As I mentioned below, Bavarians are a very large family of mousse (or cream) desserts. This particular style has been in vogue lately, and who am I to fly in the face of fashion? Plus it was fun. I hope to do more Bavarians in the future, so stay tuned for an expanding menu. This one can be made with any sort of fruit mousse, I chose peach because the fruit was in season. To begin, prepare your components. As with any multi-component pastry it’s best to make the various pieces-parts over several days leading up to the assembly. Save the last day to make it since you’ll need a couple of hours of build time and at least five hours of chill time to get it done.
So then, start with the joconde sheet. Trim off the rough edges.
Then measure so you know where to make your cuts. You want to cut this full sheet into four equal pieces.
Stack them up when you’re done to make sure the edges are even. If not do a little trimming.
Take the stack apart and apply a very thin coating of apricot glaze (or whatever jam you want to use) to the bottom sheet.
Add the next one.
Paint it, and proceed like so until your stack is rebuilt.
Now it’s time to cut the stack into strips. My mold is 3 inches high and I want my joconde strips to come half way up the mold. So I want these strips 1 1/2 inches wide. So I make a little cut at the near edge of the stack to remind me where the 1 1/2 inch mark is…
…then another on the far edge of the stack.
Then gently saw.
Continue across the stack. I got a total of three strips. Know who gets that last bit? You bet you do. Who said “coffee break”?
Now cut the strips crossways into pieces roughly 1/2 an inch wide. No need to measure unless you really want to.
Now then. You see here that I have a bottomless ring mold set on a (temporary) cardboard base. The mold is 6 inches across and 3 inches high, which is a great size for these sorts of desserts. If you want to go 8 inches across you’ll have enough cake. If not, more snacks for the hard working pastry maker.
So then. To lay the cake in, paint the top and bottom lightly with apricot glaze…
…which will act as a sort of glue to keep the cake pieces stuck together.
Keep going all the way around and tuck the last piece in fairly tightly so the cake sections don’t fall inward. Now then, using your round cutter set (if you have one) pick a size that fits the depression in the center…
…and use it to cut a piece of génoise for the bottom. You can use any sort of cake here if you don’t want to go to the trouble of making génoise (though it’s easier than joconde!).
Lay it in!
Next, prepare your mousse. I’ll wait.
Dum de dum…
All set? Then spoon it in.
Tuck it in around the edges of the mold, heaping it up a little. You’ll use most of your batch of mousse. Then…
…using your icing spatula or some sort of straight edge, scrape the top even. Save the overflow for some late night calorie-laden escapade. Apply some plastic wrap to the top and refrigerate the filled mold for at least four hours. Half an hour to an hour before you unmold the pastry, put it in the freezer to really firm it (but you don’t want to freeze it, so no more than an hour, K?).
When you’re ready to unmold the pastry, gently run an icing spatula underneath to loosen it.
Place it on your serving plate.
Then wrap a hot towel around it. This one has been soaked in hot tap water and wrung out. Leave it for 30 seconds.
Apply a piece of cardboard to the top of the mold on top of the plastic wrap, cut just a bit smaller then the mold (this was my former cardboard base).
Gather the plastic wrap up around the cardboard…
…and press down on it with your thumbs or index fingers while gently pulling up on the ring with your other fingers (I recommend two hands…my other hand was busy here snapping pictures). Easy does it.
And off it comes. Gently remove the plastic-wrapped cardboard circle.
Smooth out any defects in the mousse with an icing spatula. You can heat it under hot tap water if the mousse isn’t yielding. Make sure to dry it!
Ain’t it purty?
I thought it needed a little more color on top so I applied the last of my apricot glaze (another stone fruit that compliments peach nicely).
Serve soon. Like, within a couple of hours if not immediately.
Easy, right? And how does it slice?