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Fresh Strawberry Filling

This general approach works well for many kinds of fruit, though strawberries have quite a bit more water in them than fruits like plums or even raspberries, so a little more reduction is called for here. The recipe comes by way of Rose Levy Beranbaum, the queen of cakes. She calls this preparation “strawberry conserve”, and uses it to flavor buttercreams and spread on cake rolls. Compared to a typical jam or store-bought filling it has a good deal less sugar and more real fruit flavor, and there’s nothing wrong with that. You’ll need:

4 pounds fresh or frozen (no sugar added) strawberries
8 ounces (generous cup) sugar
12 ounces (1 1/2 cups) water


About Fresh Fruit Fillings

Most of the time a simple jam filling is enough for us pastry people. Jams are great between cake layers, in coffee cakes or in Danishes. But sometimes jams just don’t cut it. Jams are thick, they’re also sweet —depending on the application, they can be far too much so — and have only small pieces of fruit, which can be, quite frankly, disappointing. Should they be a little loose or soupy, as many homemade jams are, they can weep into whatever you’re spreading them on.