Rainbow Cake – for a sweet birthday girl

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This is a long overdue post . A little bit of flashback before that. I had left my job due to personal reasons and was wondering how to utilise the spare time. And to almost all friends whom I  pestered with my ranting on what to do now, the answer was – ” Why don’t you start baking as a start up business? ”  I love to bake, but as a start up –  I’m apprehensive. And seeing the beautiful cakes flooding the net, I am even more petrified. But at some point you have to start … So slowly I am learning the technicalities of cake decorating, one step at a time…

The first “official order ” for cake was for our friend’s little daughter’s birthday.  And I decided to try the Rainbow Cake , which kid doesn’t like a rainbow 🙂 . Later I got worried as one cake won’t be enough for all the friends at the party and so made a Red Velvet Cake too. A selfish motive too – I  wanted people to try out my cakes and get honest feedbacks.

The birthday girl was quite thrilled to see the colourful cakes . My little happy client gave me a thank you note for bringing her the cake. How sweet … !! And as for the verdict from my friends,( or future would be clients 😀 ),  it was a thumbs up 🙂

 

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Let’s move on to the recipe.  This is the same recipe for the 1-2-3-4 cake I had blogged earlier. The batter was divided into 6 parts, added different colours to each layer , poured into individual pans and baked . I could bake 2 pans at the same time , but still baking all the layers will take time. Better bake the cakes a day in advance and then do the frosting the next day .

And here’s wishing all my readers a very vibrant and joyful New Year. May all your dreams come true…

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RAINBOW CAKE

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CAKE

  • Butter – 1 cup
  • Powdered Sugar – 2 cups
  • Flour – 3 cups
  • Egg – 4
  • Salt – ¼ tsp
  • Baking powder – 3tsp
  • Milk – 1 cup
  • Vanilla essence – 1 tsp

FOR SUGAR SYRUP

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water

FOR FROSTING

  • Whipping cream – 2 cups
  • Mascarpone cream – 250gm
  • Icing sugar – 3tbsp

METHOD

TO PREPARE THE CAKE PAN

Butter a cake pan and sprinkle about 1 tbsp of flour.  Gently toss the pan so that all sides are coated with flour.

TO MAKE THE CAKE

  1. Separate the egg yolks and whites.
  2. In  a deep bottomed bowl, beat the egg whites till they whip up. It will look like whipped cream. Keep it aside.
  3. In another deep bottomed bowl, beat butter using egg beater for 2 minutes.
  4. Add powdered sugar to the butter and beat well till it looks creamy.
  5. Add the egg yolks one by one and beat well for around 10 minutes
  6. In another bowl, sieve flour and baking powder.
  7. Mix one third of the flour mixture to the egg yolk mixture slowly using a wooden spoon.  Add one third cup of milk  and mix again. Repeat adding flour and milk alternately 2 more times.
  8. Add the vanilla essence .
  9. Add the egg white to the batter . Using a spoon slowly mix in the egg whites using the cut and fold method.
  10. Pour the batter into the pan . The batter should fill only till 2/3 rd of the pan or you can use 2 pans. Bake at 180 degree for around 30 minutes . You can test if the cake is done, by inserting a tooth pick . If the tooth pick comes out clean ( without any crumbs on it) , then the cake can be taken out of the oven .
  11. Let the cake cool to room temperature before applying icing

TO MAKE THE SYRUP:

Stir the sugar, water and essence in a small saucepan and bring to boil. Simmer till the sugar has dissolved, and cool completely.

TO ASSEMBLE :

  1.  When the cake is cooled, use a long serrated knife and cut off the top to make it straight. Slice the cake into 2 halves (if you have used a single cake pan).
  2. Pour the sugar syrup on both halves to make it soft.
  3.  On top of the first half spread the whipping cream or any filling. Place the second half , soaked side down, on top of the first.
  4. Coat the top and sides of the cake with cream to give a thin uniform coating.
  5. Keep in fridge till the icing sets. better to keep for atleast 3 to 4 hours.

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Perfect Party Cake

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After a one year hiatus, I am back into the blogging world.. My world has changed a lot in the  past one year… A new job  ,a handful of very special friends , the many beautiful moments  filled with fun and laughter I spent with them .. and the good byes to a few of them , which is always  the hardest part in a friendship. Though life separates us from our dear ones through distance, they will always hold a special place in our hearts which cannot be erased by  space or time..

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And last year I met a few of my dear friends after a gap of many years.. It was like we had met just the other day. Nothing seemed to change, the fun , the warmth, the special bonding..I have often noticed that food plays an important role during get togethers .. like how my best friend cooked biriyani especially for me  when I went to visit him.. or how my friend had particularly asked me to bake a vanilla cake for her when she would visit me for the first time after 15 yrs.. Food and friendship.. it sure does go hand in hand 🙂

On another note, the stats show that my blog has crossed  200,000 hits.. and this blog post is kind of celebration post too.. and a dedication post.. dedicated to all those wonderful friends, who stood by me during the low phases.. who pushed me to continue blogging when I had totally lost interest in it,  who had more faith in me than I had in myself.. whose motivating words kept me going.. Thank you guys, for being there for me..

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This was the vanilla cake I had made as per my friend’s request. This is a bit sturdy cake , with a slight lemon flavour.  To make it a bit more moist I added used sugar syrup . The recipe is pretty simple, not with many complicated steps. After the cake cooled down, I sliced it into layers and sandwiched with whipped cream, topped it with ganache. I must say this cake is quite a party pleaser. So go ahead and try it out..

PERFECT PARTY CAKE

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CAKE

(Recipe source- Baking from my home to yours)

  • All purpose flour – 2 cups
  • Cornflour – 4 tbsp
  • Baking powder – 1 tbsp
  • Salt – 1/2 tsp
  • Whole milk or buttermilk – 1 1/4 cup
  • Egg whites – 4 large
  • Sugar – 1 1/2 cups
  • Grated lemon zest – 2 tsp
  • Unsalted butter – 1 stick (113gms)

FOR THE SUGAR SYRUP

  • Sugar – 1 cup
  • Water – 1/4 cup

FOR THE WHIPPING CREAM 

  • Dreamwhip – 2 sachet
  • Cold Milk – 1 cup
  • Vanilla Essence – 1tsp

FOR THE GANACHE

  • Semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces – 8 ounces (227 grams)
  • Heavy whipping cream – 3/4 cup (180 ml)
  • Unsalted butter – 1 tablespoon (14 gram)

METHOD

FOR THE CAKE

  1. Sift together the flour, cornflour, baking powder and salt.
  2. Whisk together the milk and egg whites in a medium bowl
  3. In another bowl, put the sugar and lemon zest in a bowl and rub them together with fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant.
  4. Add the butter to the sugar and beat with egg beater ,till the butter and sugar are very light
  5. Add one third of the flour mixture, beating at medium speed
  6. Beat in half of the milk egg mixture .
  7. Repeat adding the flour and milk alternately till all the flour and milk is incorporated well.
  8. Pour the batter into the pan . The batter should fill only till 2/3 rd of the pan . Bake at 180 degree for around 30 to 35  minutes .
  9. To test whether the cake is done, insert a tooth pick. If the tooth pick comes out clean ( without any crumbs on it) , then the cake can be taken out of the oven .
  10. Let the cake cool to room temperature .

TO MAKE THE SUGAR SYRUP

Stir the sugar, water and essence in a small saucepan and bring to boil. Simmer till the sugar has dissolved, and cool completely.

TO MAKE THE WHIPPING CREAM

Mix the contents in 2 small sachets of Dreamwhip with 1 cup cold mix and a teaspoon of vanilla essence. Beat on high speed for 5-7 minutes till you get light fluffy peaks. This will give about 4 cups whipped cream.

