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Which French Cakes are Great for Birthdays?

French Birthday Cakes

Baking French cakes is not something that can just “happen”. The French have created a global reputation of being ingenious bakers and their cakes are highly sought-after in countries across the world. Here in Australia, we have welcomed French baking and cooking with open arms and love to enjoy a variety of French cakes and desserts. Let’s see which baked French creations lend themselves beautifully as birthday cakes.

Baba au Rhum

Traditionally, this delicious cake is a very popular French dessert that tastes surprisingly good and doesn’t really take very long to bake. It’s a variant of a conventional rum cake- but its texture & taste are unique and interesting. It can be an excellent base for a birthday cake and can have cream frosting or any other icing you like. The ingredients lend themselves beautifully and complement a variety of flavours. You can bake this in a ring mould and it can be topped with whipped cream. Some versions also use a ganache.

Délice, Moelleux and Fondant

These are all delightful chocolate cakes which have oodles of chocolate & butter; very little flour is used in baking them. The result is tantalizing and delicious to the core. A moelleux has a delectable liquid centre (like a chocolate lava cake). All these cakes are simple, moist and chocolaty – just the way kids love them – this makes them perfect birthday cakes for a child.


This layered cake includes fresh strawberries. It’s a génoise cake (very much like a sponge cake), and it’s layered with smooth pastry cream. The fruit is added in a very clever way and you can see the juicy strawberry slices on the outside of this cake. This also makes for an excellent birthday cake – unlike a chocolate one, this one’s light, airy and fresh.


Most people know this as the black-forest cherry cake. Though it’s German in origin, most people believe it to be a French cake (on account of how popular it is in the country). This chocolate cake is carefully layered with delicious brandied cherries as well as whipped cream and then decorated with curled/shaved chocolate.

Gâteau Basque

This is an incredibly simple cake; it includes a thick layer of raspberry jam- this is layered in the cake and its sort of like short bread. Interestingly, this cake is also now making an appearance on birthday party tables and is enhanced with cream icing or even with fresh fruit (as is the latest trend).


This cake is essentially made of genoise cake layers, that are filled with coffee-flavoured buttercream & then very carefully decorated with even more buttercream as well as sliced almonds. Fruits can also be used on it, and it makes for a delicious birthday cake

Paris Brest Pâte

First a choux is baked in a ring-shape. This is then sliced into two, filled with hazelnut buttercream & decorated with powdered sugar and toasted almonds. This is perfect for an adult’s birthday cake – not too fancy or heavy and it can also be decorated with whipped cream and fresh fruit slices of your choice.


This cake is made in a mould called a charlotte mould. First this is lined with brioche or even lady fingers/any other cake. Its centre will then be filled ingredients such as apple charlotte, chocolate charlotte or pear charlotte. You can choose the one you like for your birthday party and then use a ganache for a special touch.

Chestnut Flour Cake

Though this is considered to be a French cake, the original recipe is Corsican. It has chestnut flour in it – this is commonly used in various Corsican dishes. This cake is becoming a very popular birthday cake in Australia, because it’s gluten-free. As it’s made from 100 percent chestnut flour, it’s soft & moist and of course – perfect for anyone who has celiac disease. The flavour of the chestnuts marries very well with chocolate, almonds, honey and hazelnuts.

These are just a few French birthday cakes that you can either bake or order from a cake shop. All of them are delicious and you will see their ingredients range from fruit and chocolate to almonds and chestnuts – which give each cake a very distinctive taste and texture.

Thanks for reading,
Ganache Patisserie
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