I was recently invited to a masterclass with Eric Lanlard. I am a HUGE fan of Eric’s work and so I cannot tell you how excited I was!
The class was held at his new The Cafe at Cake Boy in Battersea. It’s a really cool place to hang out near the river with lovely, plush sofas that my girls settled into right away.
As the event had been organised by the lovely people at Neilsen Massey Vanilla, we were treated on arrival to some wonderful canapés. – sweet and savoury.
I started with some Gazpacho. The vanilla set the tomato off beautifully and this little shot glass was just the perfect portion.
Next I had a Smoked Salmon Sandwich. The salmon had been spread with a tiny bit of the Neilsen Massey Vanilla Paste and was really quite special.
But of course it was the desserts I was looking forward to. I started with a Crème Brulee…..
….and moved on to a White Chocolate Teardrop which was filled with a vanilla bavaroise and topped with a petit macron as you can see.
Next up was a Strawberry Mousse...
..followed by a Pistachio and Raspberry Mousse.
They were all utterly delightful!
Onto the Masterclass
For the masterclass Eric was going to show us how to make a Gateau Frasier. A traditional, French dessert of sponge cake, creme mousseline and strawberries topped with marzipan.
Of course he made it look so simple. He started off making a sponge. He prefers using two tins rather than baking one sponge and cutting it in half.
It was a pretty rich sponge mixture. Delicious but 5 eggs!
Next up he made some creme mousseline. This is basically a rich, thick custard whipped up with butter – yes butter! I had not tried this before but I really wanted to give it a go because the texture was velvety smooth and as a frosting, it really wasn’t too sweet. I must tell you that my first attempt at home was rather disastrous! My error was not ensuring that the custard and butter were at the same temperature when beating together and so I got a curdly looking mixture. It did rectify itself after cooling in the fridge but it was not as glossy as Eric’s.
He then basically laid the sponge base in a cake ring, placed cut strawberries around the edges in the middle, filled the gaps with creme mousseline and then put another sponge base on top of the those.
The whole thing was finished off with more creme mousseline and decorated with marzipan and chocolate.
I decided I wanted to have a go but I knew that it would be too big for my family. So I made these little Mini Gateaux using a biscuit cutter. I didn’t have time for the writing so I decorated with a little Amedei chocolate.
I must say that I was fascinated by the vanilla education he gave us. I’m going to do that more justice with a separate post as it’s such a fabulous botanical.
- For more information about Eric’s masterclasses, visit the Cake Boy website.
- Eric will also be at The Cake and Bake Show on 22-23 September 2012. (I have two free tickets to give away but you must enter by Friday 14th September 2012).
- Eric has kindly shared his recipe for Gateau Frasier and I’d encourage you to have a go. It’s delicious!
Thank you to Neilsen Massey, Eric Lanlard and the team at Cake Boy for inviting me to this wonderful masterclass. I had a brilliant time. Thank you also for the wonderful way you were with my girls and the cupcakes!
- Two Free Tickets to The Cake and Bake Show! (botanicalkitchen.wordpress.com)
- My Favourite Dish: Eric Lanlard on heirloom tomato tarte tatin (telegraph.co.uk)