TO MAKE THE GANACHE 

  1. Place the chopped chocolate in a medium sized stainless steel, or heatproof bowl. Set aside
  2.  Heat the cream and butter in a medium sized saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil.
  3. Immediately pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth.
  4. When Ganache has completely cooled, beat until soft and fluffy. Then spread the frosting on top of the cake.

HOW TO ASSEMBLE

  1. When the cake is cooled, use a long serrated knife and cut off the top to make it straight. Slice the cake horizontally into 2  or  3 equal parts..
  2. Pour one-third of the sugar syrup on the first cake layer .
  3.  Spread the whipping cream over the first layer.
  4. Take the second cake slice on top of the first layer . Pour one third of the sugar syrup and spread the whipped cream.
  5. Repeat the process with the third layer.
  6. Cover the whole cake with whipping cream.
  7. Pour the ganache over the top of the cake and spread it . Spread the ganache to the sides of the cake .

Foodgawker-5 blog

PINATA CAKE

Pinata Cake

As kids’ bdays neared in November  , I asked them what cake would they want me to bake this time…and both of them had the same reply.. They need a cake with lots of M n M s .. like the Kit Kat cake I had baked last year for their birthdays .

That’s when I remembered about the Pinata Cake picture Azna had sent me a a few months back. Hiding M n Ms inside a cake – the boys were surely going to love it !!! 🙂 The  Ultra Moist Chocolate Cake I had posted  before would be the cake in which the M n Ms would hide.

Now a days my  kids want to handle all the cake mixing part.  So I handed the measured ingredients to the birthday boy and he did all the mixing and stirring. But after baking the cake, when the icing part came, I didn’t allow the kids to enter the kitchen ..  couldn’t spoil the surprise element 🙂

I was eager to see  the surprise  on the boys ‘ faces  when the Mn M s fell out, but they were more busy .. Were the birthday boys and friends surprised when the cake was cut ? Well, not exactly.. the friends were more busy smearing the cream over the birthday boys  🙂 But on the plus side, the boys did enjoy the cake.. Yummy and awesome was the verdict from them !!! 🙂

Pinata Cake kids1

Pinata Cake

Here’s the method to hide the M n Ms inside the cake… 

Pinata Cake

Divide the cake into 3 equal parts. Keep one layer aside

Pinata Cake

Make a hole in the middle of the first layer using any cookie cutter .  Pour sugar syrup over the layer . Spread whipped cream over the layer.

Now make a hole over the second layer.  Place the second layer over the first layer. Pour sugar syrup over this and spread whipped cream.

Pinata Cake

Place the M nMs into the hole made by the 2 layers. Now place the layer that was kept aside over the 2 layers.  This 3rd layer will hide the M n Ms .

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PINATA CAKE

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CAKE

  • Powdered sugar – 2 cups
  • All-purpose flour – 1 3/4 cups
  • Cocoa powder – 3/4 cup
  • Baking powder – 1 1/2 teaspoon
  •  Baking soda – 1 1/2 teaspoons
  • Salt – 1 teaspoon
  •  Eggs – 2
  • Milk – 1 cup
  • Vegetable oil – 1/2 cup
  • Vanilla extract – 2 teaspoons
  • Boiling water – 1 cup
  • Whipping cream , for frosting

FOR THE SUGAR SYRUP

  • Sugar – 1/4 cup
  • Water – 1 cup

FOR THE WHIPPING CREAM 

  • Dreamwhip – 3 sachet
  • Cold Milk – 1 1/2 cup
  • Vanilla Essence – 1tsp

METHOD

TO MAKE THE CAKE:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3.  Add the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla, mix for 2 minutes on medium speed of mixer. Stir in the boiling water last.
  4. Batter will be thin. Pour evenly into the prepared pan.
  5. Bake 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven, until the cake tests done with a toothpick.
  6. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

TO MAKE THE SUGAR SYRUP:

Stir the sugar, water and essence in a small saucepan and bring to boil. Simmer till the sugar has dissolved, and cool completely.

TO MAKE THE WHIPPING CREAM:

Mix the contents in 3 small sachets of Dreamwhip with 1  1/2 cup cold mix and a teaspoon of vanilla essence. Beat on high speed for 5-7 minutes till you get light fluffy peaks. This will give about 5 cups whipped cream.

TO ASSEMBLE

  1. Divide the cake into 3 equal horizontal layers. Keep one layer aside
  2. Make a hole in the middle of the first layer using any cookie cutter .  Pour sugar syrup over the layer . Spread whipped cream over the layer.
  3. Now make a hole over the second layer.  Place the second layer over the first layer. Pour sugar syrup over this and spread whipped cream.
  4. Place the M nMs into the hole made by the 2 layers. Now place the layer that was kept aside over the 2 layers.  This 3rd layer will hide the M n Ms .
  5. Apply a thin layer of frosting over the cake (crumb coat) . Refrigerate for 1-2 hours
  6. Apply a thicker coating of the frosting to get a final smooth finish.

TREE CAKE (LAYERED CAKE OR BAUMKUCHEN)

Tree cake header

          It was our wedding anniversary 2 weeks back . For birthdays and anniversaries , baking cake has become kind of ritual at home.. This time I was searching for a special cake for the special day.. I  bookmarked a few and then thought to check this month’s Daring Bakers challenge  . This time the challenge was layered cake . Seeing all those layers I was all excited..so this was going to be the anniversary special cake … !!!

Tree cake slice2

Baumkuchen (Tree cake)  is a kind of layered cake. It is a traditional dessert in many countries throughout Europe and is also a popular snack and dessert in Japan. The characteristic rings that appear when sliced resemble tree rings, and give the cake its German name, Baumkuchen, which literally translates to “tree cake” – Source Wikipedia

Tree cake collageI had seen pictures of the layered cake on the net before and had always thought that all those layers were made by baking a cake and slicing the cake into thin layers. 🙂  As I am not much expert in slicing cakes evenly , I never tried to make them. Only after seeing the Daring Bakers challenge, did I realise that the layers are done while baking itself. Easier than slicing evenly was my first thought.

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 But after searching the net about the tree cake, I realised there was a glitch.. each layer should be baked and browned by 4 – 6 min. Some sources suggested using the broiler option in the oven, or using the upper gas flame if using cooking range oven . I initially tried to bake the first layer at 230 C in the cooking range oven . But after 4 minutes, the cake wasn’t showing any sign of browning. I kind of panicked a bit  , what if the layers are not going to come well defined.. .. I switched off the lower gas flame and turned on  the upper gas flame in the oven . after few minutes the batter started to get a light brown colour.  Relief !!! I kept the same setting for the rest of the cake , each layer took about 5 minutes to get browned.

Tree cake final

After every 3 layers spread an even layer of apricot jam. This will make the cake more soft and moist. The whole baking takes about 2 hrs and you need to be constantly checking the cake, to see that the layers are not over browned. For the final layers, the baking time will become lesser. The last 2 layers took only 3 min in my case. The process is not complicated, but you need to know your oven well !!!

Tree cake slice

The January 2014 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Francijn of “Koken in de Brouwerij”. She challenged us all to bake layered cakes in the tradition of Baumkuchen (tree cake) and Schichttorte (layered cake).

