Strawberry Tall Cake is amazingly delicious and completely gorgeous. Wait, what? Strawberry “tall” cake?
Yup! You see, a true strawberry “shortcake” is more like a biscuit than a cake.
What many folks call “Strawberry Shortcake” is a sponge cake layered with fresh strawberries and cream. The spongy cake absorbs lots of strawberry juice and it bakes up nice and “tall”.
So, want to know the secret ingredient that makes this cake extra delicious? Well, if you’ve read this blog before you might suspect that it involves a little alcohol.
Most strawberry shortcake recipes instruct you to toss the berries with a little sugar before assembling the cake. That’s a great idea.
Sugar not only draws out the juices from the berries, making a delicious syrup, the berries take in some of the sugar. What you end up with is a lovely mixture of softened and slightly sweetened berries with strawberry syrup that soaks into the cake.
The secret to extra flavorful Strawberry Tall Cake filling is….
I add a wee drop of Grand Marnier to the strawberries and sugar. The Grand Marnier adds a little more sugar and another layer of flavor that enhances, but doesn’t overpower, the strawberry flavor.
Once again I’m going to remind you that alcohol enhances other flavors in a dish in a very particular way. You can read more about the science behind why this is true in this post.
If you don’t do alcohol, use a splash of orange juice. It won’t be exactly the same, but the juice will spark the flavor of the berries.
Now, lets talk about the cake component of this lovely dessert.
The base for my Strawberry Tall Cake is a Vanilla Chiffon Cake. So you could also call this a Strawberry Chiffon Cake or a Strawberry Sponge cake.
I think “chiffon” is a great word. Not only is it a pretty sounding word, it also conjures up images of softness, airiness and luxury, like the namesake fabric.
Those are all lovely traits for a cake, no? Who doesn’t want a cake that is soft, airy and luxurious?
Why is Chiffon Cake the best base for Strawberry Tall Cake?
Because a chiffon cake is a type of sponge cake, the soft, spongy cake will absorb lots of delicious strawberry juice. The light cake is also pairs perfectly with airy whipped-cream filling.
You could eat this cake as soon as it’s assembled, but at least an hour in the fridge will give the juice some time to soak into the cake.
I like to let the cake stay at least 5-6 hours in the refrigerator before serving. If you’re serving this cake after dinner it can be assembled either early in the day or even the night before. Just keep the sides of the cake well-wrapped to prevent it from drying out.
Watch the recipe video to see how to make Strawberry Tall Cake.
Want another amazing way to enjoy strawberries? This super-easy and incredibly delicious Fresh Strawberry Pie with Rose Wine Glaze should be right up your alley. You’ll also love Strawberry Shortcake, Strawberry Macarons, Strawberry Mousse Cake, Strawberry Panna Cotta, Chocolate Strawberry Tart, Fresh Strawberry Mousse.
Strawberry Tall Cake Recipe
- 1 recipe Vanilla Chiffon Cake (baked in two 8"x3" pans)
- 1 ½ pounds ripe strawberries
- 6 oz granulated sugar (¾ cup, divided)
- 2 tablespoons Grand Marnier liquor ( or orange juice)
- 16 oz heavy Cream (2 cups)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Reserve 6 good looking berries of equal size. Stem and slice 1 ½ pounds ripe strawberries and place them in a large bowl, toss in ½ cup of the granulated sugar and 2 tablespoons Grand Marnier liquor. Set aside for at least 30 minutes, 60 minutes is even better.
- Whip 16 oz heavy Cream with the remaining sugar and 1 tablespoon vanilla extract. Use a serrated knife to slice the top from each cake to make it level. Cut each cake in half horizontally (torte) so you have a total of 4 layers of cake.
- Place one layer on a serving platter and spoon 1/3 of the sliced strawberries and some juice onto the layer. Spread the berries out so they’re level. Spread 1/4 of the cream over the berries, pushing the cream down in between the berries. Repeat with the next two layers. Reserve some of the strawberry juice for the top layer. Drizzle the remaining juice over the last layer. Frost the top of the cake with the remaining cream. You can reserve a ½ cup for decorating if you have a piping bag. Fit the bag with a star tip, pipe 12 rosettes around the top of the cake.
- Slice the reserved berries in ½ and place a berry half, seed side up, on each rosette. If you don’t have a piping bag just place the berries around the top of the cake decoratively. Wrap the sides of the cake so it doesn’t dry out and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving to allow the juices to absorb into the cake. I like the cake best after 5-6 hours in the refrigerator.
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