I write by way of introduction of Marguerite de Génoise Amandes.
Trapped air into a light rolled sponge oozing with whipped cream, a smoosh of lipstick red strawberries and 1970’s blue eyeshadow blue berries. She’s known here as Margaret.
She’s a doll on the french doily cart circuit don’t cha know!
Maybe it’s just me but I’m finding increasingly more recipes (echo of Bette Midler singing ‘you are the wind beneath my wings’) coming from the recesses of my addled mind.
Archive: Yum, yummy, super yummy, ahh the blessed Margie!
2 mixing bowls are needed, a 43 x 30 cm sponge pan and an electric whisk or really buff helper with a strong wrist action and time on their hands!
For the sponge:
3 tablespoons self-raising flour
35 g ground almonds
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or the seeds from 1 pod
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
4 large eggs + 1 large yolk, use fresh organic eggs if you can. They will need to be at room temperature
100 g white caster sugar
15 g white caster sugar about 1 tablespoon for the egg white mixFilling:
300-500 g of whipping cream
15 g white caster sugar, seeds from 1 vanilla pod
12 fresh washed and dried then chopped strawberries
15-20 fresh washed and dried blueberries.
Butter or lightly spray grease, then line with baking parchment if using a metal pan or a lightly cake spray a silicone one, I have and use both comparably. Lightly butter the surface of the paper then sprinkle with flour, tap and shake away any excess from the tin and the parchment paper. The silicone one will shrug its shoulders at the phaph of the metal option.
Preheat oven to 450ºF / 230ºC. / gas 7-8
Separate 2 eggs, and retain the whites in bowl No.1 Whisk the egg whites until foamy, just below the soft peak stage. Add the cream of tartar and continue beating until soft peaks form then add 15 g of sugar (one small spoon for mankind at a time) and whisk to stiff peak.
Back in bowl No 2: you hopefully have:-2 whole eggs and the remaining 3 yolks, plus 100 g of white caster sugar, beat with an electric mixer on high for about for 3-5 minutes so it becomes pale, thick, light and fluffy (the ribbon stage),then add the vanilla. Sift half the flour and almonds swiftly and carefully mix into the egg and sugar, cut and fold to combine, repeat and fold in the remaining flour trying to retain as much air as possible. For the best results work as swiftly as you can and then add ⅓ of the whites into the batter to lighten it, and cut and fold in the rest. Carefully and evenly pour the batter into the dressed pan, smooth if necessary, then lift the pan a few mm and drop it flat onto the worktop to release any trapped air bubbles or to teach it a lesson for all the time and grief its taken thus far.
Place in the middle of the oven and bake for about 7 to 8 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted will come out clean. Upturn the sponge as follows unless you have dozed off and have a black screen in front of you?
Lay a clean tea towel on your work surface, with a disposable dish cloth on top and another sheet of baking parchment or greaseproof on top of that. Lightly sprinkle with fine caster sugar and when the sponge is cool enough to handle gently and swiftly turn invert the tin onto the parchment paper. Say, “Ta dah” out loud or the whole thing will fail.
If the sponge doesn’t eject, ease the corner with the point of a sharp knife and release the sponge which should now be sandwiched between two pieces of parchment. Then say the Ta dah thing! Lift the parchment sponge sandwich onto a cooling rack. Whilst the sponge continues to cool whip 500 ml with a tablespoon of caster sugar and the seeds from a vanilla pod to the pleasing flopping dollop stage.
Return the sponge and parchments to the 2 cloths. The newly sugared sheet should be at the bottom. Impress a line, I use the edge of a baking tray or palette knife, a few centimeters in from the edge to make a sharp first fold line. (this makes rolling so much easier). Gently peel away the top sheet and spread with the whipped cream centrally leaving a small gap for a decent squidge at the edges, dot the cream with Blueberries and Strawberry pieces and any juice.
Ease and fold the sponge, rolling with one hand, gently ease away the sugared parchment. Holding and folding with the disposable cloth will really help, you won’t need to exert any pressure as it will fold naturally. After another Ta Dah dust with fine sugar, plate and just before you serve.
Check the side view and if you’re in luck, as I was, a dear little, sweet cheeked friend will be smiling back at you! ( you could always reserve a few berries and improvise)
I know its a long winded ( see pic of Margarets bottom as proof), but after you have made this a few it really becomes a piece of cake!