It’s officially summer! And it’s crazy hot and humid here in Houston, Texas. Thankfully I have a refreshing and light (well lighter) dessert for your summertime indulgence with this Mixed Berry Sponge Cake!
I love baking simple cakes like this from time to time. Four layers of sponge cake, which are soaked in a soaking syrup, then filled with a mascarpone whipped cream, and then topped with fresh summer berries!
Cherries are in season right now so I jumped on the chance to incorporate them in this Mixed Berry Sponge Cake. If you are going to use them in the filling be sure to pit the cherries before. I left a few cherries intact for the garnish.
What I love about this cake is that it doesn’t have to be perfect. It’s rustic but dramatic all at the same time.
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Adapted from Layered by Tessa Huff
Mixed Berry Sponge Cake
Four layers of sponge cake, brushed with a soaking syrup, filled with whipped cream and fresh berries.
- 2 8-inch round cake pans
- Stand mixer
- Hand mixer
- 2 cups cake flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon table salt
- ½ cup grapeseed oil
- 1 ¼ cups plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 6 large egg yolks, at room temperature (reserve egg whites for later use in the recipe)
- ½ cup whole milk, at room temperature
- 8 large egg whites, at room temperature (use reserved egg whites)
- ¾ teaspoon cream of tartar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- 8 ounces mascarpone cheese, softened
- 2 cups heavy cream, chilled
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 pounds fresh assorted berries such as, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, chopped strawberries and pitted fresh cherries
- Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Spray two 8-inch cake pans with non-stick baking spray and set aside.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the oil and 1 ¼ cups sugar together on medium speed for 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Reduce the speed to medium-low and add the vanilla and egg yolks, one at a time and mix for about 3 minutes or until the mixture has increased in volume and has turned pale in color. Scrape down the sides of the mixer bowl as necessary.
- Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk in 2 batches, starting with the flour mixture and ending with the flour mixture. Turn the mixer speed up to medium and beat for 30 seconds until the dry ingredients are combined.
- In a large bowl with a hand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites on medium-low speed until foamy. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar and cream of tartar and whisk on high speed until stiff peaks form.
- Carefully fold in the egg whites into the batter and divide batter evenly among the prepared cake pans. Bake for 25 to 28 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs. Let the cakes cool on a wire rack in their pans for about 10 to 15 minutes. Then invert on the cooling racks to cool completely.
- Combine the sugar and water together in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar, then add the vanilla extract and stir combine. Remove from the heat and set aside until needed.
WHIPPED CREAM FILLING
- In a small bowl, stir the softened mascarpone cheese for one minute until creamy. In a bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment attached, whisk the chilled heavy cream, sugar and vanilla until stiff peaks form, about 2 or 3 minutes. Add the mascarpone cheese and whisk again for 1 minute to stiff peaks.
- Once the cakes have cooled, carefully halve them horizontally, creating 4 even layers of cake. Place one of the cake layers on a cake pedestal. Using a wooden skewer, poke holes in the first layer of cake with a wooden skewer; then brush on some of the Soaking Syrup with a pastry brush.
- Spread about 1 cup of the Whipped Cream Filling on top. Spread about 1 cup of berries on top. Repeat this process with the remaining cake layers. Garnish the last layer of cake with remaining Whipped Cream Filling and garnish with remaining berries.
MAKE AHEAD: Unfrosted cake can be stored wrapped in plastic wrap, in an air tight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
STORE: This cake is best eaten the day it is made but you can store in the refrigerator in an air tight container for up to 1 day.
*Nutrition information is an estimate and will vary.*
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 887Total Fat: 52gSaturated Fat: 24gCholesterol: 246mgSodium: 462mgCarbohydrates: 95gFiber: 1gSugar: 68gProtein: 12g