The Savarin is a curious cake…light, bland, airy, and spongy, the better to absorb a soaking of sugar syrup and liqueur. I don’t have very good photos of the process or the finished cake – my finished Savarin was not especially photogenic. Instead of baking it in a bundt pan as I had planned, I used a springform pan with a ring insert that was smaller, since the volume of dough produced by this recipe was pretty skimpy.
The dough is really a slightly sweet enriched bread dough, made with just yeast, water, a little sugar, flour, an egg, and a bit of butter. The cake is quite bland on its own, before it is plumped with syrup. Mine stuck to its pan a little. I either needed to use more butter on the mold, and/or the Savarin needed a few more minutes in the oven. I think some browning would have helped its appearance as well as its texture.
I had some fresh local strawberries from the Farmers Market and extra soaking syrup, so I reduced the syrup and combined it with the sliced strawberries for filling the center of the Savarin. It was very moist and light, and easy to put together, as the rising times are very short. It’s also a pretty presentation. Using strawberries invited the comparison with strawberry shortcake, and for me, shortcake is the winner.
The recipe is on pages 416-417 of Baking With Julia. You can also read about other bakers’ experiences with this recipe by following their links at the Tuesdays With Dorie blog.