Instead of actual cake layers this crepe cake consists of stacked French crepes filled with pastry creme filling and is topped with juicy strawberry sauce.
It’s the day before Valentine’s Day!
Are you excited? Annoyed?
I know, I know, there is a chance many of you don’t really care for Valentines Day. That being said, if anything, Valentine’s Day is a great excuse to eat sweets, right? Even is you hate Valentine’s Day, I think this is a point we can all agree on!
Here in South East Asia it seems to be not much of a big deal. Especially not this year, where it falls so close to the Chinese New Year. Which is a VERY big deal!
It also seems to differ from country to country. Last year in Thailand there were definitely pink, heart-shaped decorations in the big stores and there were many different kinds of Valentines products to buy.
In Malaysia – just one country South of Thailand – it is actually illegal! As we learnt from some friends and fellow travelers who are staying there at the moment. Thinking of the Christian background of the ‘holiday’ I guess it makes sense in a Muslim country.
This year, here in Vietnam, I don’t seem to notice anything Valentines related. Now, I don’t know if this is because the New Year’s celebrations are putting it into the shadow, or if it is generally not being observed this year.
By the way…wait. What? Vietnam?
Last week my husband and I traveled from Northern Thailand to Ho Chi Minh City (also known and still referred to as Saigon) in Vietnam. We’ll be located here for the next 3 months. Or, at least that’s the plan for now.
We’re excited to get to know another Southeast Asian country with its history and distinct cuisine. Some of the best and most exciting news is: I’ve already seen cakes at the bakery but have yet to try one. Just knowing they’re available is exciting!
So, for now I bring you a cake that we enjoyed back in Thailand – Crepe Cake. Instead of actual cake layers it has a whole lot of French crepes stacked on top of each other with a luscious pastry creme filling in between the layers.
It’s topped with strawberries as well as a fruity strawberry sauce.
This was my first-time having crepe cake. It is definitely different from actual cake. Not too sweet and also not fluffy. I loved taking apart the layers, bite by bite! While I appreciate the fluffiness of cake, I did enjoy the layers texture of the crepe cake, as well.
I found a great recipe for crepe cake by Lily from Lily’s Wai Sek Hong and added a recipe for strawberry sauce with it below. I love that this dessert also comes together without the use of an oven, which has me thinking I might try working on another crepe cake version soon.
Give it a try and share your results with me! Pictures are especially always welcome, too! Enjoy!
Crepe Cake with Strawberry Sauce
For the Pastry Creme Filling
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 4 + 2 tbsp granulated sugar divided
- 2 cups milk
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 4 tbsp + 4 cups heavy cream divided
For French Crepes
- 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 6 large eggs
- 3 tbsp melted butter
- 3 cups milk
For the Strawberry Sauce
- 20 oz. 570g fresh or frozen, unsweetened strawberries
- 8-12 extra strawberries for garnish
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- freshly squeezed lemon juice optional
Pastry Creme (has to be refrigerated, preferably overnight)
In a small bowl beat together eggs, flour, cornstarch and 4 tbsp sugar until smooth.
In a saucepan bring milk to a simmer (almost boiling). Remove from heat and whisk milk into egg mixture. Returning the mixture to the saucepan, cook for 5 minutes under constant stirring until mixture thickens and comes to a boil.
Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Set aside to cool. Once cooled, whip 4 tbsp of heavy cream and fold in. Refrigerate mixture until it thickens, preferably overnight.
Crepe Batter (can be prepared ahead and refrigerated)
In a large bowl whisk together flour, sugar and salt. Make a well into the flour mix and add eggs, melted butter and half of the milk.
Using a whisk or wooden spoon combine the ingredients while gradually adding the second half of the milk. Once all the milk is added keep beating/whisking until all lumps are removed. If need be, you may have to sieve the batter.
You can refrigerate the batter now but bring it back to room temperature before proceeding to cook the crepes.
Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Preheat a lightly oiled or non-stick pan over medium-low heat. Pour 1/4 cup batter into the pan and swirl it around to cover the entire surface. Cook until the bottom of the crepe is just lightly browned.
With your clean fingers carefully turn over the crepe and cook the other side for just 5 seconds (no more). Place crepe onto prepared lined baking sheet. Do NOT stack them on top of each other.
Repeat the process until you have 20 perfect crepe layers. You might have to practice with a few in the beginning.
If using frozen strawberries, place them in a large bowl to thaw - may take a few hours.
Reserving 8-12 whole berries for garnish, place fresh strawberries or thawed strawberries with their juice in food processor or blender. Process strawberries until they are pureed.
Pour sauce in 2 cup measuring glass. You should have about 1 1/4 cups sauce. Starting with 1/4 cup add sugar and stir to dissolve. If you like it sweeter add up to 1/3 cup of sugar in total.
Optionally add a little freshly squeezed lemon juice to taste. Sauce keeps for up to 1 week covered and refrigerated. Can also be frozen.
Take pastry creme out of the refrigerator and whip 4 cups of heavy cream with 2 tbsp sugar. Carefully fold whipped cream into pastry creme.
Using a cake board or round cake plate as a guide trim crepes with a sharp knife.
Place first crepe on a serving plate and spread 1/4-1/2 cup of pastry creme filling on top with a spatula or wide bladed knife.
Cover with another crepe and spread on pastry creme filling. Repeat for 20 crepe layers. Now spread the pastry creme over the top and the sides of the crepe cake.
Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. When you are ready to serve, cut the cake into slices. Place a reserved strawberry on a plated slice and pour 1-2 tbsp of strawberry sauce on top.