Saturday, August 30, 2008
I made this cake using a springform pan and I baked it in a water bath. The last time I made this, I simply put the springform in the waterbath and bake. However, this time I encountered some problems. When I took the cake out of the water bath (still in the springform pan), I notice that some water has seeped into the springform pan causing the bottom part of the JCC to be a little soggy. I was worried that this may affect the cake. I really don't know how it affected the taste since I didn't get to try any of the cake and I didn't really hear back from the people who ate them. :p Maybe it's because the cake wasn't too good. -_-
Anyways, I consulted with a baker friend about this and she suggested that I wrapped my springform pan with foil before I put it in the waterbath to make sure that no water seeped in. So I went ahead and followed her advice in my next JCC, which is a Green Tea JCC.
At first everything went smoothly. I pre-heated the oven, I worked the batter, poured it to the pan, and then put it in the oven. I turned the timer on for 30 minutes and then waited. After about 20 minutes, I took a peek at the oven to see how my cake is doing and strangely, the batter didn't rise at all, which is very unusual. I started to trace back my steps to see if I had done anything wrong to cause this, but I couldn't think of anything. So after 30 minutes, I checked on it again and the batter still looks the same from 10 minutes ago. It didn't rise and nor was it brown at the top. This is VERY strange because even if the batter didn't inflate, the cake would've been baked. Then I noticed... the oven was turned OFF! *GASP!!*
I panicked and I felt really upset. I thought my cake would be ruined! All those eggs gone to waste! But in the spirit of not giving up, I turned the oven back on and put another 30 minutes on the oven. I checked on my cake every now and then. The batter started to inflate and the top started to brown. I used a skewer to check if the cake has been thoroughly baked after 30 minutes, and then I took it out.
It turns out that the cake was just fine. The taste and the texture of the cake was like normal. I was very surprised myself. :) Here is a picture of it after we ate some at the small group meeting.
Yes... I know... it was a TOTAL mistake. It turns out that whenever you freeze strawberries, the texture of the fruit changes and it became mushy when thawed. My heart broke a little that night when I realized what I had just done to my strawberries. In an effort to salvage whatever is left of my strawberries, I made a Strawberry Mousse Cake.
Friday, August 29, 2008
This cake is made of 2 layers of vanilla sponge cake brushed with simple syrup, lots of fresh strawberries, and apple chantilly cream on the inside and outside. I really like the apple chantilly cream. It has a very fresh smell and makes eating the cake more fun!
I made this cake for Ci Lia's birthday. :) Alvin helped me with sprinkling the cake with chocolate.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
This is a Black Forest Cake. I made this one a little different than the one I made before. The cake consist of 3 layers of chocolate sponge cake brushed with rum simple syrup. The first filling layer consist of dark bing cherries in chocolate-rum chantilly cream. The second filling consist of dark bing cherries in rum chantilly cream. I also played around with the decorations. If you notice, the chocolate shavings on the cake has 2 different shades. The lighter one (inner circle) is made of milk chocolate while the darker one (outer loop) is made of dark chocolate.
Friday, August 22, 2008
The cake is made of 2 layers of vanilla sponge cake brushed with kahlua-coffee syrup, 2 layers of rum mascarpone cream, and dusted with cocoa powder. This is the first time I made a Tiramisu cake without a container. I usually made these in a pyrex pan and therefore I don't have to worry about the structure of the cake. So this time, I add some gelatine to the cream so that it is more stable. I think (based on the responses I got) it doesn't really affect the taste of the cake. I also lined the cake with ladyfingers to make a fortified wall and then wrap it with my favorite ribbon.
Shuo always scream "Cium! Cium!" in other people's birthday and so I thought I'd give her a scream as well on her birthday. *_^
Here is a picture of the cake before it is decorated.
Here is a picture of the cake when decorated.
This cake consist of 3 layers: a sponge cake base, mango mousse, and mango jelly. The sponge cake base can be any kind of sponge cake you like.
For the mango mousse:
2 cups of fresh mango puree
1/4 cups of sugar
1 cup of whipped cream
1 1/2 packets of gelatin
1/4 cups of water
For the mango jelly:
1 cup of fresh mango puree
2 tablespoons of sugar
1/4 cups of orange liquor (or water)
1 packet of gelatin
I have also used some lychees on top of the sponge cake as an element of "surprise" in the cake. I've used milk chocolate in my decorations. Here is a picture of the cake when cut.
I didn't have much fruit at home to make an elaborate decorations so I settled with the Kiwi-Grape combo. I thought that it looks nice even though it's simple. Here is a close up picture of the mini JCC.
This cake is based of my mom's chiffon cake recipe, which I have memorized by heart now. :) I have covered the cake with Indonesian Kraft cheese (very hard to find in Houston) and I have decorated it with some red cherries.
I like the overall look of the cake. It's rather simple, but at the same time it's quite pretty. I didn't get to try the cake as she brought it to CS. I hope she enjoyed it!
For the filling, I have used diplomat cream, which is pastry cream mixed with whipped cream. The chocolate glaze I used in this recipe is from the CIA cookbook and it's really chocolate ganache. It's simply a mixture of heavy cream, corn syrup, and chocolates. The awesome thing about this glaze is that it stays shiny even though I refrigerate it.
This cake is made of 3 layers of moist chocolate sponge cake brushed with rum simple syrup, 2 layers of diplomat cream, and covered in chocolate ganache. I'm still learning on how to glaze with ganache. As you can see, the glaze is not very smooth. I will definitely try better next time.
