How to make a Saint Hanore Cake

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Each bite of this cake is an explosion of delight! The sensational textures range from the smooth of the cream to the puff of the profiteroles to the crunch of the caramel. Then there’s the build up of taste (a ‘ladder effect’) – from the neutral puff pastry to the custard and the choux pastry to the freshness of the cream and strawberry combination to the sweet crunch of the caramel on top…. oooooooh la la! 

Step One: Prepare Puff Pastry (buy or make your own – see ‘how to make puff pastry’)

  1. Roll out some puff pastry
  2. Cut a standard tart size circular shape into pastry
  3. Insert textures onto dough (use a fork)
  4. Brush with egg wash (mix one egg in a bowl and apply with a pastry brush)
  5. Place on baking tray

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Step Two: Make Caramel from sugar & water (melt sugar with water, add some glucose if you have and stir until it starts to caramelise – look out for a golden brown colour) … watch out it gets REALLY hot!

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Step Three: Make Choux Pastry (see ‘how to make choux pastry’ which includes photos of the process to make the base and balls for the Saint Hanore cake!)

  1. Once you have made the Choux Paste/Pastry:  pipe it onto puff pastry base in a loose whirl shape (use a piping bag with a flat nozzle) and place on baking sheet on baking tray
  2. Pipe choux pastry in small circular shapes onto the same baking sheet
  3. Preheat oven to 180 – 190 degrees Celsius & pop into the oven when temperature is reached
  4. Check for READINESS:  Take out of oven when the choux pastry is light brown & crisp & LIGHT – tap for hollow sound
  5. Allow to cool

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Step Four: Make Creme Patisserie (see seperate recipe ‘how to make creme patisserie’ which is a custard – it will later be mixed with cream)

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Step Five: Beat Cream & Make Creme Santanore ( mix 2/3 Creme Patisserie ie. your custard &  1/3 Cream or mix to taste and remember to leave a whole lot of cream for your topping later)

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Step Six: Warm caramel in pot on stove

Step Seven: Prepare Profiteroles

  1. Make holes in bottom of Profiteroles (use the end of a teaspoon handle)
  2. Dip top of Profiteroles into warm caramel and allow to cool on tray in neat rows
  3. Dip last Profiterole into caramel and leave long string of caramel to cool upside down (for top of cake)
  4. Pipe Creme Santanore into holes of Profiteroles

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Step Eight: Build Cake

To sum up :  The base of the Saint Hanore is made of puff pastry and a layer of choux pastry which is then covered in a custard mix. A layer of cream is piped on top of that.  The cake is then topped with custard ‘infused’ profiterole balls, all dipped in caramel.   The final straw: the berries! They bring it all together with their vibrant colour and freshness… and somehow lessen the (possible!) guilt.

  1. Take puff pastry base (with whirl shaped choux pastry) & pipe Creme Santanore on top of it  –  in blobs in circular shapes (from outside in) or in a whirl shape (open flat nozzle as before)
  2. Place a circle of Profiteroles around the edge of the base on top of the Creme Santanore
  3. Pipe cream in elongated shapes from outside in (in rows forming a ‘flower shape’)
  4. Place the last Profiterole with caramel tail on top
  5. Make whirl shape out of caramel (wrap around a carving knife to form springs) and add to centre piece
  6. Slip ¼ strawberries between the cream folds along the edge for a traditional approach (or full berries should you prefer)

FINALLY: Invite your most decadent friends to a tea party OR eat your creation yourself, why not? Either way, make sure its gobbled up in a couple of hours!

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2 thoughts on “How to make a Saint Hanore Cake

  1. I think this has to be the most delicious thing we’ve made so far… besides our teacher’s secret cheesecake… thing is, it does take time!

  2. I made this cake at home without a baking sheet… faux pas! Even though I buttered the baking tray the profiteroles stuck to the bottom. I ended up creating Upside Down Profiteroles filled with custard, cream and strawberries since the bottoms no longer existed by the time I had scraped them off the tray!

    Also, beware not to add too much caramel on top – dip the profiterole top into the caramel when it’s still very hot and not gooey!

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