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Saturday, July 16, 2011

A cake on trial

This was a birthday cake trial bake, but it did not achieve the oomph I wanted - under-whipped cream that was too runny and sponge cake that was flattened by my rough handling. Which puts the blueberries to waste, a pity.

But since this was a trial bake and the problem areas were identified, I hope to see great bakes coming to fruition. Very soon, hopefully.

Ingredients for Cake
( 23 cm diameter cake pan )

- Sponge Cake -
150g Eggs
100g Sugar 
90g Cake Flour
15g Unsalted Butter
1 tbsp Milk

- Soaking Syrup -
2 tbsp Sugar
3 tbsp Hot Water
1 tbsp Kirsch - a type of brandy made from fermented cherries. I used Meijiu.

- Toppings -
400ml Whipping Cream with 35% fat ( I use Phoon Huat whipping cream )
3 tbsp Sugar
100g blue berries
Powdered Sugar

Parchment Paper 23 cm diameter
Parchment Paper (side): 6 cm high
Cake Pan 23 cm

* Let the cake cool down in the cake pan as it will keep the sponge cake moist.

Prepare water bath with temperature of about 40 C
Whisk egg for 30 seconds and add sugar.
Whisk until pale and transfer mixing bowl over bath.
Continue whisking for about 3 minutes. Egg batter should be body temperature.
Remove mixing bowl from bath if batter gets too warm.
Whisk batter until batter forms ribbons.

Place the butter and 1 tsp of milk in a bowl in the bath. Remove bowl when butter melts.

Sift cake flour over batter.
Use a spatula and stir in flour, about 30 times in one direction. Take care not to break up foam.
Pour melted butter to the batter, using the spatula.
Stir in  butter gently in one direction, about 50 times.

When batter is glossy and smooth, pour batter into prepared pan.
Knock off air bubbles by tapping the pan on the worktop.
Bake for 160C for 23 minutes or until skewer pierced into the center of the cake comes out clean.

Invert the cake onto a parchment on a cooling tray . Since my pan is large, the cake is not as domed, so this step is eliminated.
When cooled, remove the cake pan and parchment.
Invert the cake right side up again.

Meanwhile , prepare soaking liquid.
Mix liquor, water and sugar until sugar is dissolved.

Prepare whipping cream. Whip cold cream over an ice bath with sugar until soft peaks form. 1 minutes on the electric whisk should do nicely.
Do not over whipped or else you get butter.
Chill until ready to use.

Make marking at the halfway point at the side of the cake. Use a serrated knife and saw across the cake. You get 2 halves of a cake.

Dab soaking liquid on both cut surface of the cake.
Apply whipping cream on the first cut surface that is brushed with liquor. Put fruits of your choice. Apply  some more cream.
Complete cake by assembling the second half of the cake over the cream.
Spread cream on the surface and sides of the cake.
Chill before serving.

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