Matcha raspberry cake
This HM Conscious Exclusive inspired set of dishes started with this cake. I saw the green, organic silk dress I was planning to wear to my book launch. I fell in love immediately. The silky texture, the finesse, the fragile feel of the fabric. And the color. I knew I wanted to make matcha cake, because we love matcha, our whole family loves matcha.
I was making the sponge, inspired by Italian sponge, and Emily said, “Your cakes get better every day, and you make them so good.” While the sponge was in the oven, they both walked around sniffing the air like mad. Then I made the cream – the aroma of boiling raspberries filled the house, alternating with the smell of whipped glossy egg cream. Step by step, the cake came together. There was just one thing I needed before the photo session – flowers – and thank god I have my friend Ieva, who brought them to me from the garden. I took pictures and said, “It’s done! Let’s cut the cake and eat.” And then, when I cut it, there were these fantastic layers of everything I made. Beautiful. The same as the dress that inspired me.
8 eggs, room temperature
200 g light brown sugar
pinch of salt
180 g wheat cake flour
80 g almond flour
1 tsp baking powder
15 g matcha
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1 organic lemon zest, finely grated
160 g melted, cooled to room temperature
for raspberry jam:
330 g thawed raspberries
50 g golden caster sugar
pinch of sea salt
1/2 zest of organic lemon, finely grated
for the cream:
4 egg whites
150 g golden brown sugar
pinch of sea salt
1/5 tsp vanilla powder
250 g butter, room temperature
1 zest of an organic lemon, finely grated
150 g thawed (liquid squeezed out) grated raspberries
1 tbsp matcha powder
Preheat the oven to 180°. Butter and flour (or line with baking paper) 4 x 20 cm cake pans.
Put the eggs, sugar, and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer. Beat the eggs on medium speed about 15-20 minutes until very fluffy and pale yellow.
Meanwhile, mix flour with matcha, almond flour, lemon zest, vanilla and baking powder. When the eggs are ready, sift in the flour and mix gently. When it is almost mixed, pour in the butter and still mixing gently, make a smooth batter. Pour into the pans, level, and put into the oven to bake for 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Remove the sponge cake from the oven, let it cool for 10 minutes, then loosen the edges with a knife, and flip it on a wire rack upside down (without the pan) to cool completely.
Make the raspberry jam. Put all the ingredients into a pan and boil for 15 minutes on medium high heat until it starts to thicken. Take off the heat and cool completely. This can be made 3-4 days ahead (cool and keep in the fridge).
Make the cream only when you are ready to assemble the cake. Blend raspberries until they are like sauce. Mash though a fine sieve.
Fill a wide pot with at least 8 cm of water. Boil. Combine egg whites, sugar, salt, lemon zest and vanilla powder in the bowl of a stand mixer you will use later. Place the bowl over the hot water, stirring and scraping constantly with a hand whisk, until the egg whites reach 85°C. Once ready, transfer to a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and whip at high speed about 10 minutes until the meringue is glossy, stiff, and cool to the touch (around 32°C). I like to put my hand on the bowl and if it is barely warm, it is ready.
With the mixer still running, add butter, 2 tablespoons at a time. At first, the volume of the meringue will decrease – it may even seem soupy along the way. But as the cool butter is added, the mixture will begin to thicken and cool. In the end, the butter cream should be thick, creamy, and soft, but not runny. If it starts to curdle, put the bowl on a pot of simmering water, heat a bit and continue whisking (it will go back to normal). If it gets too warm, refrigerate for 10-15 minutes and whisk again. Divide the cream into 2/3 and 1/3. Add matcha to the 1/3 and sieved raspberries (lightly whisking in) to the 2/3.
Layer the cake. Place the first sponge on a plate. Pipe some cream around the edges (1 cm thick to prevent anything leaking out). Divide raspberry jam into three parts and spread one part on this layer. Put some raspberry cream on top. Place the second sponge and repeat. On the top layer, spread some matcha cream on and around (just a bit, so that you can cover the cake, like making a naked cake). When the cake is covered, the cream has “glued” all of the crumbs, and now you can spread all of the matcha cream over the cake. Put in the fridge for 12 hours. Take out 1-2 h before serving (I do it when the party starts and I know there is plenty of time). Decorate and serve.
Picture of me: Natalie Berezina
Recipe and pictures: Signe Meirane
Camera: Sony Alpha 7s