Strawberry Pimms Showstopper

Serves: 10-12

You will need

For the sponge

6 medium eggs
180g golden caster sugar
60ml light olive oil
180g plain flour 

For the Pimms Syrup

100ml Pimms
300ml lemonade
3 tbsp Bonne Maman Strawberry Conserve 

For the White Chocolate Cream

300ml carton double cream
100g white chocolate, roughly chopped

To fill and decorate

6 tbsp Bonne Maman Strawberry Conserve
225g fresh strawberries, few fresh raspberries
Caster sugar
Freeze dried strawberries, chopped pistachio nuts



Directions

1 Heat the oven to 160c, fan oven 140c, gas mark 3. Grease and line a deep, 20cm cake tin with non-stick baking parchment.

2 Use an electric mixer to whisk the eggs for about 5 minutes until pale and thick. Add the caster sugar and continue whisking until the mixture doubles in size, is very foamy and leaves a trail when you lift out the beaters.

3 Continue to whisk on high while you add the olive oil drop by drop.

4 Sift the flour into the mixture and fold in very gently with a large metal spoon.

5 Pour into the tin and bake for 40-45 minutes until the cake is golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

6 Meanwhile make the syrup. Put the Pimms, lemonade and conserve into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Bubble for 10-15 minutes until reduced and syrupy. Cool.

7 Cool the cooked cake in the tin then turn out onto a wire rack. Cut the cake into three layers. Spoon the cooled syrup over each layer.

8 To make the white chocolate cream, put the white chocolate in a small bowl over a pan of warm water and leave until melted. Dip three whole strawberries in the chocolate and chill. Whip the cream until it just begins to hold its shape and fold in the remaining melted chocolate with a balloon whisk. Keep whisking gently until the mixture is thick and spreadable.

9 To fill and decorate, spread the conserve over the sponge layers and top with the remaining strawberries, thinly sliced. Layer up the cake onto a board or a plate.

10 Cover the cake with the white chocolate cream and refrigerate overnight.

11 To make the caramel shards for decoration, line a baking sheet with foil and sprinkle over a layer of caster sugar. Pop under a hot grill for 4-5 minutes or until the sugar melts and turns golden brown. Immediately sprinkle over the freeze-dried strawberries and the pistachios. Leave to cool then break into shards. Store in an airtight container.

12 When ready to serve, pop the chocolate dipped strawberries on top of the cake with the raspberries and caramel shards. Serve immediately.

Cook’s tips: The cake is also delicious with a Prosecco syrup. Put 400ml Prosecco in a small saucepan with the strawberry conserve and bubble till syrupy as above.

Recipe courtesy of Bonne Maman



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