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The January 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Astheroshe of the blog accro. She chose to challenge everyone to make a Biscuit Joconde Imprime to wrap around an Entremets dessert.

This month’s challenge proved to be a challenge in many ways! To start with I had never heard of “Biscuit Joconde Imprime” or “Entremets”. The only recognisable word was “biscuit” which in Australia is a cookie but there didn’t seem to be any of those in this challenge! So it was a little lesson in French with the help of a fellow Daring Baker, Audax Artifex, that helped me figure out exactly what we were baking this month!

 According to Audax, the three elements of this challenge are:-

1. The decorative paste in this challenge is called Patterned Joconde-Décor Paste this is the mixture that you make into a pattern on the silicone mat and freeze.
2.The sponge in this challenge is called Joconde Sponge this is the mixture that you spread over the frozen décor paste and then bake.
3. When you have baked the patterned paste and the sponge it is called a joconde imprime (sometimes called joconde or décor; imprime means prints) this terms means a decorative design baked into a light sponge cake providing an elegant finish to your product.
4. An entremet is a dessert with a joconde (imprime) outside filled with layers of various mousses, purées, sponges, cakes and biscuits etc.
5. The art of making joconde imprime is called décor skills in many place also.

So after all this I realised the challenge recipe only made the decorative external layer of the finished dessert, it was up to us how to fill and complete the dessert or entremet.

For the printable PDF of the challenge recipe click here.

As I had two special family birthdays to celebrate during the month of January, I decided this would make a wonderful birthday cake if the birthday message was written into the cake.  I could then fill it however I wanted.

To begin I coloured and flavour the Patterned Joconde-Décor Paste with cocoa and wrote my message on baking parchment. Then flipped the parchment over and piped the paste on backwards before proceeding with the recipe.
As you can see, once baked and  flipped over the message read correctly. This cake was then cut to fit a 23cm springform pan which I had lined with cling film.

The first cake was to celebrate my father’s 80th birthday. In honour of my late mother whose specialty dessert was the Italian classic “Zuppa Inglese”, I recreated a Zuppa Inglese-style Entremet.


The layers were cherry brandy soaked savoiardi biscuit (ladyfingers), chocolate bavarian, more cherry brandy soaked savoiardi, vanilla bavarian and black cherry gelee.
The second cake was to celebrate my daughter’s 16th birthday. She chose a black forrest style Entremet. 
First layer is a thin chocolate mude cake, chocolate bavarian, cherry bavarian topped with fresh whipped cream and fresh cherries. It was meant to have a layer of cherry gelee but that didn’t set properly so I removed it before topping with whipped cream. Oh well! Not everything works out! 
Vanilla Bavarian
recipe provided by our host Astheroshe
250 g milk
60g yolks
75 grams white sugar
8 grams gelatin ( bloomed in cold water)
250 grams heavy cream whipped to soft peaks
vanilla to taste (can also use a bean)
Combine milk, and vanilla and bring to boil
Whisk egg yolks and sugar until combined.
Temper milk into eggs.
Return to heat cooking slowly until it is nappe ( coats the back of a spoon)
Add bloomed gelatin , Strain, and stir over ice bath to cool quickly.
Fold in heavy heavy cream when mixture reaches 80F/ 26 C
For chocolate bavarian:- add 100g dark chocolate.
For Cherry bavarian: add 400g tin drained, black cherries – half pureed and half whole
                                 and also a little pink food colouring.
Cherry gelee
recipe provided by our host Astheroshe
This makes a shiny glazed top. A beautiful finish!
125 grams dark cherry purée
35 grams sucrose (sugar)
4.5 grams gelatin (bloomed, i.e. soaked in some water for a few minutes)
Mix the sugar with the purée, warm slightly. Add soaked gelatin. Cool . Pour over entremet in one pour. Use off spatula set to make even on top.
Many thanks to our host Astheroshe of accro for an amazing challenge that I would never have done on my own or even dreamed of!  Take a look at what these clever Daring Bakers created in January – Testado, Provadoe, Aprovado, Bake in Paris and CakeWalk!

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