Honey Cheese Sponge Cake

TGIF! It’s been quite a while since i have posted but i have been baking weekly still. I’ve been rather hardworking going to libraries, browsing through cookery and baking books, reading and feeding my knowledge. Learning is a never ending process.

There’s a recent craze about this Le Castella that comes to Singapore and they are everywhere in the media. Castella (カステラ?Kasutera) is a popular Japanesesponge cake made of sugar, flour, eggs, and starch syrup. When this cake comes to Taiwan, the wait was 5 hours and when it comes to Singapore it was a 3 1/2 hours. The Queue was CRAZY and I was initially jumping with excitement but after i’ve seen alot of media photos of the cake, with alot of so-so reviews, i was reluctant to try.

Le Castella T1

Some friends tried it and gave the feedback that it’s not worth buying, they taste like normal sponge, just softer or fluffier. The cakes look inconsistent, dense and charred on the surface. An over-baked charred skin is a huge turn off to me, becasue a charred skin could overpower the original taste of a good cake/any baked goods.

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There’s also a link here –> http://www.asiaone.com/singapore/taiwans-famous-castella-cake-town-heres-our-verdict which doesn’t seems to have very good reviews about the cake as well..

And so.. i did my own version (adapted from guai shu shu’s cheesy sponge cake). There are still rooms for improvement, however this is my first try =)

Honey Cheese Castella Recipe

 

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Ingredients:

The yolks batter
80g melted butter
6 egg yolks ( i used 60g eggs)
100g of cake flour
60g honey
20g milk
1/2 tsp salt

The white meringue
6 egg whites
60g sugar
1/2 tsp cream of tartar (optional)

Grated cheddar cheese or any cheese preferred

 

Method

 

  1. The yolk batter – Pre-heat oven to 160 degree
  2. Whisk egg yolks and 2 tbsp of sugar till light and fluffy
  3. Add salt, milk, melted butter and honey, mix well.
  4. Add cake flour, mix well until smooth, put aside.

 

 

  1. The white meringue – Pour all your whites in clean mixing bowl, using a machine and whisk till it’s frothy, add in your cream of tartar. Gradually add in your sugar in batches when the whites becomes soft peaks while whisking till it reaches soft peak form.
  2. Take 1/3 of the white meringue, fold it into the yolk meringue. Do this in 3 batches until fully combined. Try not to over mix and deflate the batter.

 

 

Baking time!!

 

  1. Line your baking tin. I used a rectangular tin for my bake today. Pour in half of the batter.
  2. Spread/Sprinkle cheddar cheese all over your cake and top up the other half of the batter over it.
  3. Level the top lightly, and bang it on the table a few times to remove large air bubbles trapped inside the cake.
  4. Steam bake for 30-40 mins or until a skewer comes out clean.
  5. Remove from tray. Cut and Serve =)

 

I might be baking mine for too long or did not use the water bathe method so the cake comes out slightly more dry as compared to the original recipe. However, the cake taste heavenly of honey, it’s soft and fluffy and it stays that way for the next 2 days!

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Pandan Chiffon Cake -All Natural

I love Panda Chiffon since i was a kid, i could remember how soft and fluffy these cakes are together with the fragrance of pandan and coconut cream and how i love eating these. Cakes were not as fanciful as what we have in this century now, bakeries were all very traditional and cakes were quite plain looking during those times, it needs the skills of a baker to bring out the fragrance of a bake to attract customers to their shops.

Pandan chiffon can be seen and bought easily almost in all kinds of bakery shops now, price ranging from as cheap as $5 to as much as $18 per cake. Not sure how many of you felt this way, but personally i never liked the taste of fake essence and lots of baking powder to make a cake rise to become fluffy, especially the after taste of the chemical will always stays in my tongue, “spoiling” my tastebud for a moment. That’s commercially baked, huge quantity, lots of chemicals and cheap, comparing to home bakes which i would love to use as much natural ingredients as possible, lots of work and time, in result to a more expensive cake, but no matter how much does a home baker charge for a bake, they will never recover their labour cost with the number of hours they spent – it’s all about passion. Support home bake, appreciate their hard work, support their passion =)

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pancake-chiffon-chart
I forgot where i have found this chart online but it’s a good piece of information to share. Most recipes online uses pandan essence/paste and food colouring, it’s much easier especially for beginners but you could slowly change and adapt to this all natural recipe, trust me, you will taste the difference!

So, here’s my recipe on my pandan chiffon cake after a few quick research..

