How to Make Japanese Strawberry Shortcake
When Japanese people think about cakes, strawberry shortcake is probably the first cake that comes to mind. In fact, strawberry shortcake is of the most popular cakes in Japan. The texture is so fluffy and light, and the combination of the cake, whipped cream, and strawberries is a match made in heaven. Strawberry shortcake is a perfect cake to eat on birthdays, Christmas, or any other special occasion.
The sweetness of the fluffy sponge cake, the richness of the whipped cream, and the freshness of the strawberries will create a perfect harmony in your mouth once you take a bite. The layers of whipped cream and strawberries also provide moisture to the sponge cake.
Compared to shortcakes from other countries, Japanese shortcake has a much lighter texture and flavor. The way strawberry shortcake came to be in Japan was because of a Japanese cake shop called “Fujiya”. It is said that the founder of the Japanese cake shop “Fujiya” traveled to the USA to study western confectionery in 1912. This experience inspired him to invent a Japanese version of shortcake. Unlike American shortcake, which consists of biscuits instead of cake, the owner of Fujiya believed that Japanese people would prefer a cake that had a moister and softer texture.
It is not easy to make a perfect shortcake. The decorating part may be especially difficult if you’re not used to frosting cakes at home. In this recipe, we provide the standard amount of fresh cream used for a 15cm cake, but you can also change up the amount of cream used if you’d like. You can also decorate the cake differently, by adding more layers of cream or omitting the cream altogether.
Strawberry shortcake is sold in cake shops all year round in Japan. You can also find shortcakes made with seasonal fruits, such as Melon in summer or muscat and grapes in fall. If strawberries are not in season where you live, try making this cake with other fruits! We hope you’ll enjoy our strawberry shortcake recipe, and enjoy being creative with the decoration of this cake if you wish.
Prep time: 30 mins
Cook time: 60 mins
Total time: 1hr 30mins
Total servings: 4
- 2 Eggs
- 60g Sugar
- 1 Tbsp Whole Milk
- 10g Butter (melted)
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 60g All Purpose Flour
- 250cc Fresh Cream (for the whipped cream)
- 2 Tbsp Sugar (for the whipped cream)
- 2 Tbsp Water (for the syrup)
- 20g Sugar (for the syrup)
It is best to use a whisk for whipping the cream in the end. It is difficult to know the best time to stop whipping with a hand mixer. This whisk is also made of high-quality stainless steel, so it will last in your kitchen for years.
1) Gathering all the Ingredients and Preheating the Oven
Gather the ingredients together. Preheat the oven to 180C (356F) and line a cake pan with parchment paper.
Note: We are using a pan that has a removable bottom.
2) Mixing the Eggs and Sugar
In a large bowl, add the eggs and sugar and whip it with a hand mixer. Beat the eggs and sugar together until they become light in color and the texture becomes thicker. This will take about 6-7 minutes. The batter should form a ribbon when dropped from the whisk. Finish at low speed to make the eggs smooth until it looks shiny.
3) Adding in the Rest of the Ingredients
Combine the milk and melted butter together and then add that and vanilla extract to the egg mixture. Once you’ve added in all of the wet ingredients, switch to using a rubber spatula and add all-purpose flour. Fold the flour in gently to make sure there are no patches of flour in the batter. Add the butter very slowly and mix again until the entire mixture is evenly mixed.
Tips: This is an important step. Try not to deflate the batter by over-mixing it.
We use a rubber spatula instead of an electric hand mixer to be careful not to overmix or deflate the batter.
4) Pouring the Batter into the Cake Mold
Pour the batter into the cake mold. Flatten the surface lightly with a spatula. Tap the cake pan onto the counter to release the air bubbles in the batter.
5) Baking the Cake
Bake the cake at 180C(356F) for 25 minutes.
The cake is ready when the top turns golden brown and when the surface of the cake has a light elasticity when you gently touch it. You can also check by poking the cake with a bamboo stick. If it comes out clean, it’s done.
Drop the cake on the counter to give it a “shock” so that it does not shrink. Leave it for 1-2 minutes on the wire rack. Take the cake out of the mold and rest it until it completely cools.
6) Ingredients for Decorating the Cake
Gather the ingredients for decorating the cake.
7) Making the Layers
Combine water and sugar for the syrup. This syrup is for preventing the cake layers from drying out. Heat the ingredients in a pan and dissolve the sugar.
Make sure the sponge cake has completely cooled, then slice it evenly through the middle to create two layers. Then, brush each layer with the sugar syrup that we just made.
Then, prep the strawberries by slicing them thinly. Be sure to use strawberries that are all roughly the same size.
Add the cold fresh cream and sugar into a large bowl and beat it with the hand mixer until the cream thickens and develops soft peaks. In order to have a thicker cream for the top layer, whip the cream with a whisk on the edge of the bowl.
Spread the whipped cream evenly and then place an even layer of sliced strawberries on top. Add another layer of whipped cream and place the top layer of the cake over the cream.
Tip: We recommend using an offset spatula to frost the cake with whipped cream.
8) Decorating the Cake
Add the rest of the whipped cream on top of the cake. Then cover the sides of the cake with cream.
Whip the cream again with a whisk to form stiff peaks. Then put the cream into the piping bag. Decorate the cake as you wish with the remaining whipped cream and strawberries, and it's done!
Note: this cake tastes better after resting overnight. You can also keep the cake in the refrigerator for 2 days.