TREE CAKE

  • Servings: 10
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

TREE CAKE (Baumkuchen)

INGREDIENTS

For the Cake Batter

  • Large eggs (room temperature) – 6
  • Salt – a pinch
  • Granulated sugar – 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (120 gm)
  • Marzipan – 2/3 cup (150 gm)
  • Softened Unsalted Butter –  200 gm
  • Confectioner’s (Icing) sugar -3/4 cup (100 gm)
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) (1 package) (8 grams) vanilla sugar
  • All-purpose (plain) flour (sifted) – 2/3 cup (100 gm)
  • Apricot jam

For the Glaze ( I got the recipe from here )

  • Butter – 6 tbsp
  • Light corn syrup – 2 tbsp
  • Semisweet chocolate , chopped – 6oz

METHOD

  1. Preheat your oven to hot 450°F/230°C/gas mark 8 or turn on the upper gas flame in the oven.
  2. Grease your cake tin .
  3. Divide the eggs. Beat the egg whites with the salt until nearly stiff, add the sugar and beat until really stiff.
  4. Crumble finely the marzipan. Beat it with the softened butter, confectioner’s (icing) sugar until soft and creamy.
  5. Add the egg yolks one by one and beat well between each addition.
  6. Add the stiff egg whites and flour and gently fold it into the batter. Trying not to lose too much air.
  7. Smear 1 cup of the batter on the bottom of the pan, keep the sides of the pan clean, and bake for (about) 4 minutes in the oven, until it is cooked and brown.
  8. Take the pan out of the oven, smear the next portion of batter carefully over the first, and bake for another 4 minutes or until cooked and brown.
  9. After every 3 layers, spread an even layer of apricot jam.
  10. Repeat until all batter is used. (If you need to flatten a bubble insert a tooth pick or similar to deflate the bubble.)
  11. Let the cake cool down for a few minutes, take it out of the pan and let the cake cool completely on a wired rack.
  12. Heat the jam a little, pass it through a sieve. Cover the cake with the jam and let it cool.
  13. To make the glaze  heat  a small sauce pan on medium-low heat. Melt butter in pan then add chocolate and corn syrup. Stir continuously to keep from burning. Mix well
  14.  Pour chocolate glaze over cake and spread evenly with a spatula. Glaze will set as it cools.

Tree cake raspberry

Tree cake fb

Kitkat Cake Using Basic Sponge Cake

KITKAT CAKE WITH CHOCOLATE SPONGE CAKE

 I often get requests for a basic cake recipe, the beginner kind.  And I suggest the easy ones in the blog –  the 1-2-3-4 cake and the Ultramoist Chocolate Cake  . Few days back it was kids’ birthdays and I thought why not make a very simple cake so that even newbies in baking can do it easily..  (I often get remarks that cakes in my blog are bit complicated for beginners… )

I feel happy when people make an attempt to bake a cake for their loved ones, inspired by this blog.. More than the perfection of the cake, it’s the thought that matters..  This Kitkat cake doesn’t require much icing skills and it definitely will make the kids happy 🙂

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The cake is a very basic sponge cake recipe.. It calls for equal weight of butter, sugar and flour. The cake has a very light airy feel. To make the layered cake, I divided the cake into 3 layers.. You can make it into 2 also. Pour some sugar syrup to moisten up the cake. Cover the layers with whipped cream , top it with ganache and stick the kitkat bars around..  My kids join me in baking cakes now, they love to whip up the ingredients and decorate the cake. 🙂

So, without further ado, here are the step by step pics of making the cake. You can find the full recipe with ingredients and method at the end of the blog post.

TO MAKE THE CAKE :

Beat the butter using the handmixer for about 1 minute till it is soft

butter

Add powdered sugar to butter and beat on high speed till it becomes creamy.

Beat butter and sugar

butter and sugar paste

  Add the eggs one by one and beat well  on high  speed for around 10 minutes .

egg to the butter mixture

egg butter paste

In another bowl, sieve the flour,  baking powder and cocoa powder.

sift flour

Add one third of the flour, cocoa mixture with the egg mixture . Stir with a spoon till it is well blended.  Repeat this 2 more times till the all of the flour mixture is incorporated into the egg mixture.

mix flour with egg batter

You should have a smooth thick batter. If your batter is thick , add about 2 tbsp of milk and stir.

Now transfer the batter to the pan.  The batter should fill only till 2/3 rd of the pan. Bake at 180 degree for around 25  minutes . To test whether the cake is done, insert a tooth pick. If the tooth pick comes out clean ( without any crumbs on it) , then the cake can be taken out of the oven .

Let the cake cool to room temperature before applying icing.

TO MAKE THE SUGAR SYRUP:

Stir the sugar, water and essence in a small saucepan and bring to boil. Simmer till the sugar has dissolved, and cool completely.

TO MAKE THE WHIPPING CREAM:

I used  Dreamwhip powder. Mix the contents in 2 small sachets of dreamwhip with 1 cup cold mix and a teaspoon of vanilla essence. Beat on high speed for 5-7 minutes till you get light fluffy peaks. This will give about 4 cups whipped cream.

whipped cream

TO MAKE THE GANACHE :

Place the chopped chocolate in a medium sized stainless steel, or heatproof bowl. Set aside

chocolate chips

 Heat the cream and butter in a medium sized saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil.

melt butter and cream for ganache

Immediately pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth.

pour melted cream over chocolate

When Ganache has completely cooled, beat until soft and fluffy. Then spread the frosting on top of the cake.

chocolate ganache 

HOW TO ASSEMBLE :

When the cake is cooled, use a long serrated knife and cut off the top to make it straight. Slice the cake horizontally into 2  or  3 equal parts..

Slice cake hoizontally

Pour one-third of the sugar syrup on the first cake layer .

Sugar Syrup

 Spread the whipping cream over the first layer.

Spread whipped cream over cake

cake layer with whipped cream

Take the second cake slice on top of the first layer . Pour one third of the sugar syrup and spread the whipped cream.

Repeat the process with the third layer.

Cover the whole cake with whipping cream.

Cake covered with whipped cream

Pour the ganache over the top of the cake and spread it . Spread the ganache to the sides of the cake .

Spread ganache

Stick Kit Kat’s all the way around the cake – they will just stick to the frosting. Pour M&M’s on the top to give the finishing touch.

Spread ganache over cake

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I got the recipe for the basic sponge cake from here 

KIT KAT CAKE USING BASIC CHOCOLATE SPONGE CAKE

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CAKE :

  • Unsalted butter, softed, not melted – 170g
  • Sugar – 170g
  • All purpose flour – 115g
  • Cocoa powder – 55g
  • Baking powder – 1tsp
  • Large Eggs – 3
  • Milk –  2 tbsp (optional)
  • pinch of salt

FOR THE SUGAR SYRUP :

  • Sugar – 1/4 cup
  • Water – 1 cup

FOR THE WHIPPING CREAM :

  • Dreamwhip – 2 sachet
  • Cold Milk – 1 cup
  • Vanilla Essence – 1tsp

FOR THE GANACHE :

  • Semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces – 8 ounces (227 grams)
  • Heavy whipping cream – 3/4 cup (180 ml)
  • Unsalted butter – 1 tablespoon (14 gram)

METHOD

TO PREPARE THE CAKE PAN :

Butter a cake pan and sprinkle about 1 tbsp of flour.  Gently toss the pan so that all sides are coated with flour.

TO MAKE THE CAKE :

  1. Powder the sugar finely.
  2. Beat the butter using the handmixer for about 1 minute till it is soft.
  3. Add powdered sugar to butter and beat on high speed till it becomes creamy.
  4. Add the eggs one by one and beat well  on high  speed for around 10 minutes .
  5. In another bowl, sieve the flour,  baking powder and cocoa powder.
  6. Add one third of the flour, cocoa mixture with the egg mixture . Stir with a spoon till it is well blended.  Repeat this 2 more times till the all of the flour mixture is incorporated into the egg mixture.
  7. You should have a smooth thick batter. If your batter is thick , add about 2 tbsp of milk and stir.
  8. Pour the batter into the pan . The batter should fill only till 2/3 rd of the pan . Bake at 180 degree for around 25  minutes .
  9. To test whether the cake is done, insert a tooth pick. If the tooth pick comes out clean ( without any crumbs on it) , then the cake can be taken out of the oven .
  10. Let the cake cool to room temperature before applying icing.

