I guess Buckwheat & Cranberry Gateau is something like a signature cake of the area I come from. It is not easy to get hold of anything buckwheat in the UK, unless you happen to live near some Eastern European shops, which I do! I am quite crazy about buckwheat, because of its strange nutty taste. But that may just be bred into me ;) Anyway, I don’t normally spend my nights making gateaux (they are such a mess to handle on public transport or bicycles…), but a few weeks ago I turned 30 and thought it was about time I tried making one! I found out that they are actually quite easy to make and as I still have lots of flour left over, I keep on producing new ones for various occasions… Of course, there are other things I will eventually do with the remaining buckwheat. Images of pancakes, porridge, bread, biscuits, fruit & grain salad come to my mind. Or just more gateau variations (there is a nice one from Austria, but try getting rosehip puree in the UK!)! ;) At this point you may have noticed: making gateaux instantly gives you an aura of decadence (‘let them eat cake’)!
If you want to immerse yourself in this decadent wrongness and try recreating this creamy gem – here is the recipe:
For the sponge:
150 g sugar
Vanilla sugar or flavouring
150 g buckwheat flour (you can also add ground hazelnuts)
Baking powder (amount for a sponge cake)
Filling and topping:
About 1 ½ glasses of cranberry sauce (with as much fruit content as possible – I use the one from Aldi or Lidl) and
About 1 ½ pots of whipping cream
Optional: chocolate decoration
Separate eggs and beat the egg white first. Beat the egg yolk with about two thirds of the sugar until it’s fluffy. I’ve learned to beat it over a pot of boiling water, but it should be fine if you do it the normal way. Add the rest of the sugar, the vanilla flavouring, and egg yolk mix to the beaten egg whites. Mix the buckwheat flour with the baking powder and stir in as well. Fill everything into a round or square cake tin (preferably with some parchment as the sponge is extremely sticky!) and bake approx. 30 mins at
180°C/ Gas Mark 4.
Leave to cool and peel off the baking parchment. I usually bake the cake the day or night before, casually assuming that it improves the flavour ;) But you can fill it as soon as it’s properly cooled down.
Next, you cut the cake into 3 layers. You can just do that with a knife, or, if you are geeky enough, you make a small incision all around where you want the layer to be and then use a thread which you cross over and pull through. Once you have somehow achieved in cutting the thing apart, you can now fill it with spoonfuls of cranberry sauce and a few dollops of whipped cream. After you have successfully filled the cake you can now cover it (as evenly as you wish) with whipped cream and decorate it with cranberries and chocolate sprinkle or shavings to your heart’s delight.