I brought this cake along with a Indonesian cheesecake. I've received positive reactions for both cakes although there are divided opinion as to which cake my friends like most.
ps. Diplomat cream is pastry cream mixed with some whipped cream. The ratio I used is 2 cups of pastry cream to 1 cup of whipped cream.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Of course, I did enjoy baking the cake! This one is made with 2 layers of chocolate sponge cake brushed with rum, filled with rum Chantilly cream and dark Bing cherries. I cover the whole cake with rum Chantilly cream. I like this cake because I don't have to be perfect in frosting my cake since it will be covered in chocolates.
I have wrapped the cake in chocolate and topped it with dark chocolate shavings. This is my first time playing with chocolate wrap and chocolate shavings. As you can see, it's rather messy. I'll do better next time. ^_^
This recipe is from Joy of Baking. Click here for original recipe.
1/3 cup sifted cake flour
3 tablespoons cornstarch
4 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated white sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
Raspberry Whipped Cream:
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon granulated white sugar
1/2 cup lightly sweetened raspberry purée
1 - 12 ounce bags of frozen raspberries (unsweetened)
1/4 cup granulated white sugar, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)
For Sponge Cake:
- Preheat oven to 450 F. Butter, or spray with Pam, a 17 x 12 inch baking pan, line it with parchment paper, and then butter and flour the parchment paper.
- While eggs are still cold separate two of the eggs, placing the yolks in one large mixing bowl and the whites in another bowl. To the two yolks, add the additional yolk, and the two remaining eggs. Cover the two bowls with plastic wrap and allow the eggs to come to room temperature before using (about 30 minutes).
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together the sifted cake flour and cornstarch. Set aside.
- Once the eggs are at room temperature, place the egg yolks, along with 1/2 cup of granulated white sugar, in your electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on high speed for five minutes, or until thick, pale yellow, and fluffy.
- At this point beat in the vanilla extract.
- Sift half the flour mixture over the egg yolk mixture and fold in gently with a rubber spatula, just until the flour is incorporated. Sift the remaining flour mixture into the batter and fold in.
- In a clean mixing bowl, with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and continue beating until soft peaks form. Sprinkle in the remaining one tablespoon granulated white sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.
- Gently fold a little of the whites into the batter to lighten it, and then add the rest of the whites folding just until incorporated.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan, evenly spreading the cake batter with an offset spatula or knife.
- Bake for about 7 minutes or until golden brown. A toothpick inserted in the center will come out clean and the cake, when lightly pressed, will spring back.
- Immediately upon removing the cake from the oven invert the sponge cake onto a clean dish towel that has been sprinkled with confectioners sugar. Carefully remove the parchment paper, sprinkle lightly with confectioners sugar, and roll up the sponge, with the towel, while it is still hot and pliable. Place on a wire rack to cool.
For Raspberry Puree:
- Thaw the unsweetened frozen raspberries in a large fine meshed strainer suspended over a large bowl.
- Once the berries have completely thawed, force the juice from the berries by gently pressing the berries with the back of a large spoon. All that should remain in the strainer is the raspberry seeds.
- Throw away the raspberry seeds and, to the strained juice, stir in the lemon juice and 1/4 cup of white sugar (add more if needed).
- The puree can be stored in the refrigerator for a week or frozen for up to a year.
- In a large mixing bowl place the whipping cream, vanilla extract, and sugar and stir to combine. Cover and chill the bowl and beaters in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
- When chilled, beat the mixture until soft peaks form.
- Add the sweetened raspberry purée, a little at a time, and beat just until stiff peaks form when the beater is raised.
- Taste and fold in more sugar or puree, if needed.
- Remove about 1/2 cup of the raspberry whipped cream to use as garnish.
- Then unroll the sponge, spread with the remaining whipped cream filling, and reroll.
- Transfer to your serving platter. Decorate as desired.
- Cover, and chill in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.
- Just before serving, dust with confectioners sugar.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
I've tried variations of the cake: orange chiffon, pandan chiffon, and indo-style cheese chiffon.
The choux is the same one I used in here. I used durian pastry cream for the filling. In making the filling, I discovered that adding fresh durian in the pastry cream require more cornstarch in order to maintain the same texture as the filling I used to make regular cream puff.
I made these for my birthday along with a raspberry mousse cake and a tiramisu cake. I didn't have pictures of them though since I was too busy being in the spotlight that time. :p Just kidding. The truth is, Alvin was holding the camera and he was busy attending to our guests (being a VERY good host) that he forgot to take pictures of the cakes.
Oh well... at least I took pictures of them with my eyes. :)
When I tried to unmold the cups, some of them broke. I was sad about this but I also don't want to waste a good white chocolate. So, I ate the broken cups. (^_*)
I thought that the final products looked pretty cute. A petite dessert for a petite baker. :)
This choux is awesome because it has a crispy texture on the outside but soft in the inside. The best thing is that even though the choux is left outside or in the fridge for a few days, it's still pretty crispy on the outside. ^_^
This has been a favorite with my friends ever since!
For those of you who had the chance to try these cakes, I hope you enjoyed them. All your comments and feedbacks are really appreciated.
My baking frenzy started in May 2008 when I stumbled upon the Joy of Baking site that showed beautiful pictures of cakes, breads, and all kinds of baked goods. I started reading the recipes there and wondered if I can actually make something like that on my own. I started with a simple raspberry sponge cake recipe and it turns out pretty well. Stephanie wrote very clear instructions and explained the reasons behind the processes.
Here is a picture of the raspberry sponge cake I made.
Although this is not as pretty as Stephanie's, my friends liked the cake. This encourages me to explore further. And since I've been blessed through many baking blogs such as this and this, I thought I should also start my own blog.
I'm still very new at this and I still have a LOT to learn. I welcome your feedback and comments. Also, if you've tried some of my baking, let me know your feedback as well so that I can improve in the future. ^_^