Pandan Chiffon Recipe – For 23 cm Tin

The yolks meringue
6 egg yolks (I couldn’t get 60g eggs so i used 55g eggs instead)
30g sugar
75g canola oil
15g pandan water (Pictures shown at the end of the recipe)
60g coconut cream/milk (Prefer freshly squeezed from market)
135 cake flour / top flour

The whites meringue
8 egg whites
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
90g sugar

Method

1. Preheat oven at 160C
2. Using a hand whisk or hand machine, whisk yolks till double in volume. Slowly add in 30g of sugar and whisk till pale and fluffy.
3. Stir in oil and combine. Add in pandan water and coconut cream, stir till well mixed.
4. Sift in the cake/top flour, using hand whisk to whisk till well combined.
5. The egg white meringue (important!!) – Pour all your whites in clean mixing bowl, using a machine and whisk till it’s frothy, add in your cream of tartar.Gradually add in your sugar in batches when the whites becomes soft peaks while whisking till it reaches almost stiff peak form.
6. Take 1/3 of the white meringue, fold it into the yolk meringue. This will make your yolk meringue lighter before adding it back into the white meringue to combine,
7. Now that your yolk meringue is lighter, pour it all into the white meringue and fold. We do not want to over fold or over combine this as it will deflate the batter.
8. Once you are done, pour your cake batter into chiffon tin. Level the surface, and give it a few taps on the table to remove large air bubbles.
9. Bake in the oven at 160C for about 70mins. If the top gets too browned, prepare a aluminium foil to cover the top after 40mins of baking.

10. Remove from oven. Quickly turn your chiffon tin upside down and let it cool off totally.

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11. Removing the cake – Personally i feel the chiffon cakes that i make, it’s easier to remove them with hands and it will look much prettier as compared to using a knife.

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Cut and serve!

 

How to get pandan water?

Cut pandan leaves and filled it in a blender. Add water, just enough to blend and get the juice out of the leaves.

Using a sieve, drain the liquid out and best to let the liquid sit in the fridge overnight. The liquid will separate into 2 parts, we will gently pour out the top part of clearer pandan water (which we can use for cooking desserts), leaving the dark green colour for our pandan cake.

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Do tag me or #hashtag #Judybakez if you have tried my recipe ^_^

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#Skills are for life

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Black Sesame Chiffon Cake

Hi 🙋🏻 I’m so excited to share a video that I spend an hour editing last night! Haha.. I made a black sesame chiffon cake. A little tough doing 2 things at once because all I have is a phone for videoing OR taking photos and you need to pause and stop in different parts. Hence I did some little mistakes here (to me):

– This cake is a little under baked (a little moist and harder to remove as the surface sticks on the fingers)

– I wanted the cake to be softer, intended to whip the egg whites to soft peak, but I overwhipped it and it became stiff peak, but that’s fine as well. Stiff peaks are easier to handle.

If you are baking using this recipe, please adjust your baking time and temperature accordingly or bakes till you insert a skewer and it comes out clean.


Ingredients:

  • 6 egg whites
  • 60 gm caster sugar
  • 80 gm cake flour
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 30 gm black sesame powder
  • 5 egg yolk
  • 30 gm caster sugar
  • 50 gm extra light olive oil
  • 80 ml milk

Method

  1. Preheat oven at 160C
  2. Sift cake flour, sesame powder and baking power in a bowl.
  3. Add sugar into egg yolks and whisk till light and fluffy.
  4. Pour in the milk and oil mixture slowly by batches and mix. Next pour in the sifted flour and mix.
  5. Egg whites :- In a machine, whisk the eggs till it starts to foam, then slowly add in the sugar by batches. Whisk till stiff peak.
  6. Take 1/3 of the whisked egg white into the flour mixture and fold.
  7. Pour the mixture into the rest of the egg white meringue, and fold gently till evenly mixed.
  8. Pour in a chiffon tin (mine is a 23cm tin) and bake for 1hr – 1hr 15mins. Test by inserting a skewer.
  9. Take out the tin from the oven and invert on the cooling rack till it is cooled enough to remove from tin.

Enjoy the video and feel free to communicate on the chat box on right hand side 😊💃🏻🍰


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Pandan Cake with Gula Melaka Cream Cheese Frosting

Every bake starts with a craving for some flavors or taste. Baked a strawberry with fresh cream swiss roll on Saturday for friends but I ended up leaving it in the fridge when I left home T_T

Fresh cream has always been my favorite for all kinds of cakes. I remember tasting different types of cakes from the bakery and didn’t understand why some cream taste good while some are not.

There are two widely used types of creams for cakes, the fresh cream and the buttercream. Buttercream is made by creaming butter with powdered sugar, which I always feel they are too buttery and oily, on the other hand, you will be able to eat more of fresh cream as the fat content is lesser or probably less buttery for some people.

