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Let Them Eat Cake (With Fruit)

Wed Jul 21

Let them eat cake.

Fun Fact. There’s no actual evidence to show that these words (or the original “Qu’ils mangent de la brioche”) were ever actually uttered by the ill-fated French queen they are usually attributed to. That said, we’re not using it here not to debate its historical accuracy or significance (although if you’re interested, try out this podcast). 

So why are we kicking off with them? Well because, quite frankly, we really wish that someone would use them in reference to us. Preferably while holding a large cake that they have every intention of giving to us.

Admittedly, we have something of an insatiable sweet tooth and an inexplicable desire for cake on a Monday afternoon. For once, though, our daydreaming about how wonderful a cake fresh out of the oven would be (again, an insatiable sweet tooth) led to something productive. 

Here at the Fresh Bite, we love to give you ideas for fun ways to eat fresh fruits and veggies. Fruit and cake go hand in hand, so why not combine something we love with something we love? We decided to look into all the ways fruit can be used to add flavor and pizazz to even the simplest of cake recipes.

Here are our favorites

To decorate the cake

Fruit in between

Let’s start with how you can use fruit to decorate your favorite cake. As it turns out, you can make even the simplest of recipes appealing to the eye.

For starters, layer cake. On the off chance that you’re a fan of Netflix’s Nailed It, you probably know that if you are going to be stacking cakes, it’s a good idea to put something between them. Some like to use buttercream or dulce de leche (or both) Here we’re going to be looking at fruit and jam.

Before you do anything else, make sure you get your cakes ready for stacking. Make sure they’re cooled and trim the tops so they’ll all lie flat on top of each other. Then put the first on a plate (or whatever you’re planning on serving it on) you can use icing to “glue it in place).

Now for the stacking. If you want to put jam between your layers, it’s a good idea to first outline the cake with a ring of frosting (called a dam) before putting the jam in the middle. This will prevent it from leaking out the sides.

As for fresh fruit, you can spread out a layer of icing and top that with thinly sliced fruit (berries are a popular choice). Start with a dollop of whatever icing or cream you’re using in the middle and spread it out to the edges. Then lay an even layer of fruit. 

Whichever of the two methods suits your fancy, make sure that the next layer of cake can lie flatly on top. When you’ve stacked your last cake, you can ice the outside. Here are instructions for that.

Fruit on top

Don’t think you’re done with fruit once the stacking is finished. Fresh fruit can also make excellent toppers.

Once your cake is frosted, arrange sliced (or whole if you’re using something like berries) on top. You can keep it fresh and nice-looking by coating it with a simple glaze or heated preserves.

Fruit Baked in

In addition to being a great decorator, you can also bake fruit into your cake to help add flavor and give it a moist texture. One example is the upside-down cake.

Upside-down cakes are made by lining the base of the pan with sliced fruit and pouring the batter in on top. Once the cake is baked, it’s flipped and removed from the pan so that the fruit is visible on top. Hence the name upside-down cake.

You’re probably familiar with the classic pineapple and maraschino take, but there is a plethora of different fruits that can be used. Apples, pears, and strawberries are just a few examples.

Conversely, if you feel your flipping game is not up to snuff, you can also just add some fruit to your cake batter. Coating them with flour beforehand is a handy trick that will keep them from sinking to the bottom of your cake. Also, be sure to slice your fruit into small pieces.