TO MAKE THE SUGAR SYRUP:

Stir the sugar, water and essence in a small saucepan and bring to boil. Simmer till the sugar has dissolved, and cool completely.

TO MAKE THE WHIPPING CREAM:

Mix the contents in 2 small sachets of Dreamwhip with 1 cup cold mix and a teaspoon of vanilla essence. Beat on high speed for 5-7 minutes till you get light fluffy peaks. This will give about 4 cups whipped cream.

TO MAKE THE GANACHE :

  1. Place the chopped chocolate in a medium sized stainless steel, or heatproof bowl. Set aside
  2.  Heat the cream and butter in a medium sized saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil.
  3. Immediately pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth.
  4. When Ganache has completely cooled, beat until soft and fluffy. Then spread the frosting on top of the cake.

HOW TO ASSEMBLE :

  1. When the cake is cooled, use a long serrated knife and cut off the top to make it straight. Slice the cake horizontally into 2  or  3 equal parts..
  2. Pour one-third of the sugar syrup on the first cake layer .
  3.  Spread the whipping cream over the first layer.
  4. Take the second cake slice on top of the first layer . Pour one third of the sugar syrup and spread the whipped cream.
  5. Repeat the process with the third layer.
  6. Cover the whole cake with whipping cream.
  7. Pour the ganache over the top of the cake and spread it . Spread the ganache to the sides of the cake .
  8. Stick Kit Kat’s all the way around the cake – they will just stick to the frosting. Pour M&M’s on the top to give the finishing touch.
  9. Refrigerate for 2 hours so that the kitkat gets glued to the cake.

Note :

  •  Eggs, butter and milk should be at room temperature
  •  Mix in flour and milk to the batter using a wooden spoon, do not use beater.

kitkat cake - IMG_0930

1-2-3-4 Cake

1 2 3 4 Cake

Wishing You all a Happy New Year ! May this year bring you happiness and peace !!

Last month,  my friend Shemeem asked me an easy cake recipe , as she was planning for a surprise birthday party for her nephew.. She said all recipes in my blog seem difficult for newbies , too much complicated !! Now, I had never thought of that.. a cake recipe from a beginner’s point of view..

I gave her the recipe for 1 2 3 4 cake – which is a favourite in the family  . I had made this for my hubby’s birthday ..  The cake  tastes good even without the icing.. Actually, this is a very frequent cake in my kitchen, perfect for an afternoon tea.

1 2 3 4 Cake

I had been wanting to try the pastel swirl effect for sometime.. hmm.. not quite perfect..  I think I need bit more practice..

Here’s Shemeem’s version  .. Loved the smurf icing.. Should try that out some day!!

smurf

The recipe is quite simple and the cake never fails !! The cake got its name from the ingredients’ quantity…

1-2-3-4 Cake

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CAKE

  • Butter – 1 cup
  • Powdered Sugar – 2 cups
  • Flour – 3 cups
  • Egg – 4
  • Salt – ¼ tsp
  • Baking powder – 3tsp
  • Milk – 1cup
  • Vanilla essence – 1 tsp
  • Orange rind – 1 tsp

FOR SUGAR SYRUP

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp orange essence

FOR FROSTING

  • Whipping cream – 2 cups

METHOD

TO PREPARE THE CAKE PAN

Butter a cake pan and sprinkle about 1 tbsp of flour.  Gently toss the pan so that all sides are coated with flour.

Note :

  •  Eggs, butter and milk should be at room temperature
  •  The bowls used for mixing and the egg beater should be dry.
  •  Mix in flour and milk to the batter using a wooden spoon, do not use beater.

TO MAKE THE CAKE

  1. Separate the egg yolks and whites.. be careful that the whites do not have even a tinge of yolk in it. ( There is a video at the end of the post, I found on You Tube , which shows how to separate the yolks and whites)
  2. In  a deep bottomed bowl, beat the egg whites till they whip up. It will look like whipped cream. Keep it aside.
  3. In another deep bottomed bowl, beat butter using egg beater for 2 minutes.
  4. Add powdered sugar to the butter and beat well till it looks creamy.
  5. Add the egg yolks one by one and beat well for around 10 minutes
  6. In another bowl, sieve flour and baking powder.
  7. Mix one third of the flour mixture to the egg yolk mixture slowly using a wooden spoon.  Add one third cup of milk  and mix again. Repeat adding flour and milk alternately 2 more times.
  8. Add the vanilla essence and orange rind
  9. Add the egg white to the batter . Using a spoon slowly mix in the egg whites using the cut and fold method. (Video at the end of the post)
  10. Pour the batter into the pan . The batter should fill only till 2/3 rd of the pan or you can use 2 pans. Bake at 180 degree for around 30 minutes . You can test if the cake is done, by inserting a tooth pick . If the tooth pick comes out clean ( without any crumbs on it) , then the cake can be taken out of the oven .
  11. Let the cake cool to room temperature before applying icing

TO MAKE THE SYRUP:

Stir the sugar, water and essence in a small saucepan and bring to boil. Simmer till the sugar has dissolved, and cool completely.

TO ASSEMBLE :

  1.  When the cake is cooled, use a long serrated knife and cut off the top to make it straight. Slice the cake into 2 halves (if you have used a single cake pan).
  2. Pour the sugar syrup on both halves to make it soft.
  3.  On top of the first half spread the whipping cream or any filling. Place the second half , soaked side down, on top of the first.
  4. Coat the top and sides of the cake with cream to give a thin uniform coating.
  5. Keep in fridge till the icing sets. better to keep for atleast 3 to 4 hours.
  6. Apply a thicker coating of cream on top and sides and decorate with chocolate curls or sprinkles.

1 2 3 4 cake

Few links for details…

How to separate and fold egg whites   –
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Yie5V37E1w

How to beat egg whites
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EpicWVE76l0

1 2 3 4 cake

Devil’s Food Cake

Friends often tell me , I have more posts of cakes in my blog.. And I had decided to reduce the cake posts in future… Hmm but fate had other plans it seems.. This again is a cake post .. and I have my excuse too. It was my nephew’s 2nd birthday 2 weeks back and my sister in law and family were  visiting us on that  day.. Now how can I resist the temptation of baking a special cake for my dear nephew???

The kids too were all excited and got busy decorating the room with balloons and setting the table before the birthday boy arrived… I decided to make a chocolate cake as kids would love it.. and this is a very chocolatey cake – Devil’s Food Cake.. I wonder how the cake got this name? This is really a super moist chocolate cake and I strongly feel the name should be changed 🙂

I found this recipe from Nigella Lawson’s site and have prepared this few times before.. Couldn’t click the snaps then.. this time too I was in a but hurry, so the photos are ,well ,not so perfect..

Coming back to the celebrations, the birthday boy was super excited 🙂 .. He was amazed to see all the  balloons, candles, cakes … Smiling happily as everyone sang the birthday song for him .. My sister in law told me that he still fondly says of his Abudhabi Bday Celebration 🙂

What I loved about the cake is its luscious frosting.. Though while preparing the frosting would appear runny, allowing it to settle for an hour will give it the right consisitency . Last time I made this cake, I had piped chocolate rosettes with the frosting… This time, topped the frosting with some chocolates to surprise the kids..

Here’s the recipe for all you chocolate lovers..

