This recipe came from my mother and it is absolutely amazing. Every year on her birthday, Ana must have this cake for dessert or else I get in trouble. It is moist, delicately sweet and only gets better the second and third day, if it lasts that long!

Filling Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh strawberries, sliced (reserve 5 for decoration)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups heavy whipping cream

For the strawberries – In a small bowl, combine the sliced strawberries with the 3 tablespoons of sugar and stir. Cover with plastic wrap and let the bowl sit in the refrigerator for a couple hours, until the strawberries begin to release their juices.

For the pastry cream – In a small pan over medium heat, whisk together one can of sweetened condensed milk, the same can full of milk, the egg yolks and vanilla. When the mixture begins to simmer, add the two tablespoons of corn starch and whisk constantly until the cream thickens into a pastry cream consistency. Pour the cream into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly onto the surface of the cream to avoid from forming a skin. Place in the refrigerator to cool.

For the whipped cream – In a large bowl, beat the heavy whipping cream together with 2 tablespoons of sugar until soft peaks form. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Cake Ingredients
  • 6 eggs, separated
  • 3 cups flour
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 10 tablespoons hot milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • butter, softened

Butter a 12″ round cake pan and line with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 350º.

In a small bowl, beat the egg whites with a hand mixer until soft peaks form. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the egg yolks and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the milk slowly, beating constantly. Turn the mixer to low and add the flour and baking powder until well combined. Gently fold in the egg whites with the help of a spatula.

Pour the batter into the pan and bake for about 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

Let it cool and turn the cake out onto a platter. Using a long bread knife, gently divide the cake into 3 layers. To assemble the cake, start by generously brushing the bottom layer of cake with the juices from the strawberries. Layer on half the sliced strawberries, 1/3 cup of the pastry cream mixture, 2/3 cup of the whipped cream. Repeat the layering over the second round of cake, not forgetting to brush the round with strawberry juice. Add the top layer, brush with juice and allow the cake to rest in the refrigerator for a hour. Cover the cake in whipped cream and decorate the top with the 5 whole strawberries. Voila! Our favorite birthday cake…

– Chef Regina