Guest Post: Sabayon Cake

This week we are very excited to have a guest post here on Oh La Vache! It comes from Elizabeth, who is an incredibly talented and blogs at PressureCookerPros. When you read on you will discover why the blog is called that and you will be even more in awe of Elizabeth. We met via social media and I was so impressed with her recipes and writing that I invited her to supply a French-themed recipe for this blog. So, without further ado, here’s Elizabeth and her Sabayon Cake.

Sabayon Cake by Elizabeth Nitz

When Luca gave me the topic of my post I was really excited because it gave me another excuse to finally make this cake again. It’s utterly delicious and the filling doesn’t make this cake overly sweet.

I started baking when I was 10 years old (I’m only 16 now!) and it was thanks to Nigella Lawson that I began my love for food. My family had never been bakers, in fact desserts and sweets were practically off the menu; coming from a Chinese family we only ever had puddings at grand affairs and even then they aren’t necessarily the desserts we think of today. So when I first made my fairy cakes, following a Mary Berry recipe of course, I started to love baking.

I loved the fact that 4 simple ingredients can be combined to form a cake and all of a sudden I got interested in baking. Delia Smith’s book on cake came into my life 4 years later and I found this recipe for a Sabayon Cake which looked really decadent. I think it could fit in a French patisserie or even one of those little petite cafes on almost every street corner in France! I think that we forget cake can sometimes make a great end to a meal and this cake would be a great finish to any meal. The filling is quite rich so you’ll only need a small slice.

I have to correct Delia Smith, from whom the recipe comes, because a sabayon is not an accurate description of the filling, rather it is a crème mousseline, which is a pastry cream base lightened with cream (sorry Delia!)

Guest Post: Sabayon Cake
  • For the sponge:
  • 115g soft light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 115g self-raising flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For the sabayon filling:
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 75g sugar
  • 40g plain flour
  • 200ml whole milk
  • 300ml double cream
  • 75g toasted almonds, skins removed, finely chopped
  1. For the sabayon filling, take a medium bowl and beat the egg yolks until they become lighter in colour. Add all the sugar and continue to whisk (using an electric whisk) for 3 minutes until the mixture is thick and pale.
  2. Add the flour a spoonful at a time and with each addition, whisk until it has been incorporated. Start to whisk in the milk slowly.
  3. Put the mixture into a pan over a medium heat and with a wooden spoon, continue stirring until the mixture has thickened. You want to take it to quite a thick consistency – the ideal texture is that the sabayon cannot be poured out of the pan. Place the filling into a bowl and cover the bowl with clingfilm, ensuring it touches the surface. Once it’s cooled completely, place it into the fridge.
  4. Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease and line the base of 2 x 20cm round sandwich tins.
  5. Place all the ingredients for the sponge into a bowl and using an electric whisk, beat the ingredients together for about 1 minutes until the ingredients are all incorporated and the mixture is smooth.
  6. Divide the cake mix between the 2 tins and then bake for about 20 – 25 minutes until the cakes feel springy in the centre. Allow them to cool in the tin for 5 minutes and then take a palette knife and run it around the edge of the tin. Turn out the cakes onto a cooling rack and peel off the paper.
  7. To assemble the cake, whisk the double cream until it holds stiff peaks. Be careful not to overbeat the cream. Loosen up the sabayon by giving it a little whisk. Fold the cream into the sabayon until it is an even paler colour.
  8. Place one half of the sponge on your serving plate or cake stand and spread about ¾ of the sabayon filling onto the sponge. Spread it all the way to the edges and then ensure that it peaks in the middle. Sandwich the cake together. Any of the filling that comes out the side can be used to provide a very thin crumb coat.
  9. Spoon the rest of the filling into a piping bag fitted with a small star nozzle and pipe lines of the filling around the outside and then stars on the top of the sponge. Sprinkle over the chopped almonds and grate over a little dark chocolate.


3 Thoughts on “Guest Post: Sabayon Cake

  1. Elizabeth is brave correcting Dame Delia! She always says she is a home cook, rather than a professional chef, so perhaps we can let her off?!

    • He is indeed. Although technically they are both wrong as creme mousseline is creme patissiere whipped into a frenzy with butter. I think we’ll let them both off though, what do you think? ;)

  2. Pingback: Guest Post: Bûche de Noël by Luca Marchiori | The School Cook

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