Whenever I make a gâteau I remember just how easy they are. Yes they do take skill, and much precision, but the skills are quickly mastered – with a steady hand. Flavour choice counts for a lot too as the sponge and cream are oh so delicate balance must be maintained. My favourite thing about this gâteau is the added texture (not to mention flavour) the chopped peach adds to the filling, truly delicious!
Peach & Jasmine Gâteau
for the genoese sponge
- 2 medium eggs
- 60g caster sugar
- 60g plain flour
for the peach jelly
- 240g peaches, peeled and stoned if fresh or drained if tinned (this is the weight of the flesh)
- 20g caster sugar, or to taste (depending on the ripeness of the peaches)
- 1 tablespoon powdered gelatine
for the jasmine syrup
- 1½ teaspoons loose leaf jasmine tea
- 100g caster sugar
for the filling
- 150g peaches, peeled and stoned if fresh or drained if tinned (this is the weight of the flesh)
- 300ml double cream
- 30g icing sugar, sifted
Make the sponge: preheat the oven to 190°C (180°C fan)/375°F/gas mark 5, grease a 20cm round loose-bottomed or spring-form cake tin and line the base with non-stick baking paper. Place the eggs and sugar in the bowl of a freestanding electric mixer and whisk on high speed (or alternatively in a large bowl with a hand held electric mixer) for 4-5 minutes until very thick and pale (it should hold its shape), and leaves a thick trail (or ribbon) when the beater is lifted. Sift the flour over the mixture then carefully fold in using a spatula or large metal spoon.
Transfer to the prepared tin, carefully level the surface and bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes until risen, golden brown and springy to the touch (it will be more delicate than a standard sponge). Leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes before running a knife around the outside of the cake to release it then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. As it cools the cake will shrink slightly.
Make the peach jelly: lightly oil a baking tray and line with cling film, smoothing out any creases (the oil will help with this). Lightly oil the inside of a 20cm cake ring, place on the prepared baking tray then peel up the cling film from around the outside of the ring and stick to edge of the ring (this will make it watertight). Place the peaches in a food processor with the sugar and blitz until as smooth as possible. Set to one side.
Measure 75ml freshly boiled water in a heatproof jug and sprinkle the gelatine over. Mix the gelatine into the water until dissolved (if the gelatine fails to dissolve, stand the jug in a pan of hot water stirring until the mixture becomes clear), then stir into the peach puree, mixing well. Pour the mixture into the prepared ring, spreading evenly, cover the ring with more cling film and chill for at least two hours. Once set, remove the ring and clean for the assembly. Cover the jelly with more cling film and leave in the fridge.
Make the jasmine syrup: place the tea in a heatproof jug and pour over 100ml freshly boiled water. Leave to brew for 3 minutes. Strain the tea into a small saucepan and add the sugar. Stir over a gentle heat to dissolve the sugar, then remove from the heat and leave to cool.
Assemble the gateau: finely chop the peaches, to approximately 5mm pieces. Whip the cream with the sugar to soft peaks then fold in the chopped peach. Spoon into a large piping bag and place in the fridge.
Place the cake ring on a large serving dish. Trim the sides of the sponge so there is a 1cm rim around it when placed inside the cake ring. Trim the top then cut horizontally into 2 even layers. Place one of the sponge layers centrally in the ring and brush liberally with the cooled jasmine syrup. Cut the tip off the piping bag to make a 1cm hole, then pipe the cream into the gap around the sponge. Pipe a thin layer of cream on top of the sponge (about half of the contents of the piping bag) then place the second layer of sponge on top. Press down well then brush with more syrup and pipe more cream as before. Level the surface with an angled palette knife then place the gâteau in the fridge to set for at least 30 minutes.
Before serving, gently warm the ring with a blowtorch then carefully remove. Peel the cling film from the jelly and position centrally on top of the gateau. Serve.