Recipe Source – Nigella Lawson

INGREDIENTS

For the cake

  • 50g best-quality cocoa powder, sifted
  • 100g dark muscovado sugar
  • 250ml boiling water
  • 125g soft unsalted butter, plus some for greasing
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 225g plain flour
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs

For the frosting:

  • 125ml water
  • 30g dark muscovado sugar
  • 175g unsalted butter cubed
  • 300g best-quality dark chocolate finely chopped

Pan required

  • 2 x 20cm sandwich tins

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.
  2. Line the bottoms of both sandwich tins with baking parchment and butter the sides.
  3. Put the cocoa and 100g dark muscovado sugar into a bowl with a bit of space to spare, and pour in the boiling water. Whisk to mix, then set aside.
  4. Mix the flour, baking powder and bicarb together in another bowl.
  5. Cream the butter and caster sugar together, beating well until pale and fluffy.
  6. Add eggs one by one to the creamed butter and sugar  mixing well.
  7. Keep mixing and incorporate the rest of the dried ingredients for the cake, then finally mix and fold in the cocoa mixture.
  8. Divide this fabulously chocolatey batter between the 2 prepared tins and put in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  9. Take the tins out and leave them on a wire rack for 5–10 minutes, before turning the cakes out to cool.
  10. But as soon as the cakes are in the oven, get started on your frosting: put the water, 30g muscovado sugar and 175g butter in a pan over a low heat to melt.
  11. When this mixture begins to bubble, take the pan off the heat and add the chopped chocolate, swirling the pan so that all the chocolate is hit with heat, then leave for a minute to melt before whisking till smooth and glossy.
  12. Leave for about 1 hour, whisking now and again – when you’re passing the pan – by which time the cakes will be cooled, and ready for the frosting.
  13. Set one of the cooled cakes, with its top side down, on a cake stand or plate, and spread with about a third of the frosting, then top that with the second cake, regular way up, and spread the remaining frosting over the top and sides, swirling away with your spatula.

Sending this to Love and Chocolate Fest event at My Culinary Trial Room

and Dish for Loved Ones by Sravs Culinary Concepts

Lets Cook for Valentines event by simply.food

Orange And Almond Cake – Celebrating a year of blogging !!!

Back to blogging after a big gap.. and I have my excuse too 🙂 … Well, I was on vacation at my hometown… Had a hectic schedule, but enjoyed each moment of it, hanging out with my dear ones … My little nephews and nieces are growing up fast.. and they are quite a bunchful too, like different flowers in a garden –  the emotional one, naughty ones,  girly ones and the quiet ones..  Miss you dears…

Was really looking forward for the meeting my school friends had planned .. to meet our teacher, mentor, guide – Father Mathew Vithuvettickal..  am so happy that I could make it for the get together… that was the moment for which I was looking for since long time – I was meeting my friends after a long gap of 18 years!!!  After all these years, we could feel the same camaraderie.. It was like travelling back to our school days, recollecting the  fun times we had .. And it was a blessing that I could meet my favourite teacher after so long !!!

And yes, the other main thing is my blog is turning a year old.. I have to thank all my dear friends for their continuous love and support.. Your feedback means a lot to me.. and thank you for trying out so many of my recipes and sharing the result..So A Big Thanks guys, for all your love.. it is appreciated more than you will ever know.. Keep it coming.. And love and thanks to my dear sis in law , Zareena, for being the unofficial proof reader of my blog 🙂

For this blog anniversary, decided to deviate from my comfort zone of chocolate and coffee cakes… and finalised on an orange and almond cake from one of the recipe books. The cake batter uses almond flour and semolina … And the cake is soaked with orange flavoured sugar syrup.. On retrospect, I could have reduced the quantity of semolina a little more.. and hubby suggested that the sweetness could have been brought down a bit.. But apart from that, this is wonderfully moist cake, with the citrus flavour bursting in…. So here goes the recipe..

INGREDIENTS

  • Orange – 1
  • Butter, softened – 115gm
  • Powdered sugar – 115 gm
  • Eggs – 2
  • Semolina – 3/4 cup (The original recipe uses 1 cup)
  • Ground Almonds -1 cup
  • Baking powder – 1 1/2 tsp
  • Icing sugar – for dusting

For the syrup

  • Orange juice – 1 cup
  • Superfine sugar –  100gm ( You can reduce the quantity of sugar, depending on the sweetness of orange)
  • Cardamom pods, crushed – 3

Method

  1. Grate the rind from the orange, reserving some for the decoration and squeeze the juice from one half.
  2. Place the butter, orange rind, and sugar in a bowl and beat together until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the semolina, ground almonds and baking powder , then fold into the creamed mixture with the orange juice.
  4. Spoon the batter into a greased cake tin and bake at 180 degree for 30 – 40 minutes or a tester comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
  5. To make the syrup , place the orange juice, sugar and cardamom pods in the pan over low heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to a boil and let it simmer for 4 minutes or until syrupy. Strain and keep aside.
  6. Turn the cake out into a deep serving dish. Using a skewer make holes over the surface of the warm cake. Spoon the syrup over the cake and let stand for 30 minutes.
  7. Dust the cake with confectioner’s sugar and serve.

Zebra Cake For A Birthday

Kids’ birthdays fall within a gap of 5 days. I wanted to bake a birthday cake for the elder one, but he rejected the proposal as he wanted Harry Potter cake from bakery.. Disheartened I focused on the younger one’s birthday cake (atleast he wasn’t old enough to turn down  mamma’s cake … ) I was planning to make a fondant cake for quite some time ( inspired by Dina’s fondant cakes and Dima’s blogpost on how to cover cake with fondant ) … I decided to make a zebra cake as it would make hubby  (who doesn’t like chocolate) eat some …

The cake came out well… But in retrospect I could have doubled the quantity to make the cake bigger.. I applied a coating of whipped cream and kept the cake in fridge for about an hour.

As it was my first attempt on fondant , I had planned to keep it simple… Light blue cake with orange polka dots.. I was okay with the result, but when I showed it to my elder son, his reply was “Oh this is a baby cake!!! Doesn’t look good!!!”.. hmphhhh !!! I pulled out all the orange circles, rolled each into small roses and fixed them back.. Though not quite impressed , the kid was okay with the final result..

But the biggest disappointment came when both kids didn’t like the taste of fondant 😦 .. They wanted the cake, but  without the icing please !!! Huh…  I think I should stick back to old whipped cream frosting for sometime …

The recipe for the cake is the same that I used in Checkerboard Cake…  Only the method is different.

Ingredients

  • Butter – 1 cup
  • Granulated Sugar – 2 cups
  • Eggs, yolk and white separated – 4
  • Flour – 3 cups
  • Baking powder – 4 tsp
  • Salt – ¾ tsp
  • Milk – 1 1/2 cup
  • Cocoa – 4 tbsp
  • Boiling water – 5tbsp
  • Baking soda – 1/8 tsp
  • Almond essence – ¼ tsp
  • Vanilla essence – 1 tsp

Method

  1. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Powder the sugar.
  2. Using an electric beater,  cream the butter and sugar. Add eggs one at a time, beating after adding each.
  3. Add 1/2 of the flour and mix it into the batter using your hand. Add ½ cup milk and mix again. Repeat the process with the remaining flour and milk. Add vanilla essence.
  4. Add cocoa powder and baking soda to boiling water and mix well.
  5. Divide the batter into 2  halves… To one part add cocoa mixture.
  6. Pour a big ladle of plain batter to the middle of the prepared cake tin.  Then pour a big ladle of cocoa batter into center of the plain batter. Again pour a ladle of plain batter to the center of the cocoa batter. Repeat this alternately so that you get concentric circles of plain batter and the cocoa batter.  (The batter will spread out evenly by itself…)
  7. Bake in a preheated oven at 180C  till a tester comes out clean (around 30 min)

Sending this to Bakefest hosted by Vardhini at Zesty Palette

 

Happy Birthday FIA ♥♥♥ – Ultra Moist Chocolate Cake to celebrate…

Celebrating two birthdays with one birthday cake …. It was my little cousin Sameera’s birthday a few days back and had made the cake as a surprise treat for her.

