My poor non French people,
Sorry I’ve been away for so long. I was very busy trying to understand how Snapchat works and if life has a meaning without instagram (turns out, not bad at all! You should check it out!)
Anyway, I made this cake today and brought it to the office I share with two beautiful and wonderful and very Los Angeles ladies, who of course have special diets (because, oui, it’s LA, mon ami!). Well, as French and perfect is the French and perfect baking tradition, there actually is a very traditional cake that is at the same time gluten free and dairy free and… absolument délicieux. It’s called Gâteau de Savoie, and I thought you might want to have the recipe
Gâteau de Savoie
Gâteau de Savoie is an ancient cake… History books pretend that it was invented in the 14th century, more than 700 years ago! Long before the Internet and pokemon Go, if you want to have an idea… The first lucky man to eat it was of course a king, even better, an emperor, Charles IV.
It bears the name of Savoie, because, hey, that’s the part of France where it was first invented, in the Alps area, where you can also find amazing cheeses like Beaufort, and a form of pasta I love and can’t find here in the US, crozets.
If you are lucky enough to be in Paris, have a reservation, and the wallet for it, the best gateau de Savoie I ever had is served every day at every meal at one of the oldest and best restaurant in town, Le Grand Véfour. You get to sit at where the best French writers used to eat (Colette, Victor Hugo -Les Miserables, anyone?), enjoy crazy dishes like truffle and foie gras pigeon (invented for Rainier, the little prince who got married to the great Grace Kelly), and once you have tried all the cheeses, just before the dessert, you are served this amazing cake. Complimentary! And so good.
This cake is “vintage” for me.
It was all the rage in the 60’s, when my grand mother was my age. She would serve it whenever she had people over, and my mother hated that. Why? Well because my grand mother did not own an electric beater at the time (not that I want to brag, but my mother lived in an house without electricity until she was 8. And then, go figure why, she got married to an electrician, but that’s another story), so my mother had to beat the egg white herself. French gym les amis!
It’s a very fluffy and light cake that you can agreement with butter cream or chantilly or fruit (raspberries, strawberries)… Last time I made it I sliced it in the middle and spread lemon mousse inside. SOOOOOO good! You can find other ideas in my cookbook by the way!
So go get your kitchenaid stand up mixer, bless the fate that had you born in a time where electricity is almost in every house, and enjoy this French and perfect, gluten free and dairy free cake!
- 6 eggs, white and yolks divided
- 1 1/4 cup Cornstarch
- 3/4 cup sugar
- Peel of one lemon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
How to make it
Preheat your oven at 400F
- First whip the egg whites with the salt. When they start to really get big, add 1/3 cup sugar. Stop when they look like a bird’s beak (bec d’oiseau, when it’s very stiff )
- Then beat the yolks and the sugar together for at least 10 minutes ( it’s going to change color and texture). Add the grated lemon peel. Mix again.
- Slowly mix the egg whites to the the mixture. For each spoon of egg white, mix another spoon of cornstarch.
- Pour into a buttered regular cake mold.
- Bake for 5 minutes at 400F and then lower the heat to 250F, for 35 minutes
Bon appétit les amis!