My sister was wanting me to put fresh berries into the filling of her daughters communion cake. I was thinking of making a vanilla cake, torting it and filing it with white choco mousse and fresh strawberries. My concern would be the berries weeping making a mess of the outside of the cake. I understand i would have to pipe a dam but would that be enough to keep the juices contained? I would probably be filling it on Friday, decorating it on sat for delivery on Sunday. Any suggestions would be appreciated. In the past i have always used bagged strawberry filling so i'm a little concerned. I did make one cake with berries on top of the cake, even with a really large top border the juices still leaked down the cake. I certainly don't want tthis to happen to the cake this time. i'm undecided at this time if i would be covering it in fondant, but with the berries now i'm thinking maybe buttercream would be the way to go.
usually when I make strawberry filling I drain the berries and reserve their liquids. I take the liquid and add a few tablespoons of cornstarch and sugar with a squeeze of lemon juice and heat it till it boils and thickens. Then I add the berries and place in the fridge. I still put a dam around the cake and then spread the filling. I haven't have a problem with the filling spilling out since it's thicker than it's natural juices. Hope this helps.
I have made many many cakes with mousse and fresh fruit fillings. Just make sure you have a good dam around the edge. I usually put a layer of mousse, then a layer of fruit and more mousse on top of the fruit. Just make sure not to make the layers of mousse too thick. Keep your entire filling layer to about 1/2 inch. I have never had a complaint about the fruit weeping. One tip, after you wash your berries make sure you dry them well before cutting them.
Wash the berries, cut them and let them dry on paper towel - one layer only.
You can make the dam double thick and put the cake in the fridge for 1/2 hour (I work with non crusting buttercream).
Then put the filling in - the dam doesn't allow any leaking. If you want to be completely sure, give the cake buttercream crumbcoat before and it won't leak in the cake itself.
For fresh berries on top of the cake:
Next time dry the berries completely on paper towel and coat them in thin gelatin glaze. They won't leak, get shine and cut berries hold better.
I hope you can understand what I mean - English is my third or four language.