And posting this today to celebrate as FIA turns one year old… FIA, or Famished in Arabia, is a community of  bloggers from UAE who share their passion for food. The brain child of Arva of I live in a frying pan and Sally of My Custard Pie, this group now has 56 wonderfully gifted bloggers (and the number continues to increase..) .

Love to be part of this group – the discussions, the delectable dishes posted everyday and the amazing photography. Here’s to many more years of food, fun and friendship..♥♥♥

Okay, back to the cake…Made a soft moist chocolate cake and frosted with whipping cream. It’s really easy to whip it up, you can make the whole thing in one bowl.  Using vegetable oil instead of butter has its advantages – no time wasted to beat butter with sugar,plus the oil makes the cake really moist.

Sorry, couldn’t get the snaps of the cake slice. In midst of the birthday celebration, forgot that part  😦 .

Ingredients

  • Powdered sugar – 2 cups
  • All-purpose flour – 1 3/4 cups
  • Cocoa powder – 3/4 cup
  • Baking powder – 1 1/2 teaspoon
  •  Baking soda – 1 1/2 teaspoons
  • Salt – 1 teaspoon
  •  Eggs – 2
  • Milk – 1 cup
  • Vegetable oil – 1/2 cup
  • Vanilla extract – 2 teaspoons
  • Boiling water – 1 cup
  • Whipping cream , for frosting

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3.  Add the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla, mix for 2 minutes on medium speed of mixer. Stir in the boiling water last.
  4. Batter will be thin. Pour evenly into the prepared pan.
  5. Bake 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven, until the cake tests done with a toothpick.
  6. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

For the frosting

  1. Divide the cake into 3 equal horizontal layers
  2. Sandwich the  layers with the desired frosting ( I used whipping cream with 1 tsp of coffee powder added).
  3. Apply a thin layer of frosting over the cake (crumb coat) . Refrigerate for 1-2 hours
  4. Apply a thicker coating of the frosting to get a final smooth finish.


Sending this to Bookmarked Recipes Every Tuesday By Aipi and Priya

and to Anyone Can Cook Series by Ayeesha

and to Only Baked Event hosted by Harini of Tamalapaku and Pari of Foodelicious

Checkerboard Cake – With love ♥



This post is specially for my dear brother , sister in law and my 2 beautiful nieces who are moving to Qatar next week.. My bro has been solid support during the initial stages of this blog –  patiently taking snaps from different angles for the blog and giving his suggestion to improve the design and layout… and now a days showers his lavish compliments on the snaps I take  🙂 .. Looking back , its not just the blog, but he has stood as a support and guidance for me at every point of life.


My sister in law pulls my leg asking why I’ve never mentioned her recipes in this blog…  She’s an excellent cook  and more than that a truly wonderful sister, a confidant and one who has always lend her shoulder during the not so good phases of my life..  Naufal ikka and Shahana itha , here’s wishing you all the very best in all your future endeavours… ♥ ♥ ♥



Back to the cake…After seeing the lovely checkerboard cakes in Ria’s blog wanted to make my own :).. Had always fancied making them, but gave up as I thought it could be done only using checkerboard pans… I haven’t seen any checkerboard pans in the local shops.. But Ria’s idea was an inspiration.. No need for any special pans, 2 circular lids would do the trick 🙂 (The method is illustrated at the bottom of the post)



This recipe  is from my mother in law.. Infact this is her recipe for the marble cake (which has come out perfect everytime I’ve made it.. ) I’ve used the same recipe, only the effect is different.. instead of marble, checkerboard…


Ingredients

  • Butter – 1 cup
  • Granulated Sugar – 2 cups
  • Eggs, yolk and white separated – 4
  • Flour – 3 cups
  • Baking powder – 4 tsp
  • Salt – ¾ tsp
  • Milk – 1 cup
  • Cocoa – 4 tbsp
  • Boiling water – 5tbsp
  • Baking soda – 1/8 tsp
  • Almond essence – ¼ tsp
  • Vanilla essence – 1 tsp


Method

  1. Beat the egg whites using an electric beater till peaks are formed.
  2. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt
  3. Using an electric beater cream the butter and sugar. Add egg yolks one at a time, beating after adding each.
  4. Add 1/2 of the flour and mix it into the batter using your hand. Add ½ cup milk and mix again. Repeat the process with the remaining flour and milk.
  5. Incorporate the beaten egg white in cut and fold method.. (Do not mix too much ).. Add vanilla essence.
  6. Add cocoa powder and baking soda to boiling water and mix well
  7. Divide the batter into 2 half.. To one part add cocoa mixture.
  8. Pour the vanilla batter in a cake pan and chocolate batter to another pan.
  9. Bake in a preheated oven at 180C  till a tester comes out clean (around 30 min ).


To make the checkerboard pattern…


You will have a vanilla cake and a chocolate cake.


Make 2 vertical cuts into the cake as illustrated, so that you get 3 rings for each cake , ring A, B and C for chocolate cake and rings D, E and F for vanilla cake. (As mentioned earlier you can use 2 circular lids or cookie cutters to cut the cakes)

Swap the middle rings of both the cakes ie, transfer ring B to the vanilla cake and ring E to the chocolate cake. Coat the inside of the cake rings with whipping cream so that they stick to each other.

Now spread some whipping cream over the first cake and place the second above it.  Cover with whipping cream and decorate…

P.S : Sending this as entry for Crazy for Cakes Event hosted by Priya

and Food Palette Series – Brown hosted by Torviewtoronto

 

Chocolate Genoise for Valentine’s Day


Another  get together during weekend at our friend’s home..  Had a great time – friends pulling each other’s legs, delicious home-made sea food dishes, the trip to the top of Jebel Hafeet mountain, the freezing cold there which reminded us of our excursion to Ooty.. truly a memorable weekend..


I had decided to make 2 cakes  for the get together.. chose the Chocolate genoise with chocolate mousse filling …. I had planned to make the cakes the day before and the filling and frosting the next day. But as I wasn’t feeling well, had to make the cakes and the frosting on the same day..  A mishap that occurred while making the first cake was that the recipe says to add 4 large eggs.. I added 4 eggs but during the baking I felt that the cake was not rising well. Well,  the mistake I did was the eggs were of medium size.. So if the recipe calls for large eggs, it should be LARGE 🙂 .. For the second cake I used the right size eggs and the cake was soft as sponge.. hmm now to rectify the first one, I again made the cake batter with half the measurements and baked it ..decided to  sandwich it later with the first one(that was smaller ) so that it was of reasonable size..  phew…



For the filling I made the chocolate mousse as in the recipe..  After sandwiching the first cake with the mousse , there was some more left..  as time was running out , I didn’t want to make another batch of the mousse for the second cake, so decided to mix the left over quantity with whipped cream and strawberry puree as the filling … The chocolate, cream and strawberry flavours blended really well..  yummy….

Then came the frosting part.. Made another batch of whipping cream and frosted both the cake tops and sides with them..  Once more I attempted  the scrolls for the sides for one of the cakes .. this time the scrolls got attached to the cake , but I think I pulled away the parchment paper too soon.. hopefully next time I will be more successful 🙂 .. For the second cake I attached almond slivers on the sides.. Decorated the top with chocolate scrawls, chocolate shavings and cherries. The cakes were done!!!  I liked the final look of the cakes  and decided this will be my valentine’s day post  🙂



The whole process was hectic as I didn’t prepare the cakes the day before.. When you make the cake its always better to do the cake one day and the frosting the next. And don’t forget the eggs’ size 🙂

Recipe Source

Joy of baking

Chocolate Genoise Recipe

  • Hot melted unsalted butter – 3 tablespoons (42 grams)
  • Pure vanilla extract  – 1 teaspoon
  • Cake flour – 1/2 cup (65 grams) { I used all purpose flour , the quantity was 1 tablespoon removed from ½ cup of  all purpose flour)
  • Unsweetened regular or Dutch-processed cocoa powder – 1/3 cup (30 grams)
  • Large eggs – 4
  • Granulated white sugar – 2/3 cup (135 grams) g

Note:  When warming the eggs and sugar, whisk constantly to ensure the the eggs do not overheat and curdle.

