A stunning dairy dessert for the holiday

A Shavuot-appropriate recipe from the head pastry chef of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Jerusalem.

Red velvet cake (photo credit: Courtesy)
Red velvet cake
(photo credit: Courtesy)
In honor of Shavuot, Claude Bensimon, head pastry chef at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Jerusalem, reveals his unique twist on one of the world’s most famous cakes and a Waldorf specialty – Red Velvet.
“This cake requires patience and skill but is well worth the effort because it is visually breathtaking and combines the tastes and sensations of the very best pastries,” he says. “Take the time to prepare this cream-cheese-filled cake and invest in the necessary ingredients, and the result will be a Shavuot delicacy that will have made all the effort worthwhile.”
While the recipe can be adapted for the American kitchen, Bensimon believes that precision is critical and advises using the metric measurements as closely as possible.
For the cake
300 gr. eggs (6 large eggs)
375 gr. raspberry syrup
500 gr. sugar
400 gr. flour
15 gr. baking powder
300 gr. oil
Rosewater Red food coloring
For the cream cheese frosting
500 gr. pastry cream
425 gr. Napoleon cream cheese, 30%
150 gr. powdered sugar
140 gr. gelatin
525 gr. whipped cream
2 vanilla beans
To prepare the cake: Whip together the sugar and eggs. With a spatula, fold in the raspberry syrup and add in the baking powder and oil.
Transfer to a 30-cm. baking tray or cupcake molds, greased with parchment paper, and bake at 170° for 30 to 40 minutes.
Let cool.
To prepare the frosting: Put ²⁄3 of the pastry cream in a mixer with the cream cheese and powdered sugar. In a pot, heat ¹⁄3 of the pastry cream and add the gelatin while hot. Slowly add the mixture to the mixer bowl with the other ingredients.
Mix. Fold in the whipped cream.
To arrange the cake: After the cake cools, slice it in half (on the width). Use ¹⁄3 of the frosting to cover half of the cake.
Place the other half of the cake on top of the frosting. Refrigerate for half an hour. Frost the cake with the rest of the frosting and return it to the refrigerator.
Decorate with wild berries and strawberries or with a chocolate plaque and edible flower.