This Blanco & Rojo cake is very moist, extremely delicious and the perfect way to use all the red plump strawberries that this summer season is giving us. Thanks to the French who imported the first strawberry plants to Mexico around 1849, we now have a variety of Mexican desserts showcasing this juicy and sweet fruit.
Strawberries were my favourite fruit growing up, I remember them being so sweet, but just as the rest of other popular fruits and vegetables found in grocery stores, they have lost all sweetness and flavour. So now, I am trying to buy only strawberries directly from farmer’s market or organic sources, because I think that real flavour shouldn’t be compromised. This change means not to have available strawberries all year round, but at least I have the chance to make the best out of it each year during strawberry season and the flavour is absolutely worth it.
Don’t let this year’s strawberry season pass you by, go get the real thing and remember.. DO NOT Compromise on flavour!
Vanilla Sponge Cake
- 135g flour
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 125g sugar
Whisk eggs and sugar until light, fluffy and doubled in size. Mix in the vanilla extract. Sift the flour and slowly incorporate it into the egg mixture making sure not to deflate the eggs. Bake at 350ºF for 15 to 20 mins. in a 22cm round pan.
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup white wine
- 1 tbsp lime juice
In a saucepan at medium high heat add all the ingredients and let them come to a boil without stirring. remove from heat and let it cool down completely.
Blanco & Rojo Cake
- 1/2 cup of cream cheese softened and at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups whipping cream
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 50g icing sugar
- 300g strawberries or a combination of red berries
- 1 recipe vanilla sponge cake
Whisk the cream cheese until soft and smooth. Scrape the bottom of the pan from time to time to prevent any lumps. Once cream cheese is soft and fluffy add the whipping cream and mix until it incorporates with the cream cheese, then whisk at a higher speed together with the vanilla extract and the icing sugar until firm peaks.
Take the sponge cake bottom side up and brush the top with the simple syrup until cake is moist. Add one layer of the cream and top with the strawberries.
Happy Strawberry Season!
Passion Fruit originally from Brazil is a newer fruit to the Mexican market. It was not really well-known in Mexico, until Mexican farmers started producing it in the 90’s. Despite that, its fresh consumption is very low and it’s easier to find it in the form of pulp or juice.
I still remember the first time I tried it in a refreshing cold nieve (sorbet). It’s fresh aromatic flavour won me over immediately. Passion fruit by itself tends to taste tart, but by adding a little sugar it completely transforms the taste. Passion fruit is sometimes also added to food as it enhances the aroma because of its sweet-smelling fragrance.
I have seen that Passion Fruit is becoming more and more popular and is now used in a variety of desserts and other recipes. Today I made a delicious Mousse de Maracuyá that will win you over as well.
- 160ml whole milk
- 4 egg yolks 100g of sugar
- 150g passion fruit pulp
- 1 tbsp gelatine powder
- 240ml whipping cream
- 200g white chocolate melted
- Passion fruit jam
- 1 recipe for coconut sponge
Passion Fruit Mousse
Bring the milk to a boil. Beat egg yolks with sugar until thick and pale. While constantly whisking add some of the milk to the egg yolk to temper the mixture, keep adding the milk while beating. Once all incorporated return the mixture to the pan and cook over low heat until it reaches 183° F. Remove from heat and add the passion fruit pulp and the gelatine powder. Whisk until everything is well incorporated. Let cool to room temperature. Beat the whipping cream until soft peaks and slowly incorporate with the passion fruit mixture.
In 6 small cups start by layering a circle of the coconut sponge, then some passion fruit jam and then some of the mousse. Refrigerate until hardened. Run a knife under hot water and loosen the sides of the mousse. Unfold in another plate and pour the white melted chocolate over it. Refrigerate. Top with some berries. Serve Cold
- 5 egg whites
- 50g sugar
- 100g unsweetened dried coconut
- 40g almond meal
- 150g icing sugar
Beat the egg whites with the sugar until firm peaks. In another bowl combine the coconut, almond meal and icing sugar. Slowly incorporate with the egg whites. Spread the mixture in a baking tray prepare with wax paper and let it rest for 10 mins. Preheat oven to 350°F and bake for 10 mins or until slightly golden.
Achiote is made from the slightly bitter, earthy flavored, red annatto seeds, mixed with other spices and ground into a paste. It is widely used in Mexican cuisine mainly for marinades and salsas. It has a sweet and mild spicy flavour but it sure provides a lot of colour to any dish.
Today I am using this rich red paste to add some colour and earthiness to this mayonnaise which will pimp this dish and make it absolutely a pleasure to eat.
- 2 small white meat whole fish
- 1/4 cup of vegetable oil
- 2 garlic cloves chopped
- 4 rosemary springs finely chopped
- Salt to taste
- 30g pitted olives
- 1 1/2 tbsp capers
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 egg at room temperature
- 1 tbsp of fresh lime juice mixed with 15g Achiote paste
- 1 garlic cloves
- A big pinch of salt and pepper.
For the fish, heat a deep pan with the oil over medium high heat. Season the fish with salt. Once the oil is very hot add the rosemary and garlic, let it cook for 30 seconds and immediately add the fish. Fry for approx 10 to 12 mins each side depending of the size of the fish. With a paper towel remove the excess oil.
While the fish is frying, process in a food processor all the ingredients of the mayonnaise except for the oil which will be slowly added while vigorously mixing the paste in order to emulsify and achieve the right mayonnaise consistency.
Serve the fish with the mayonnaise, lime and coriander. Perfect to serve on a sunny day.