Raspberry Orange Crepe Cake

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I’ve subscribed to and canceled, many different food magazines over the years, but Canadian Living has been faithfully arriving in my mailbox for my 35 years of married life.  While I admired the beautiful cover photo of last month’s stacked crepe cake, I immediately dismissed it as being “too fussy.”  However, a brave friend lacking my fear of fancy desserts shared a delicious slice of her success with me, and I was so inspired by the lovely taste and texture that I decided to tackle it myself.  I feared a lopsided “Pinterest fail” in trying to recreate it, but the “oohs and aahs” of the people in the office as I brought it in for photos was proof that I had a winner on my hands!  There were definitely a few people lurking around the office while the photos were happening, eagerly anticipating a taste once the camera was put away.      

If you’re someone who loves to cook breakfast but the thought of baking and decorating fancy cakes sends shivers of fear up your spine, then this layer of crepes smothered in whipping cream/mascarpone/raspberry deliciousness is the perfect recipe for you! No baking of multiple layers of cake required.  It takes a bit of time to cook the crepes, but once you’ve made them the rest is easy to assemble.  The beauty of this recipe is that it doesn’t matter if some of the crepes aren’t perfect or have holes in them as the filling covers up all the mistakes!  I’ll admit that I even took a scissor to trim a few of the edges that weren’t perfectly round and I dare anyone to tell me the photo doesn’t look delicious.   Be prepared to accept all the compliments that are sure to come your way as you share this beautiful dessert at your family table.  

Ingredients

Crêpes:

2 1/4 cups warm milk

2 cups all-purpose flour

6 eggs

6 tablespoons butter, melted

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup vegetable oil

Mascarpone Cream:

2 1/2 cups whipping cream (35%)

1 1/4 cup mascarpone cheese, 275 gm container  

5 tablespoons liquid honey

1 tablespoon vanilla

1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate

2 cups raspberries

Method

Crêpes:

In a blender, purée together milk, flour, eggs, butter, sugar, and salt until smooth. Strain through fine-mesh sieve into a bowl; cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Heat a nonstick skillet or crêpe pan over medium heat; brush lightly with oil. I used a frying pan labeled as a “9 ½ inch” pan, which made the crêpes you see in the photo.  An 8-inch pan makes smaller crepes and will give you more layers for a taller cake.  Pour scant 1/4 cup of the batter into the pan, swirling to coat; pour excess back into the bowl. Cook, turning once, until golden, about 1 1/2 minutes. Layer between parchment paper. Repeat with remaining batter. You should have 20-30 crêpes, depending on the size of pan you used.   (Make-ahead: Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 24 hours or freeze in airtight container for up to 1 month. Defrost before continuing with recipe.)

Mascarpone Cream:

In a large bowl, beat together cream, mascarpone, and honey until stiff peaks form; beat in vanilla, orange juice concentrate and 1 cup of the raspberries until evenly distributed. Remove 1/4 cup to small bowl; set aside.

Assembly: 

Set aside a perfect crêpe for the top layer, as well as a ¼ cup of topping for garnish.  Place one crêpe on a cake plate. Spread with a thin layer of cream mixture, using an offset spatula to spread cream to edges of crepe evenly.  You’ll need approximately ¼ cup per layer for 20 layers, adjust the amount of filling per layer accordingly to how many crêpes you want to use.  Repeat layering with remaining crêpes and cream mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until set, about 2 hours. Just before serving, spread reserved cream mixture in the middle of top of cake. Mound remaining raspberries over the top. Dust with icing sugar, if you wish.