Soft and fluffy chiffon cake filled with homemade strawberry curd lightened up with whipped cream. This strawberry shortcake cream cake is grand dessert for all occasions!
I am mesmerized by this light pink strawberry cream filled cake…it tastes just like a strawberry shortcake. I made this cake as a nice surprise for hubby’s return home last week. He words exactly, “This is the best dessert you have ever made.”
My husband is a strawberry cake snob. He only likes the box cake mixes. For his birthday, he refused to let me make him a “homemade” strawberry cake. It had to be from a box. So there went my fun. Ha! Not quite. I never give up on a challenge.
He was away for two weeks doing work stuff. I mentioned this last week, and how I spent the entire time in the kitchen. Well, this strawberry shortcake cream cake is another of the many recipes I was able to tackle. I was determined to make something that would convert the “cake snob” to a homemade cake. I baked it up on Thursday and had it ready for his return on Friday. Needless to say, I won this challenge.
Today’s strawberry shortcake cream cake came from Cook’s Illustrated. I used their Raspberry Charlotte recipe to guide me because I know their recipes are usually reliable. I followed the recipe fairly close, with the exception of the flavor change and a few other minor changes.
There are quite a few steps to this cake. Be sure to read through the entire recipe before you get started so you are prepared for what’s to come. And allow yourself ample time because there’s a lot of heating and cooling of ingredients. Don’t feel overwhelmed, though. Although the recipe has several steps, it really isn’t difficult.
This strawberry shortcake cream cake is full of strawberry flavor. It’s gorgeous enough for all special occasions. So get to baking!
Strawberry Shortcake Cream Cake
For the filling
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin powder
- 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
- 3 large egg yolks room temperature, reserve the whites for the cake
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 (1 pound) bag frozen strawberries you can use fresh if you have them on hand
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
For the jam
- 1/2 teaspoon unflavored gelatin powder
- 3/4 cup seedless strawberry jam
For the cake
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg plus 3 egg whites (reserved from the filling)
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
Make the filling
Sprinkle the gelatin over the 2 tablespoons of heavy cream in a small bowl and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks and cornstarch together until combined and set aside. In a medium pot, combine the strawberries, sugar, butter, and salt. Smash the strawberries to break them up and stir until the sugar is mixed in well. Cook over medium heat, whisking often until the strawberries are broken down and the mixture is bubbling, about 6 to 8 minutes.
Remove from heat and slowly add half the strawberry mixture to the egg yolks while whisking continuously to temper. Return the mixture to the pot, whisking continuously and cook until thickened, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and add in the gelatin mixture. Whisk until the gelatin has completely dissolved. Pour through a fine-mesh sieve set over a large bowl. Press the pulp with the back of a rubber spatula until only seeds remain. Discard the seeds. Set the strawberry curd aside, stirring frequently, until it has thickened and cooled to room temperature, about an hour.
Make the jam layer
In a small saucepan, sprinkle the gelatin over the jam and let sit for 5 minutes. Heat over low heat, stirring frequently until the gelatin has completely dissolved. Remove from heat and set aside.
Make the cake
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8-inch round pan and an 8-inch square pan. Line the bottoms with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the oil, sugar, egg, milk, and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and whisk until smooth.
Using a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar on low speed until frothy. Turn the speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form. Add one-third of the egg whites to the cake batter and whisk gently until the batter has loosened. Use a rubber spatula to gently fold in the remaining egg whites.
Pour 1 cup of the batter into the round pan and spread it evenly with a rubber spatula. Pour the remaining batter into the square pan and spread it evenly. Place the pans side by side in the center of the oven and bake for 8 to 10 minutes. The round cake will be done before the square cake. Neither cake should be brown.
Cool cakes on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Invert the cakes onto the wire rack and carefully remove the parchment paper. Cool completely, about 20 minutes.
Set the round cake in the center of a serving platter and spread 2 tablespoons of jam across the top. Trim about 1/8 of an inch off all edges of the square cake. Cut it in half and cut each half in half lengthwise. You should have 4 strips of cake that are equal in size. Spread each strip with 1/2 tablespoon of jam. Set a 9-inch springform pan around the round cake on the platter. Leave the clasp open and make sure there is equal space all around the cake. Lay the strips of cake long ways around the round cake, jam side in. Nestle the ends of the strips together neatly. Gently close and fasten the springform pan.
In a large bowl, beat the heavy cream on low speed until foamy. Turn the speed up to high and beat until stiff peaks form. Whisk one-third of the whipped cream into the strawberry curd to loosen. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the remaining whipped cream until well combined.
Pour the filling into the cake and spread it evenly to the edge. The filling will come up over the edge of the cake. Drizzle the remaining jam over the filling. Use a knife to swirl the jam through the filling, making a marbled pattern. Refrigerate for at least 5 hours, or up to 24 hours.
Unmold the cake by running a knife around the edge of the ring about 1/2 inch down. Release the clasp and lift to remove. Decorate the top with fresh strawberries if desired.
Passive time is not included in the total time for the recipe. The cake needs to chill for at least 5 hours before serving. Be sure to plan ahead for this.
Adapted from Cook's Illustrated.