Vacherin glacés are a delight… amazingly delicious and simple. My last one had more complex piping so I wanted to show you this very approachable and friendly one with shop-bought raspberry sorbet and Häagen-Dazs salted caramel ice-cream. My 12-year old niece and I very quickly and easily assembled the homemade meringue discs to sandwich the ices, finally covering with vanilla chantilly whipped cream. Made as a belated ice-cream birthday cake for both my brother and sister-in-law, we were ‘casually careful’ and had fun with the decor of fresh raspberries, meringue kisses, caramel fudge pieces, silver balls and physalis flowers. No need for absolute perfection because this cake was made with love, absolutely delicious and highly appreciated just as it was. 🙂
The cake was delish and polished off in 15 minutes. Everyone had a second slice. Everyone was happy. Yay!
And I was very proud of Eloise my niece and her impressive cake-making skills. She piped and used that offset spatula really well.
I wasn’t going to post this vacherin but it’s so easy to assemble and eat, you might want to make it yourself! You can use any flavour ice-cream or sorbet you desire. It’s easiest to use a cake ring (look for cake ring 22x6cm lacor on Amazon, any good make will do). You almost don’t need a recipe, but here it is just in case. Oh and stick around for tales of my baking in Sicily and the August cake collection down below…
THE RECIPE – for a 22cm diametre x 6cm high cake
Make the meringue discs and kisses the day before and store at room temperature in baking paper then aluminium foil, or an airtight tin. Or make the same day 3 or 4 hours before so they cool completely before assembly. Buy the ice-cream and sorbet flavours of your choice. I’d recommend one be a sharp acidic sorbet like raspberry or lemon (maybe pineapple) to balance the sweetness of the meringue.
Meringue discs and kisses (not the fingers in the photo)
Follow the recipe below. You can hand whisk the meringue with will power, a good arm and 20 to 30 minutes to make sure the whites are nicely stiff before folding in the icing sugar. Or buy meringues from a shop and crush to make layers with them… tee hee.
- 138-144g egg whites from about 3 and a half medium-large free-range eggs
- 126g/half cup plus 3 teaspoons caster/superfine sugar
- 126g/1 cup icing/powdered sugar
- quarter teaspoon pure vanilla extract (add after the caster sugar is incorporated and before whisking a further 5 minutes)
Pipe two 22cm/8.6in diametre meringue discs (you can draw circles with pen on the baking paper then turn the paper around before piping so you don’t get pen marks on the meringue). Pipe meringue kisses around the edges with any leftover mixture.
- 360g/12.5oz salted caramel ice-cream
- 360g/12.5oz raspberry sorbet
- 2 meringue discs
- decorative elements like meringue kisses, fresh raspberries (or freeze-dried), physalis fruit, caramel fudge pieces, silver balls…
- 300ml whipping cream (less than in my original Ispahan vacherin as my brother and sister-in-law aren’t big cream fans), 35 to 45g/2 and a half to 3 and a half tablespoons caster/superfine sugar (to taste) and a scant 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Place the first meringue discs in the cake ring, as the bottom layer.
- Put spoon-sized blobs of raspberry sorbet (that has softened a little at room temperature) all over the meringue then use the back of a metal tablespoon to spread the raspberry sorbet to an even layer. Don’t press down too hard. Freeze 20 minutes or more so it all hardens.
- Repeat with the layer of salted caramel ice-cream on top.
- Cover with the second meringue disc (placed upside-down so the top of your cake is flat).
- Freeze 2 to 4 hours until firm (less if you’re in a rush and don’t mind imperfection, like us this time)
- Use a blowtorch to heat all around the cake ring until you can remove it by lifting it up and off the cake. You can also warm with your hands or use a hair dryer apparently!
- Put the cake back in the freezer while you prepare the cream. Whisk the cream to very soft peak then gradually whisk in the caster sugar then add the vanilla essence. Whisk to stiff peak and be careful not to overwork or it will turn to butter. Oops.
- Cover the top and sides with a thin layer of cream. Smooth with the offset spatula. Pipe some stars with a star nozzle around the top if you like.
- Use any decorations you like to prettify your cake. It’s nice if some of your decor reflects what’s inside the cake.
- Place in the freezer for 30 minutes or longer. Serve from the freezer (you can store it in there up to 4 weeks but it’s better if eaten within 2 weeks). Once out you can wait 15 to 30 minutes for it to soften a little or just eat it immediately!
For more details or photos see my Ispahan vacherin. Here’s another vacherin I made in August with homemade passionfruit and raspberry sorbet. I love them all.
August was a good month for ice-cream cakes, a mojito fruitcake to take climbing (would you like the recipe?), yummy pesto spelt mini muffins and delightful Earl Grey tea melting moment biscuits (recipes for the last two are on the blog).
And there was some baking involving ricotta…
Making cakes in Sicily
A friend asked if I was interested in a short 5-day holiday in Sicily. Right at the bottom of Italy at the toe, Sicily has a fine reputation for cuisine, climbing and scenery. I said yes and promptly booked myself on a 1-day baking course at uncoveredsicily.com to make typical Sicilian pastries. Giana my lovely teacher and I sweated away working hard in her mother’s kitchen for over 6 hours to make cannoli, cassatine and gelo di mellone. It was amazing. You can see us glowing in the photos below with some of the cakes we produced.
I’ll practice them at home before posting any recipes on the blog. I was going to make cannoli in London with mum but forgot my notes at home in Barcelona. So I thought I’d fill the puff pastry horns I’d brought over (as you do when visiting relatives), with cannoli and cream filling! Tada! Hybrid cannoli cream horns. Delicious!
They need tweaking as they work perfectly well with my homemade inverted puff (see above) but not so well with shop-bought all-butter puff (see below). Darn. Two or three of them collapsed in the oven. Yes, disaster is only a short step away when baking. Humbling and also kind of funny.
Anyway, will keep working to improve. And researching cakes. If you have some spare surfing time and enjoy drooling have a look at my facebook page (link way down, in the black footer) to check out the recent photo album ‘cake-testing in Paris’.
In the meantime make a wish.. maybe wish for a vacherin glacé! 🙂
And here it is for you.
Have a lovely week sweet reader! Stay frosty and cool with some happy baking and eating. 🙂 Lili x