Orange Flavored Soaking Syrup

  • Freshly squeezed orange juice – 1/4 cup (60 ml)
  • Grand Marnier (optional) – 1 tablespoon

Chocolate Mousse

  • Bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, cut into small pieces – 6 ounces (175 grams)
  • Heavy whipping cream – 1 1/2 cups (360 ml)
  • Egg yolks  – 3 large
  • Granulated white sugar – 1/3 cup (66 grams)
  • Water – 1/4 cup (60 ml)

Strawberry Filling

  • Strawberries – 10
  • Sugar – ½ cup
  • Whipping cream – 1 cup

Garnish

Chocolate shavings, cherries and almond slivers


Chocolate Genoise:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C). Butter, or spray with a vegetable spray, a 9 inch (23 cm) round cake pan and then line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the melted unsalted butter with the vanilla extract.  Keep this mixture warm.  If needed, re-warm for a few seconds just before using.
  3. In a medium bowl sift together the flour and cocoa powder.  Set aside.
  4. In a large heatproof bowl whisk together the eggs and sugar.
  5. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water.
  6. Whisking constantly, heat the eggs and sugar until lukewarm to the touch (this will take approximately 5 minutes depending on the temperature of the eggs and the simmering water).
  7. Remove from heat and transfer the egg mixture to the bowl of your electric mixer.
  8. Beat on high speed until the egg mixture has cooled, tripled in volume, and looks like softly whipped cream.  This will take approximately 5 minutes and the batter is beaten sufficiently when the batter falls back into the bowl in a ribbon-like pattern.
  9. Then sift about one-third of the flour mixture over the whipped eggs and fold in using a large rubber spatula or whisk.  Fold in half of the remaining flour, and then fold in the rest.  Do not over mix or you will deflate the batter.
  10. Then take about 1 cup of the batter and fold it into the hot butter mixture with a small spatula.  (This will lighten the butter mixture and make it easier to incorporate into the egg batter without deflating it.)  When completely combined, use a spatula to fold the butter mixture completely into the rest of the egg batter.  Pour the batter into your prepared pan, smoothing the top.
  11. Bake until the cake shrinks slightly from the edges of the pan and the top springs back when lightly pressed (about 20-25 minutes). Cool on a metal rack. When the cake has cooled completely, run a small knife or spatula around the edges to release the cake.

The genoise will keep well-wrapped two days in the refrigerator or else three months frozen.

Chocolate Mousse

  1. In a medium-sized stainless steel bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, melt the chocolate.  Set aside but keep the bowl over the warm water so the chocolate will stay slightly warm.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), whip the heavy cream until soft peaks form.  Refrigerate, covered, until needed.
  3. Place the egg yolks in a large heatproof bowl and set aside.
  4. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and water and bring to a boil.  Boil until the sugar dissolves, a minute or two.  This produces a sugar syrup.
  5. Then, whisking constantly, pour the boiling syrup over the egg yolks.  Set the bowl over a pan of simmering water and whisk constantly (can use a hand mixer on low speed) until the mixture is thick and light in color.  This mixture should be hot to the touch.  (About 10 minutes)
  6. Remove the bowl from the heat and, working quickly, scrape the egg mixture into a clean large bowl of your electric mixer.  On medium speed (or with a hand mixer) beat until the volume has doubled and the bottom of the bowl is completely cool to the touch.
  7. Turn speed to low, and beat in the warm melted chocolate until well combined.
  8. Fold in half the reserved whipped cream and then fold in the remaining cream.  The mixture should resemble softly whipped cream.  This can be used immediately or refrigerated, covered, until needed.  If the mixture seems a little runny, the chocolate may have been too warm, but after refrigerating for an hour or so, it will firm up.

Strawberry Filling

  1. Slice the strawberries and mix with sugar and keep aside for 20 minutes.
  2. In a pan, heat the strawberries  and sugar on medium flame for 15 minutes till the mixture thickens. Remove from flame and when the mixture cools down, mash it .
  3. Mix the puree with 1 cup of whipping cream and half quantity of the chocolate mousse mixture

Assemble

  1. Split the genoise in half.  Place the top layer of the genoise, cut side up, onto your serving platter.
  2. In a small cup mix the orange juice with the Grand Marnier and, using a pastry brush, soak the cake with the syrup.
  3. Next, evenly spread the chocolate mousse over the cake.
  4. Top with the second layer of genoise.
  5. Cover and refrigerate a few hours (preferably overnight) or until the chocolate mousse is firm.
  6. When ready to serve dust the top of the genoise with powdered sugar (can use a stencil or doily for a decorative effect) and garnish.

Makes one – 9 inch (23 cm) Genoise.  Serves 8 – 10 people.

P.S :Sending this as an entry to Delicious Desserts event hosted by What’s Cooking today!!

and to Priya’s BEST ‘WESTERN’ DESSERT EVENT

 

Chocolate Banana Cake

 

Life takes strange twists and turns… When I mentioned to my friend that I had started a food blog his first reaction was “WHAT!!! Cooking and YOU???” Well , I think that would be the normal reaction of anyone who knew me 10 years back .. Cooking and me? No way :)..   But life unfolds itself in ways unknown to us..  Somewhere down the lane I got interested in cooking and experimenting with food … Now here I am with my own food blog.. And yes, my friend was impressed after seeing my blog 🙂 .. (Another feedback now I get from my relatives and friends when they see the blog is “Did YOU make all these?” .. Somehow the old stigma is still attached to me.. 🙂 )

 

Well coming back to food, I tried this Chocolate Banana Cake … and it was exceptionally moist and  soft in texture… And it is absolutely easy to cook up this treat, the batter can be prepared in 15 minutes.. As the recipe uses oil instead of butter, all you have to do is mix the oil, eggs, water and milk with the mashed bananas. Mix in the dry  ingredients, and that’s it… The batter will be really thin so the baking time will take around 45 minutes… For all chocolate lovers , this cake is a must try…

 

Recipe Source

Joy of baking

Ingredients

  • Granulated white sugar – 2 cups (400 grams)
  • All-purpose flour – 1 3/4 cups (245 grams)
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder (regular or Dutch-processed) – 3/4 cup (75 grams)
  • Baking powder -1 1/2 tsp
  • Baking soda – 1 1/2 tsp
  • Salt – 1/2 teaspoon
  • large eggs – 2
  • Mashed ripe bananas (about 2 medium sized bananas) – 1 cup
  • Warm water – 1 cup (240 ml)
  • Milk-1/2 cup (120 ml)
  • Corn, safflower or canola oil – 1/2 cup (120 ml)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Chocolate Ganache Frosting:

  • Semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces – 8 ounces (227 grams)
  • Heavy whipping cream – 3/4 cup (180 ml)
  • Unsalted butter – 1 tablespoon (14 gram)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place rack in the center of the oven. Butter, or spray with a non stick vegetable spray, a 9 x 13 inch (23 x 33 cm) pan. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In another large bowl, whisk together the eggs, mashed bananas, water, milk, oil, and vanilla extract. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir, or whisk, until combined. You will notice that the batter is quite thin.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 35 to 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  5. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack. When completely cooled, frost with the Ganache.

