12.12.2017
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12.05.2017

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A very easy and simple spring time dessert, with layers of lemon flavoured cookies, vanilla pudding, cheesecake cream and fresh strawberries. Fluffy, airy and perfect for the warm days ahead.

Fridge cakes, or icebox cakes as they are known over the pond, are popular everywhere. There are loads of different versions, with some going in the freezer, others staying in the fridge, some with pudding, some with cream cheese, some with cream, some with fruit, some with digestives, some with wafers, some with sandwich cookies. Whichever way you make yours, it’s probably one of the household favourites, am I right?

Strawberries and Cream Fridge (Icebox) Cake www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: Close up of the baking dish from a ¾ angle, with a piece of cake missing from the front corner. The layers of the cake are visible from the side. In the background to the right the bowl of strawberries.

It was my birthday the other day, and I really wanted to make something that would remind me that even though it was a Wednesday and I had to work and we didn’t do anything special, it wasn’t just any Wednesday. But at the same time, I really didn’t have the time or energy to bake a proper cake, or make a complicated dessert. Perfect opportunity for this fridge cake.

Strawberries and Cream Fridge (Icebox) Cake www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: A bowl with a pretty flowery pattern around the rim, filled with whole strawberries. The bowl is in the centre of the photo, sitting on a stripy linen material.

Straightforward and uncomplicated, the only faffy part is slicing the strawberries. I used a vanilla pudding (the instant type), lemon flavoured sandwich biscuits (cookies) with a lemon filling (you could use vanilla or whatever you like best), a cheesecake type cream (cream cheese, sugar and whipped cream) and of course strawberries.

The best time to enjoy this dessert is on the second day. It needs a night to chill in the fridge, not so much to set, but to let the biscuits soften from the other ingredients and the cold temperature. They become sort of cake like, and this is what we want. The second day is perfect. After that it’s fine but maybe a bit too soft for some people’s liking. I don’t mind one bit, as anyone can tell by the way I sneak spoonfulls out every time I open the fridge door.

Strawberries and Cream Fridge (Icebox) Cake www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: Two pieces of cake on a white marble cutting board. The pieces are sloppy and some of the cream is spilling over. Two spoons with spoonfulls of cake are lying next to the pieces. To the top right the bowl of strawberries.

Strawberry season doesn’t last long in Greece, so I try to enjoy these babies as much as possible when they’re around. This is a great way to do it!

Ingredients

200gr (about 14) sandwich cookies lemon or vanilla flavour (this would be one packet in Greece)

extra cookies, either same as above or plain, to fill in gaps in layers and to garnish

1 packet instant vanilla pudding (or custard would be nice)

milk as per directions on pudding packet

600gr strawberries, washed, hulled and sliced, plus extra to garnish

300ml heavy cream, full fat, cold

200gr cream cheese, at room temperature

38gr (5 Tbs) icing sugar

Step 1

Separate sandwich cookies by twisting them gently. Don’t pull apart or they might break. Spread half over the bottom of a 25x19cm baking dish. Fill any large gaps with broken pieces from the extra biscuits.

Step 2

Make instant pudding and pour over the base.

Step 3

Use about a third of the sliced strawberries (200gr) to make a layer on the pudding.

Step 4

Place the rest of the cookies on top of the strawberries in another layer.

Step 5

Add more strawberries (200gr) this time on top of the cookie layer. Put the dish in the fridge.

Step 6

Beat 100ml of cream until it forms soft peaks (till it becomes like yogurt), add 100gr of soft cream cheese and 2 Tbs of icing sugar. Beat till incorporated, not too much so it doesn’t stiffen. Spread mixture over the strawberry layer with a spatula. The trick is to gradually add dollops here and there, while spreading. Bring the spatula almost parallel to the dessert, rather than holding it upright or at an angle, and apply a little downward pressure. This way the strawberries won’t move about as much. You might get annoyed when they do, I did, just breathe and do it carefully and it will be fine!

Step 7

Add more strawberries! (the last 200gr) Pop the dish back in the fridge.

Step 8

Beat the rest of the cream (200ml) until it becomes like yogurt, add the rest of the cream cheese (100gr) and icing sugar (3 Tbs). Beat till smooth and layer on the dessert. This is the final layer.

Step 9

Crumble some more cookies over the top and add some strawberries to decorate. Let it sit in the fridge overnight and serve the next day.

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