Oct 2010

Blackberry Cloud Cake

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Back in early July, I attempted to bake a New York cheesecake in celebration of The Astronomer’s 26th birthday. Everything was going swimmingly until I peeked into the oven and discovered that I had scorched the poor thing. Instead of a smooth and creamy surface with a golden graham crust, mine ballooned like a souffle and was caramelized in all the wrong places. Needless to say, my creation was chucked into the trash and my ego was bruised for some time. To add insult to injury, The Astronomer was left cake-less on his birthday.

It wasn’t until I encountered this Blackberry Cloud Cake recipe in last month’s Martha Stewart Living that I was finally inspired to bake a replacement. Scanning the list of ingredients and directions, I imagined a pastry similar to Jin Patiserrie’s “Spring Bouquet.” In actuality, this one was a completely different (and lighter) beast. Martha and company were right on the money when they compared its texture to that of clouds. The combination of fluffy whipped cream and soft meringue was truly lighter than air.

For birthday boys with a penchant for non-traditional cakes and a great love for berries, this recipe is just about perfect.

  • 3 containers (6 ounces each) blackberries (about 4 1/3 cups)
  • 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • Vegetable oil cooking spray, for parchment
  • 8 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups cold heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus more for dusting

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Toss 2 containers blackberries (about 3 cups) with 2 tablespoons granulated sugar; let stand for at least 2 hours, tossing occasionally, until berries release juices. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 10-by-15-inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment; coat with cooking spray. Whisk egg whites with a mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar. Raise speed to high, and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 5 minutes. Whisk in cornstarch, vinegar, and vanilla. Spread meringue evenly into sheet pan.

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Bake, rotating halfway through, until puffed and top is pale gold, 20 to 22 minutes. Let cool in sheet pan on a wire rack.

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Puree remaining container blackberries (about 1 1/3 cups) in a food processor, and strain through a fine sieve; discard solids.

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Whisk cream and confectioners’ sugar until soft peaks form. Add 1/3 cup puree, and whisk until stiff peaks form.

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Run a knife along edge of cake to release. Generously dust top with confectioners’ sugar, and top with another piece of parchment. Flip cake, and peel off original parchment. Working with shorter end of cake facing you, spread cream on cake, leaving a 1-inch border at bottom and a 2-inch border at top.

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Tightly roll cake into a 10-inch log, starting with bottom edge and using parchment as a guide. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Trim edges of cake, and slice.

Martha Stewart's Black Berry Cloud Cake

Serve topped with reserved berries.

Serves 8.

[For Printable Recipe Click Here]

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12 thoughts on “Blackberry Cloud Cake

  1. What an utterly perfect dessert. Well, you got me with the blackberries which I absolutely love yet rarely find in France but that cloud-like cake roll is amazing! A perfect mouthful and so elegant! Great recipe!

  2. Looks berry-licious! Makes my mouth water!
    Thanks for sharing! Now I know what to do when my mum gives me a box of raspberries from her garden!

  3. I think I’m in love. Damn, too bad you are off the market, Cathy! I love black/marionberries and whipped cream fluffy delights such as these. Might just have to whip up an Oregon style one with marionberries. Martha and I love you!

  4. Awww that poor cheesecake!

    Glad you made up with it with this killer dessert! My mom actually makes an ice cream roll cake that looks similar — it’s my favorite favorite favorite thing to have on a birthday. Will have to try this recipe some time as an alternative! Yum!

  5. I just made this delicious cake according to your instructions. I’ve never had such a delicious meringue in my whole life. The only thing I changed was that mine was a mixed berry, I had strawberries blueberries and blackberries on hand and it was delicious. I also used all of the puree instead of just 1/3 of a cup, it gave it a real berry punch! I reduced the amount of sugar a touch, and it’s seriously amazing. Perfect dessert for a baby shower! The only “hard” part was rolling, mine cracked just a little, but it gave it a really nice rustic look. Thank you for posting with such amazing pictures, you really helped me so much! Keep on posting!

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