Grilled Cinnamon Sugar Sponge Cake with Whipped Cream Cheese and Boozy Berries

Isn’t it just awesome when you can wake up in the morning and throw on a pair of shorts and a t-shirt and run outside to the garden to pick a handful of strawberries for this incredibly easy dessert?

I know it’s February.

I know I live in Canada.

Ughhhh…can we just be done with winter already?

If any of you are feeling like me – the fact that the first 8 weeks of 2018 have felt like it has been decades long – you will be happy to know that I am dangling a “summer carrot” recipe of sorts.

This is a super fast dessert that is so quick, you can do it on the busiest weeknight and still fancy enough for your weekend dinner party.

Honest engine!

And, if any of you have been to my cooking classes, I’m pretty firm about cooking in season and, also about never, ever buying fresh strawberries out of season (I do a whole rant on how they taste like cardboard and that they’re shipped in gas filled trucks across the continent…not good).

But, forgive me as I go back on my word to eat seasonally in order to bring in a ray of sunshine.  We are going to use fresh strawberries but liven them up by macerating them with a wee bit of sugar and a wee bit of booze.

I mean, how bad can that be, right?

This picture above was made today as I tested a condensed milk cake for the cookbook.  It was dense enough to stand up to the grilling method but you can also use any dense homemade cake or even store bought for ease!

And by grilling, I mean I warmed up my cast iron grill and toasted the cake there.

I know you just pictured me in my shorts by the barbecue, right?

Grilled Cinnamon Sugar Sponge Cake with Whipped Cream Cheese and Boozy Berries
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Cook time: 
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Serves: 6
 
The easiest way to bring summer to your table in the middle of winter!!!
Ingredients
  • ½ cup (125 mL) granulated sugar + 1 tbsp (15 mL)
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) ground cinnamon
  • 1 pkg (250 g) cream cheese
  • 1 cup (250 mL) icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) orange juice
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) orange zest
  • 1 cup (250 mL) heavy cream, whipped
  • 4 cups (1 L) slice strawberries
  • 1 c raspberries
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) Grand Marnier (optional but yummy!)
  • 1 store-bought sponge/pound cake
  • ¼ cup (60 mL) butter, softened
Instructions
  1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat (or heat a grill pan on top of the stove). In a small bowl, mix ½ cup sugar and cinnamon and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip cream cheese with icing sugar, orange juice and zest until creamy. Fold in whipped cream. In a separate bowl, add strawberries, Grand Marnier (if using) and remaining 1 tbsp sugar; toss gently and refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Cut sponge cake into 2-inch-thick slices; you’ll need 6 slices for this recipe (store remaining cake in a tightly sealed container for another use).
  4. Gently butter both sides of each slice and sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mix.
  5. Grill both sides of each slice just until toasted (you want it crispy but not burnt!).
  6. To assemble, place a grilled slice of cake on each plate, top with some of the whipped cream cheese and a generous spoonful of berries (don’t forget to drizzle it with some of the liquid).
  7. Serve immediately.
 

 

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