Ganache:

  1. Place the chopped chocolate in a medium sized stainless steel, or heatproof bowl. Set aside.
  2. Heat the cream and butter in a medium sized saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil.
  3. Immediately pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth.
  4. When Ganache has completely cooled, beat until soft and fluffy. Then spread the frosting on top of the cake. Can garnish with dried banana chips.

P.S: Sending this as entry for Taste Buds – Cooking With Fruits event and Food palette series brown event

 

Chocolate Orange Cloud Gateau



My brother called me to say that we’ll have a get together with friends at his home during the weekend. After my success in making the Espresso Coffee Cream Cake ,I couldn’t wait to try another of Deeba’s wonderful recipes. So I eagerly proposed that I will bring the dessert for the party.  My friend had earlier tried Deeba’s  Chocolate Orange Cloud Gateau and said that it was “the best tasting sponge ever”.  Naturally I finalized on the same recipe..


As expected the sponge came out quite well. I kept it in the fridge overnight, and the next day cut the cake into two and sandwiched the pieces with the filling. The frosting part was the one where I always stumbled upon. I wanted to make the beautiful scrolls as in Deeba’s, but somehow the scrolls wouldn’t stick to the cake… Deeba has patiently replied to my mail that maybe I tried to stick the scrolls after the frosting on the cake was too set to catch the spirals.. hopefully , next time I will have a better result  🙂  . .  Needless to say the cake was a hit at the party!!!



Recipe Source

Passionate About Baking

Ingredients

  • Plain flour – 150gms (1 1/4 cups)
  • Cornflour – 25gms (1/8 cup)
  • Baking powder – 2 tsps
  • Pinch of salt
  • Icing Sugar – 150gms (1 1/4 cup)
  • Oil – 5 tbsps (I used sunflower oil)
  • Water – 5 tbsps
  • Eggs – 3 / separated
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • Orange juice – 1 tbsp

Sugar Syrup

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/8 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp orange extract

Method:
Simmer till the sugar has dissolved, and cool completely.

Filling:

  • Whipping Cream – 200ml
  • Almonds – 3 tbsp (ground)
  • Castor sugar – 2-3 tbsps

Ganache:

  • Cream – 150 ml (15% fat)
  • Dark chocolate – 150gms / broken into pieces
  • Some extra chocolate for garnishing (grated, scrolls etc)
  • Silver dragees, orange slices, powdered sugar etc for garnishing.

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C. Line an 8″ springform tin.
  2. Sift the cornflour + flour + baking powder + salt + icing sugar into a mixing bowl.
  3. Beat the egg whites till they stand in soft peaks & keep aside.
  4. Lightly beat the oil + water + yolks together & stir into the dry ingredients.
  5. Beat until smooth, & stir in the juice & zest.
  6. Fold the whites gently into the yolk mixture.
  7. Turn into lined tin & bake for about 45 minutes till well risen & golden brown. Check if it is done with a wooden pick.( Slide a sheet of foil lightly over the top if it begins to brown too fast).
  8. Leave in tin for 10 minutes, & then cool completely on rack.
  9. Once cool, cut into 2 or 3 layers.
  10. Soak with the sugar syrup

Filling:

  1. Whip the cream + sugar till firm. Whisk in the ground almonds.
  2. Reserve a little cream for the topping, & sandwich the layers with the rest.

Ganache:
Put the cream & dark chocolate into a pan heat over low heat till all the chocolate has melted, stirring constantly. Stir well, & leave to cool.

Frost the sides & top of the cake with the ganache. Decorate the top with grated chocolate curls & pipe a design with the reserved almond cream. Top with a few slices of orange, chocolate shavings & silver dragees etc. Dust with some powdered sugar.

Chill well & serve right out of the fridge!

P.S :Sending this as an entry to Delicious Desserts event hosted by What’s Cooking today!!

Sending this to the Tried and Tested Event by Lakshmi guest hosted by Jayasri of Samayal Arai


Espresso Coffee Cream Cake


It was our wedding anniversary 2 weeks back  and I thought of baking an anniversary special cake  .. As my hubby is not  so fond of chocolate I was left with two choices – praline or coffee … I zeroed in on the coffee …


A few months back my friend had introduced me to this wonderful blog ,Passionate About Baking… I was totally mesmerized by the recipes and the snaps in the blog. I really wanted to try one of the recipes and was waiting for the right occasion.. Well, what’s more special than our anniversary.. I selected the Espresso Coffee Cream Cake.


The process involved while making the cake – beating the eggs over hot simmering water – was a first time for me.  Though not sure if I was doing it right ,I went through the whole process exactly as mentioned in the recipe… and the end result was just fabulous !!!  My hubby was really impressed and so were my parents and brother who had come over for the weekend…


Thank you Deeba for sharing this wonderful recipe..I was literally over the moon when I received your mail


Recipe Source
SIMPLE COFFEE GENOISE 

  • 4 large eggs (If the eggs are medium sized, add an extra egg yolk)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp instant espresso powder (I used nestle coffee powder as I didn’t have espresso …)
  • 1 cup flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 190C. Line the bottom and sides of a 8″ spring form round tin. Grease and dust with flour.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the eggs with the sugar over a bowl of simmering hot water for about 5 minutes till thick and mousse  like.
  3. Take off water and continue to beat till the mixture cools down, about 5-7 minutes. Add the espresso and beat in again for a minute.
  4. Fold the flour into the mousse batter gently, in 3 goes, using the  cut and fold method till it’s mixed through well. Be careful not to release the beaten in air.
  5. Take a cup of this batter in another bowl, and mix the melted cooled butter through it. Now gently fold this back into the rest of the batter.
  6. Turn the batter into the prepared baking tin, and bake for 30-35 minutes, till a tester comes out clean.

Filling:

  • 1 tbsp coffee dissolved in 3 tbsp water with 1 tbsp sugar
  • 400ml low fat cream
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp coffee essence {or 1 tsp instant coffee}

Method:

  1. Whip together the cream, sugar, and coffee essence till medium peaks form.
  2. Brush each side of the cake with the coffee syrup, and sandwich with the filling. Reserve any remaining cream for garnishing the top.

Topping:

  • 300ml low fat cream
  • 2-3 tbsp vanilla powdered sugar
  • 1 scant tbsp instant espresso powder
  • Dark chocolate for garnishing

Method:

Whip together until stiff peaks form. Frost the sides of the cake first, and then the top. Garnish as desired.

Sending this to the Tried and Tested Event by Lakshmi guest hosted by Jayasri of Samayal Arai

Molten lava cake

lavacake1

I was searching for a recipe for Molten Lava Cake and came across Martha Stewart’s recipe… tried it and the outcome was perfect.. as a chocolate lover this is the ultimate dessert for me 🙂

Ingredients

 

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for muffin tins
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar, plus more for muffin tins
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, (220gms) melted
  • Icing sugar, for dusting

 

 

Directions

  1. Melt the chocolate  using the double boiler method. (The larger saucepan is partially filled with water brought to a simmer or boil. Chocolate is put in a smaller saucepan and kept in the larger one..The indirect heat melts the chocolate… )
  2. Using an electric beater cream the butter and granulated sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  3. Beat in the melted chocolate until just combined.
  4. Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Generously butter 6 cups of a standard muffin tin/ramekin. Dust with granulated sugar, and tap out excess.Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups.
  5. Bake for until 8 to 10 minutes.  8 minutes will give u a more liquid  center, 10 minutes will give you a soft cake…  u can choose the time according to your preference.( I did mine for 8 minutes… ) Remove from oven; let stand 10 minutes.
  6. To serve, turn out cakes, and place on serving plates, bottom sides up. Dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve with whipped cream, if desired.