cake (recipe which I found on Jo’s blog Nurturing Kitchen). The cake I had initially planned on making was this beautiful elderflower and strawberry cake. But at the time of celebrating (back in early April), strawberries were barely in season, and there was not an elder tree blooming in sight. I still made the cake a month or so later, just for us to enjoy, and for the pleasure of sharing the recipe with you today. I’ll admit that I may have stepped into a private property to pick a few elderflower's heads just for the purpose of this recipe, but this was definitely worth taking the risk! Elder trees are unfortunately not a very common sight down the part of the world where we are, on the contrary to back where we lived in England where they were a plenty. Along with strawberries, they’ll always be for me a quintessential symbol of late spring in Britain, and I find their combination absolutely delightful.


Now onto the cake, below is a list of a few side notes which I hope you will find useful:
•This recipe is adapted from the Blood Orange and Chocolate Layer Cake recipe found in Sarah Britton’s My New Roots cookbook;
•I’m showing you how to make a double-layered cake, however, I expect you could double the quantities and make a four-layered cake if you wished to;
•If you’re not keen on making the strawberry jam yourself, you could always use ready-made jam instead. However, try to find an unsweetened one that highlights the fruit taste;
•For a vegan version of this cake, you could easily substitute the Greek yogurt or labneh with the cashew/coconut icing recipe from my Vegan Carrot Cake;
•Don’t expect a light and fluffy cake, this one is deliciously sticky, reminding me of Jamaican ginger cake;
•If you have any leftovers, you can keep them in the fridge for a couple of days.

Enjoy and have a beautiful Wednesday! x

Elderflower & Strawberry Cake – Serves 8
•280g whole spelt flour
•2tsp baking powder
•1tsp baking soda
•Pinch of salt
•250ml maple syrup or agave syrup + 1tbsp
•200ml elderflower cordial (see recipe here)
•80ml rice milk
•6tbsp melted coconut oil
•2tsp vanilla extract
•300g fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped + 200g whole strawberries
•1tbsp corn flour, mixed with 2tbsp water
•6tbsp thick Greek yogurt or homemade labneh
•Elderflowers (optional)

1.Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line a 18cm springform cake pan with baking paper.
2.In a large mixing bowl, mix the flour with the baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl, mix the maple syrup with the elderflower cordial, rice milk, coconut oil and vanilla extract. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix well. Pour into the prepared cake tin, and place in the oven for about 50min, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool completely before unmolding.
3.While the cake is cooking, prepare the strawberry jam by placing the 300g strawberries in a small saucepan with 1tbsp maple syrup and 2tbsp water. Bring to a simmer, cover and leave to cook for approximately 10-15min, or until mushy. Add the corn flour and water and cook for another 2min until the mixture starts to set. Set aside to cool.
4.To assemble the cake, cut it in half lengthways, using a long sharp knife. Cover the lower half with Greek yogurt and strawberry jam and place the upper half on top. Finally, top up with fresh strawberries and elderflowers.

Gâteau à la Fleur de Sureau et aux Fraises – pour 8 personnes
•280g de farine d’épeautre complète
•2cc de poudre à lever
•1cc de bicarbonate de soude
•1 pincée de sel
•250ml de sirop d’érable + 1cs
•200ml de sirop de fleurs de sureau (voir la recette ici)
•80ml de lait de riz
•6cs d’huile de noix de coco fondue
•2cc d’extrait de vanille
•300g de fraises, équeutées et coupées en morceaux + 200g de fraises entières
•1cs de fécule de maïs mélangée à 2cs d’eau
•6cs de yaourt épais à la Grecque ou de labneh maison
•Fleurs de sureau (optionnel)

1.Préchauffer le four sur 180°C. Chemiser un moule de 18cm de diamètre de papier sulfurisé.
2.Dans un grand bol ou saladier, mélanger la farine avec la poudre à lever, le bicarbonate de soude et le sel. Dans un autre bol, mélanger le sirop d’érable avec le sirop de fleurs de sureau, le lait de riz, l’huile de coco et l’extrait de vanille. Ajouter aux ingrédients secs et bien mélanger. Verser dans le moule à gâteau et enfourner pour environ 50min ou jusqu'à ce qu’une pique en bois insérée au milieu en ressorte sèche. Laisser refroidir complètement avant de démouler.
3.Pendant que le gâteau est en train de cuire, préparer la confiture de fraises. Mettre les fraises dans une casserole avec 1cs de sirop d’érable et 2cs d’eau. Porter à ébullition, couvrir et laisser cuire 10-15min, jusqu'à ce que les fruits soient réduits en compote. Ajouter le mélange de fécule de maïs et eau et laisser cuire encore 2min, jusqu'à ce que le mélange épaississe. Laisser refroidir.
4.Pour assembler le gâteau, le couper en deux dans la hauteur à l’aide d’un grand couteau. Recouvrir la base de yaourt épais, puis d’une couche de confiture de fraises. Déposer l’autre moitié au dessus. Enfin, parsemer de fraises entières et de fleurs de sureau.

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