Probably my current favorite, obsession, dream life: thank you for introducing me to the way life should be.
I made this cake last year for a friend's friend's wedding. Over 30 some odd inches in diameter, one tier, multiple flats of wild strawberries and pounds of brilliant green pistachios. Many of the meals, both sweet and salty, become my favorite when they are paired with a slowing down, an enjoying of the simpler things, being great food, company and conversation.
Pan Di Spagna is a dead simple cake that needs a little care in the whipping and folding, soaking in lemon syrup and slathering of mascarpone cream. Some fresh fruit and nuts and you have a memorable meal-ender, or midnight snack.
Pan Di Spagna
Makes ½ sheet of cake, assembled is 1/4 sheet of cake.
200 grams Sugar
200 grams Pastry Flour
1 tsp Vanilla Bean Paste
1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
1 tsp Lemon Zest
30 grams Melted Unsalted Butter
½ tsp Salt
¼ tsp Baking Powder
Preheat oven 350F
1. In a mixing bowl combine eggs, sugar, vanilla bean and lemon zest.
2. Whisk over a double boiler to melt the sugar.
3. In a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk eggs on medium speed for 6-8 minutes until full foam is achieved
4. Gently fold in lemon juice combined with melted butter.
5. Sift 3 times the salt, baking powder and pastry flour.
6. Gently fold into egg foam.
7. Gently spread batter onto flat half sheet tray sprayed with pan spray and lined with ½ sheet of parchment.
8. Using thumb release the edges of the tray. (Run your thumb along the border of the sheet pan.
9. Bake for 15 minutes. Allow to cool before inverting onto a parchment lined tray.
10. Cut cooled cake in half and brush with lemon syrup and spread a layer of your favorite lemon curd.
11. Top cake with whipped mascarpone cream, fresh berries and pistachios.