A bavarois is a dessert made with a fruit coulis and cream. The binding element is gelatin. Gelatin is an animal, often pork, by-product. I do not use gelatin in any of my desserts, be it Panna Cotta, bavarois rubanés, charlotte etc. I use only agar-agar which is a sea weed by-product. It is one of the few product which I do not get locally, in Kenya, but in France.
Agar-agar and gelatin have different properties. When I first used agar-agar it was a problem, the end result was too thin or too thick. Now, I easily handle agar-agar, it is much better than gelatin since it does not have taste, odor nor does it melt.
I have always considered making desserts or pastries like chemistry. So, until you feel comfortable with agar-agar I suggest that you follow my direction to make this dessert.
Making the cake requires 4 stages – the cake base, the fruit coulis, the bavarois mousse and the coulis glaze. It seems a lot but it is very fast and easy to make.
- 2 eggs, separated
- 50 gr flour, sifted
- 75 gr sugar
- 500 gr of fresh strawberries
- 100 gr of icing sugar
- Squeeze of ½ of lime
- 400 ml of whipping cream
- 4 gr agar-agar
- 4 tbsps. of water
Agar-agar strawberry glaze
- 200 gr of fresh strawberries
- 2 tbsps. of icing sugar
- A small squeeze of lime
- 2 tbsps. of water
- 2 gr agar-agar
Making the cake base
- Place a grease proof paper at the base of a cake baking pan or on a baking sheet. Heat up the oven to 180 Celsius
- With a whisk mix the egg yolks and the sugar to reach a pale and smooth consistency
- Add sifted flour and mix again until absorbed. I repeat, sifted flour
- Whip the eggs white to a stiff pick
- Fold the egg white into the egg yolk mixture
- Spread the mixture at the bottom of your cake pan or spread it nicely on your baking sheet
- Cook for 12 to a maximum of 15 minutes. Let it cool. Set the base into a mold until ready to use
Making the strawberry coulis
- Clean the 500 gr of strawberries and put them in a food processor or mixer
- Process into a fine puree, add the juice of ½ a lime juice, the 100 gr of icing sugar and mix again
- Pass the strawberry purée through a fine strainer to remove the seeds
Making the strawberry mousse with agar-agar
- Put 4 tbsps. of water in a small pot, add 4 gr of agar-agar and half of the strawberry purée (coulis) and cook to the boiling point. Let the mixture boil for 2 minutes. The mixture will thicken. This stage is very important, to activate its gelling property, agar-agar needs to be dissolved in water and heated up to a temperature of 32 to 43 Celsius for at least for 1 minute
- Add the rest of the strawberry coulis, mix well and let it cool for 5 minutes
- Whisk the heavy cream to a Chantilly and delicately fold it into the strawberry coulis
- Pour the mixture in the mold and put it in the refrigerator
Making the strawberry glaze with agar-agar
- Make a strawberry coulis as shown above with the 200 gr of strawberries, 2 tbsps. of icing sugar and a few drops of lime.
- Put 2 tbsps. of water in a pot add 2 gr of agar agar and the coulis and let it boil for 2 minutes until the mixture thickens. You must work fairly fast since the mixture will thickens rapidly
- Pour it on top of your strawberry mousse
- Decorate to your taste. I used strawberry slices and crumbles of ginger snaps. Unmold delicately.