Fraisier with sponge fingers or ladyfingers and pistachio paste by Christophe Felder

The fraisier is a well-known French dessert made with strawberries, this version comes from the Great French Pastry Chef Christophe Felder who uses sponge fingers or ladyfingers to make the biscuit part of the dessert, and this changes everything because it’s not very usual :-) It’s very light in taste and by making it you are sure to make a great dessert no matter where you are.

It’s sure that the recipe requires some technical skills concerning the use of the piping bag, but at some point, I will make a post describing how to use it because once we’ve done it at least once, you will be able to use it more easily the following time. It’s a matter of practice and a good teacher :-)

Try this dessert because it’s really good and you worth it :-)

In two words:

“It’s a play to contemplate while drinking at the upper high pavilion”

To Start...

difficulty - quite easy but it makes scare
preparation - 10’ (for the ladyfingers) + 10’ and 1h of resting (for the crème diplomate) + 10’ (for putting all together)
cooking - 10’ (for the ladyfinger biscuit) 
serves - 6


for the ladyfinger biscuit

  • 2 egg whites
  • 65gr of caster sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 65gr of all-purpose flour
  • 20gr of caster sugar

for the « diplomate » cream with fruits (*)

  • 1,5 of unflavored gelatin leaves (a leave of gelatin weighs 1,6-1,7gr)
  • 200ml of whole milk
  • 80% of a vanilla pod
  • 50gr of egg yolks (~3eggs)
  • 50gr of caster sugar
  • 20gr of corn flour
  • 20gr of cold butter
  • 80gr of heavy cream
  • 15gr of pistachio paste

for the fruit syrup

  • 40gr of strawberry puree (~70gr of fresh strawberries)
  • 20gr of water
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

to garnish

  • ~330gr for strawberries without their top
  • some pistachios (not salted) and without their skin (if possible)


before starting

  • Place a metallic bowl into the freezer with the whisks of an electric hand mixer

for the ladyfinger biscuit

  • Preheat the oven at 170°C
  • Add the egg whites into a large bowl
  • Add just a little bit of salt
  • Start beating the eggs to form a meringue
  • When they are starting to rise, add slowly the caster sugar in batches, and continue to beat after each addition; at the end, you will have a tight meringue with soft peaks
  • Add the egg yolks, one by one, and continue to beat in slower speed
  • Sieve the flour on top of the meringue, little-by-little, and stir everything gently with a rubber spatula
  • Draw 2 squares, 16cm x 16cm, onto parchment paper and place them onto a tray
  • Place the batter gently into a piping bag with a plain pastry tip of 10mm of Ø
  • Pipe the biscuit on the square drawings by creating zig-zags touching each other
  • (Please note that you can bake the biscuits separately if your oven is small)
  • Sieve on top the confectioner’s sugar
  • Let the biscuits rest for 5’
  • Bake them for 10’
  • Let them cool onto a rack

for the « diplomate » cream with fruits

  • Place the gelatin leaves into a shallow dish with cold water
  • In a large bowl, start beating the egg yolks
  • Add the caster sugar slowly by batches and continue to beat after each addition
  • Add the corn flour little-by-little and continue to beat after each addition
  • At the end, you will have a smooth cream
  • Add the milk into a casserole
  • Halve the vanilla pod in two and scrape out the seeds by using a knife
  • Add the seeds into the milk and heat it up
  • Once the milk is hot, mix the cream again with the electric mixer to get it smooth again, and add some hot milk
  • Use the mixer to absorb the milk into the cream
  • Pour the cream into the casserole and start whisking with a hand whisk
  • Once the cream starts to boil, remove it from heat and place it into a bowl
  • Add the cold butter cut in pieces
  • Stir well with the whisk to absorb the butter and chill down the cream
  • Add the gelatin, already drained, and stir with the whisk to absorb it into the cream
  • Pour in the cream into a bowl
  • Place some plastic wrap on top to cover the cream completely
  • Place the bowl into the freezer to cool it down for 10’
  • Once the cream is quite cold, add the pistachio paste and stir well
  • Place the cream into a large bowl; it should be big enough to contain the whipped cream that you are going to make just afterwards
  • Take the metallic blow out of the freezer
  • Pour the heavy cream into it
  • Start beating the cream until a whipped cream starts forming
  • Once the whipped cream is ready, add it little-by-little and gently into the pistachio cream and stir everything gently with a rubber spatula
  • Add the new cream (crème diplomate) into the refrigerator for 1h

for the fruits syrup

  • Wash and remove the greens from the strawberries
  • Place them into an electric chopper
  • Add the water and the lemon juice and turn on the machine
  • Press the strawberries puree through a sieve to remove the small pieces of strawberry and keep only the syrup

bring it all together

  • Wash and remove the greens from the strawberries
  • Slice them in half
  • Place one of the biscuits into a dish with the top facing down
  • Remove gently the parchment paper
  • Wet the biscuit with some of the syrup
  • Place the other biscuit into a dish as well, top facing down, and gently remove the parchment paper
  • Wet the second biscuit with the remaining syrup
  • Place the crème diplomate into a piping bag with a plain pastry tip of 10mm of Ø
  • Pipe the cream onto the first biscuit by making neighboring strips
  • Place the strawberries all around the biscuit with their top facing down
  • Fill all the remaining space with the remaining strawberries, always at the same direction (top facing down), and keep some for decorating; you should press the strawberries into the cream a little to help them hold into the biscuit and cream
  • Pipe the remaining cream on top of the strawberries and don’t miss to fill the empty spaces
  • Turn upside down gently the second biscuit and place it on the cream just like a covering top
  • Place on top some strawberries and some roughly chopped pistachios; if you want you can sprinkle some icing sugar
  • Place the dessert into the refrigerator for some time before eating it
  • It’s very good and delicate!
  • Enjoy!


This dessert comes from the latest book by Christophe Felder Entremets, Editions de la Martinière, Paris, 2020, p. 24. (I am referring to the French boutique of Amazon because the book is much cheaper there)

This is an extraordinary book with wonderful photos, well written instructions and above all drawings on how to construct and build the desserts (entremets) which may seem rather complicated!

Mr. Felder is a well-known French Pastry Chef who has created many books, and in various prices, that help people to create beautiful desserts that are tasteful and delicate as is all French pastry!

(*) The cream crème diplomate is a combination of pastry cream, whipped cream and gelatin :-)

o-o C'est si bon ! o-o

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