Dressing up and plating a stawberry shortcake

Discussion in 'Pastries & Baking' started by momoreg, Mar 26, 2003.

  1. momoreg

    momoreg

    Messages:
    2,938
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    Lotus Cake Studio sent me this post via email, because she's been having trouble posting on Chef Talk:

    I recently started supplying my friend’s vegetarian restaurant with vegan cakes. The big seller is a veganized version of a strawberry shortcake: 3 layers of vanilla sponge cake with organic strawberry filling and a very airy vanilla buttercream. Right now, the cakes are just sliced and put on a plate. When I get some time, I’m supposed to help the owner figure out a simple plating plan that his wait staff can throw together. The strawberry shortcake is the only one I’m stumped on. I’ve finished it a number of ways and I’m not happy with any of them.

    1). How would you finish it?
    2). How would you plate it?
     
  2. momoreg

    momoreg

    Messages:
    2,938
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    A caramel dipped strawberry can look elegant as a garnish (soft caramel; not the kind that clamps your mouth shut), and a lacy sesame tuile, placed on an angle on top would not only look pretty, but also add some crunch, as well as another dimension of flavor.

    As airy as that buttercream may be, however, it just doesn't sound light enough for a strawberry shortcake. I know it's vegan, so you don't have a lot of options, but maybe custard or mousse would be better. Just my opinion.

    As far as sauces, virtually any fruit sauce would compliment a strawberry shortcake, and depending on time issues and the talent of the people plating, you can come up with a pretty combination of sauces.
     
  3. w.debord

    w.debord

    Messages:
    1,640
    Likes Received:
    11
    When I have a slice of cake to plate the first things I think about is can I slice it "different" or sit it different. But because your cake is layered with fruit and it will seperate if you do anything but a slice, your limited. If you could assemble it in a long loaf that would give you more cutting options.

    BUT (I just re-read) the wait staff is plating this, you can't do alot and get consistant results. I think a pool of sb coulis on one side of the cake and a whole berry on the other, sprinkle with xxxsugar is about as far as you can realisticly go.

    You could supply a garnish like a tuile, marizpan flower, chocolate shard for them to place on it.......but the more they have to fuss with it the less likely it will get done.
     
  4. pjm333

    pjm333

    Messages:
    173
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    I know this doesnt help, but i thought i would add this picture of a straberry shortcake i did..with lemon verbena cream and shortbread lattice

    pat
     
  5. pjm333

    pjm333

    Messages:
    173
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    try again
     
  6. kylew

    kylew

    Messages:
    1,635
    Likes Received:
    156
    Exp:
    Home Chef
    I'm with Wendy on the coulis. Given that the waitstaff is plating, I doubt you could count on them to nape the plate with the coulis, so a pool would work. While they might not properly place a chocolate shard, they might be convinced to sprinkle a few chocolate shavings. It might not seem that the waitstaff is motivated to plate nicely. There are compensated on the diners overall satisfaction, including presentation :)
     
  7. kylew

    kylew

    Messages:
    1,635
    Likes Received:
    156
    Exp:
    Home Chef
    Since I'm asking "What would this be?", I'm thinking that it didn't :)
     
  8. kylew

    kylew

    Messages:
    1,635
    Likes Received:
    156
    Exp:
    Home Chef
    LotusCakesStudio is having some technical difficulties. She sends this, as well as her warm regards :)

    Great ideas! I especially like the idea of sesame. I'll toy around with both.The last cake lady use a very light tofu icing which was absolutely disgusting. It tasted like... geez... beany tofu with sugar and vanilla added. Customers really like what I'm making now and I actually can't make it fast enough. I did try to tell the owner to call it a strawberry something or other cake, just not strawberry shortcake b/c buttercream doesn't even closely resemble whipped cream and though we agreed on using the organic strawberry jam for consistant taste year round and longer shelf life... it's still JAM and not fresh berries. But he's keeping the name so far... eh, as long as the customers are happy. I remember seeing a "healthy" version of Cool Whip at Whole Foods so I'm going to look into it and try it out. If it at least had that, I wouldn't mind it being called strawberry shortcake.

    This is what I was afraid of, but there's a new waitress working there. I met her tonight when I made a delivery and overheard her telling someone she was in art school. Hmmm! Sounds promising! I will talk to her next time when I'm not rushing and personally train her. The restaurant has a downstairs "Gourmet to Go" where people buy cake slices to go along with their sandwiches or dinner from the buffet table. The upstairs dining room is only opened Thursday - Sunday nights and it's pretty small so it's just one wait person and the owner who does the serving. So with less people to get on the same wavelength, the easier it'll be to actually get the stuff done. The owner's real passion is actually flower design so he has some artistic ability. The real problem is time constraints. Hard to wait tables AND plate the desserts when it gets busy.
     
  9. lotuscakestudio

    lotuscakestudio

    Messages:
    337
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    Oops! The rest of that post ^ was supposed to include asking Pat to please email me the photo. ([email protected]). Thanks Kyle!

    Now on to the drama of trying to get my pistachio cake thread replies posted. :p