This spongecake is a more reliable version of classic génoise, and is good for all the same sorts of things: gâteaux, jelly rolls, bûche de Nöels (bûches?) you name it. And the process is simpler than a standard génoise. The only drawback is that it can’t handle as much syrup as a classic génoise, so if you’re making some very moist petits fours or a tres leeches cake, you’ll want to use the classic. It goes like this:
First, preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine the milk, butter and vanilla extract in a small saucepan and set it on to simmer. Once it reaches a simmer, take it off the heat.
Meanwhile, combine the eggs, yolks and sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle.
Beat that about 8 minutes until it’s very thick and the ribbons that fall from it persist for about five seconds before dissolving into the main mass.
Dribble the warm milk mixture down the side of the bowl.
Sift on a third of the flour.
Fold it in.
Sift on another third.
Fold. Add the final third and fold it in until it looks like this. Make sure to scrape up from under thoroughly.
Pour the batter into your prepared pan, in this case a parchment-lined sheet pan, but you can also bake it as a thicker cake, in a round or square.
Spread it all around, making sure to get in those corners.
Get fussy about evening it out. You want the layer to be as consistent as it can reasonably be.
Bake it for 10-12 minutes for a sheet, 20-25 for a cake, until it’s golden on top.
While it’s still hot, use a butter knife to loosen the sides.
Use as you see fit! As you can see, this is a good deal lighter than a standard génoise, and really a whole lot easier to prepare.
Fear génoise no more!