Chef Walter’s Flavors + Knowledge: Strawberry Bavarois Cake-solid Hotplate

Just on time for using the last strawberries locally harvested, this recipe will expand your culinary world in slightly new techniques. 

Once mastered you will find the method relatively simple and apply it to all fruits of choice.

For the sponge cake(hot plate meals,single element hot plate,digital heat plate):

4 large eggs

4.5 oz of sugar

4.5 oz of all-purpose flour

For the Bavarois:

1-1/2 pounds strawberries

1 lemon

6 gelatin leaves, or powder diluted in liquid

1.5 cup heavy cream

Cup of granulated sugar

For the topping:

1 bottle of sauce (strawberry or raspberry)

2 gelatin leaves


Please note that this recipe is to begin one day in advance!

First, have a pastry circle with high edges, a hotplate and a baking paper.

For the sponge cake: Mix 4 egg yolks with 125 g (4.5 oz) of sugar and whisk until the mixture whitens. Add flour and mix. Beat the egg whites until stiff and gently add them into the dough. Spread the dough evenly in a pastry circle, placed on a hotplate covered with baking paper. Bake at 220°C (428°F) (thermostat 7-8) until the dough is cooked (check with a knife). When the cake is cooked, slip on a flat plate, and remove the baking paper while leaving the pastry circle.

For the Bavarois:

Soften the 6 gelatin leaves in a bowl of water. Wash and trim strawberries. Mix them with the lemon juice and add 220 g (7.5 oz) of sugar. Pour this mixture into a saucepan and add the softened and drained gelatin sheets. Stir until they melt. Let cool. Whip the 40 cl (1.5 cup) of cream until thick (the cream must be very cold). When the strawberry mixture is cooled and begins to get solid, add the whipped cream. Pour the mixture over the cake in the pastry circle and refrigerate overnight. The next day: Pass the knife on the edge of the pastry circle to unmold.

For the topping:

Soften the 3 gelatin leaves in water. Heat the strawberry or raspberry sauce in a saucepan, add the gelatin and let cool slightly. Then pour it on the Bavarois. Put again in the fridge for a little while.

What is Bavarois? 

The bavarois is a cold and molded gelatin dessert that harkens to the ice cream bombes of the 17th and 18th centuries. Ice cream bombes were similar to ice cream cakes; they were often made in fancy molds and bavarois employs the same design feature. Bavarois were introduced in the early 19th century.

Bavarois is French for Bavarian cream, a light desert containing an English custard cream base. One version of the recipe involves aerating the English custard cream with whipped cream, egg whites and flavoring. Bavarois include fruit puree, chocolate, coffee or liqueur. The ingredients are mixed with gelatin and set to cool. It is said that the traditional bavarois does not include egg whites, but instead relies on extra whipping cream to add a fluffy texture. Bavarois is spooned into glasses or placed in a decorative mold and cooled again to give it a fancy design.

The texture of bavarois is like that of dessert mousse. Many dessert chefs use the same techniques to craft both items. A primary difference between mousse and bavarois is that white chocolate is sometimes an added ingredient instead of milk or dark chocolate

Master Chef Walter Potenza is the owner of Potenza Ristorante in Cranston, Chef Walters Cooking School and Chef Walters Fine Foods. 

His fields of expertise include Italian Regional Cooking, Historical Cooking from the Roman Empire to the Unification of Italy, Sephardic Jewish Italian Cooking, Terracotta Cooking, Diabetes and Celiac. Recipient of National and International accolades, awarded by the Italian Government as Ambassador of Italian Gastronomy in the World. Currently on ABC6 with Cooking Show “Eat Well."  Check out the Chef's website and blog.