STRAWBERRY & CANDIED FENNEL CAKE
Welcome to the fifth and final month in my Summer of Strawberry Cake series. The strawberry plant I got in May has long ceased fruit production but my craving for cake has not. I’ve already posted about Maple Balsamic Roasted Strawberry Cake, Strawberry Mango Shortcake, Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cake and Strawberry & Apricot Almost Japanese Cheesecake so I figured it’s time to go big and bold. Or rather, bigger and bolder.
Hello Strawberry & Candied Fennel Cake. I’ve been waiting for you
I may not be enthusiastic about my birthday but I’m pretty great at other people’s, I must say. I conceptualized this cake months ago for my mother’s birthday and have been patiently awaiting September to serve her this crazy confection.
And I’m super happy to say it was worth the wait.
As the only person in my family that likes anise and licorice, I figured my mother would enjoy a fennel-flavored birthday cake. Although I had never cooked with fennel before, I knew it had a similar flavor profile so I didn’t think I would be so taken with this cake.
This sweet, fruity, creamy cake with a touch of warmth from the candied fennel.
Oh fennel, like the popular girl inevitably falling for the bespectacled shy guy in a high school movie, you’ve won me over.
Strawberry & Apricot Almost Japanese Cheesecake
Welcome to month #4 in my Summer of Strawberry Cake series. Summer may be coming to an end but the hot weather sure isn’t. If you want something delicious but not too decadent, you’re in luck. This Strawberry & Apricot Almost Japanese Cheesecake is just rich enough but will still keep you in shape for swimsuit season— provided you don’t eat the entire cake!
If you’ve never had Japanese cheesecake, you need to run out to an Asian bakery right away. I haven’t had Japanese cheesecake in quite a long time but it isn’t the sort of dessert you easily forget. Unlike Western-style cheesecake, Japanese cheesecake is light and fluffy. Rather than dense and sinfully rich, it’s pillowy soft with a hint of tangy cream cheese.
Honestly, I may just prefer Japanese cheesecake on texture alone.
(Although its calorie-saving nature is definitely a bonus!)
And my strawberry-apricot version will save you even more calories because it uses less cream cheese and less eggs than most recipes. For that reason, I’ve characterized it as “almost Japanese cheesecake” rather than a proper Japanese cheesecake.
No worries. With its swirls of apricot jam and sliced strawberries, my take on this dessert is still wonderfully airy.
And what’s more wonderful than a sweet airy cake?
A sweet airy surprise birthday cake!
CHOCOLATE COVERED STRAWBERRY CAKE
Welcome to month #3 in my Summer of Strawberry Cake series. If you’ve already checked out my Maple Balsamic Roasted Strawberry Cake and my Strawberry Mango Shortcake, it’s time for a bit of chocolate. Although in the case of this Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cake, you’re in for more than just a bit of chocolate.
Are you excited?
I thought about making this cake for my birthday but baking your own birthday cake seems a little odd— especially if you’re not even having a party. Or am I the only one who thinks that?
So if someone in your life is a big fan of chocolate, strawberries and chocolate covered strawberries, this could be their perfect birthday cake.
And it doesn’t even have any food coloring. (Although if you want a more vibrant pink, feel free to use coloring.)
Strawberry Mango Shortcake with Coconut Whipped Cream
Welcome to month #2 in my Summer of Strawberry Cake series. Since summer had just begun, last month I shared my recipe for Maple Balsamic Roasted Strawberry Cake but because the weather is heating up, I figured I’d give you a little taste of the tropics for June. Strawberry Mango Shortcake anyone?
Strawberry shortcake is one of my all-time favorite cakes. The crumbly shortcake, the juicy strawberries, the fluffy whipped cream, indescribably good. And I don’t even usually like whipped cream!
Like I mentioned last month, my family only eats strawberry shortcake every few years for my father’s birthday or Father’s Day because he doesn’t like chocolate. Occasionally we’d have fake strawberry shortcake at fundraisers or restaurants— otherwise known strawberries and canned whipped cream on angel food cake or any other kind of vanilla cake.
Strawberries and whipped cream on cake does not a strawberry shortcake make. A proper shortcake is made with a shortened dough resulting in a crumbly, biscuit-like cake. Calling a plain vanilla cake with strawberries a strawberry shortcake is like calling a waffle cone full of ice cream a Belgian waffle à la mode.
But never fear, when I say shortcake, I mean shortcake. And this shortcake happens to be made with puréed mangos for a tropical spin on a classic dessert.
MAPLE BALSAMIC ROASTED STRAWBERRY CAKE
I’ve always associated strawberry cake with summer. I guess it makes sense because strawberries grow in the summer but it goes beyond that. Maybe it’s because my mom only baked strawberry shortcake every few years— usually reserved for my dad’s birthday in May or Father’s Day in June.
It is a bit more labor intensive than many other cakes but I’d happily core strawberries and make fresh whipped cream throughout the summer for shortcake.
Although I imagine eating strawberry shortcake weekly isn’t too healthy. How about monthly? That sounds reasonable, no?
Speaking of monthly cake, this post kicks off my Summer of Strawberry Cake series where I’ll post a new strawberry cake recipe every month from now until August.