I usually get my whipping cream from phoon huat (red man) because it is the most accessible for me. Here are the 2 different types of whipped cream, fresh cream and dairy cream. Dairy cream contains higher fat content, I would recommend hand whisking method because when you over whipped dairy cream, it becomes lumpy and eventually turns to butter, whereas it’s much easier to whip fresh cream and you won’t need to worry about over whipping.

 

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Pandan Cake with Gula Melaka Cream Cheese

Ingredients (A)

3 egg yolks (I used 60g eggs)
30g sugar
50ml coconut milk
2 tbsp of pandan extract*
45g of corn oil
60g cake flour (sifted)
½ tsp of baking powder (sifted)

*Pandan extract: I blend 6 pandan leaves with about 3-5 tbsp of water.  Use as little water as possible. Press through a fine sieve or squeeze to extract the liquid. If you have the time, let it sit for a few hours, or overnight in the fridge. The green extract will settle at the bottom and you can remove the excess water before using.

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Ingredients (B)

3 egg whites
45g sugar

Cream cheese filling

Gula Melaka (Coconut sugar) ½ block (crushed for easier melting)
2-3 tbsp water, just enough to melt the sugar
Cream Cheese 200g
Whipped Fresh Cream 50g
20g castor sugar
 

Method:

  1. Preheat your oven at 170°C.
  2. Mix together coconut milk, pandan essence and oil in a bowl.
  3. In a bowl, put together egg yolks and sugar. I used a hand whisk, whisk till light and fluffy.
  4. Next, add in the coconut milk mixture, gently whisk to mix.
  5. Add in sifted flour & baking powder, and whisk to mix evenly.
  6. Egg whites – Put the egg whites in a large bowl, whisk on high speed till bubbly or frothy. Add in sugar by batches while whisking. Whisk till soft peak.
  7. Gently fold in 1/3 of the meringue (whisked egg whites) in to egg yolk mixture. Pour the yolk mixture into the meringue, and fold till combine. Do not over-mix.
  8. Grease and line the prepared tin with parchment paper. Gently pour the mixture into the tin and spread with a spatula to even out so every corner is properly covered. Bang on the table top surface a few times to remove large air pockets before placing it into the oven.
  9. Bake for 15mins or till surface is slight browned. You can test with a toothpick. Remove from oven and let cool on a wired rack. Remove the parchment paper so the cake does not absorb the condensation during cooling process.

 

Frosting

  1. Put Gula Melaka in a pot with water. Bring it to boil till sugar melts and let it cool.
  2. Whipped cream cheese together with sugar till creamy, bout 4-6 mins on high speed, scraping the sides of the bowl regularly.
  3. Add in the cooled Gula Melaka, whisked till mixed. Next add in the whipped cream and give it a final mix and your frosting is ready!

Finale: Assemble!

 

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Pulut Hitam Butter Cake

A few weeks ago, i was one of the home bakers to be invited to ToTTs by Singapore Home Cooks to do a live demonstration for fruit cream puffs for 100 pax. As we baked, members will walk around to view the whole procedure and there is also a question and answer session after that. It was really a good exposure and experience, not to mention with loads of fun!

A total of 10 home bakers were invited to the event. There was one special bake by a home baker which lingers in my mind. A pulut hitam cake. Pulut Hitam is a well-liked desert by most Singaporeans because of the fragrance from the coconut milk together which blends so well with the special taste of black glutinous rice. Turning the exact same taste into a cake has never came across my mind, and i’ve gotten to taste it for the first time. I couldn’t get the taste off my mind after that.

To bake this cake, you will need black glutinous rice flour, an ingredient which is not easily found on stores or supermarket, which i got my hands on it eventually. During the days while waiting for my flour, a lot was running through my mind. How can i make the cake texture better and how to perfect the bake? Using Brenda’s recipe, i made some little changes to it, and here’s the recipe…

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Pulut Hitam Butter Cake

Ingredients A
227g of butter (i used 1 block of SCS butter)
130g sugar
4 egg yolks
180g concentrated coconut milk
160g black glutinous rice flour
100g self rising flour
Coconuts flakes steamed with pandan leaves (optional)

Ingredients B
4 egg whites
60g sugar

 

Method:

Step 1: Preheat oven at 170°C.
Step 2: Sift self rising flour, glutinous rice flour in a big bowl.
Step 3: Beat butter and sugar till light and frothy. Scrap twice to ensure all butter is well mixed.

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Step 4: Add egg yolks, one at a time. Make sure the egg yolk is well mixed before adding the next one.

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Step 5: Fold in the sifted self rising flour and glutinous rice flour. Separate into 3 batches, alternating flour first then coconut milk. Set aside.

 

Step 6: In a clean mixer, beat egg whites till bubbles are seen, slowly adding in your sugar by batches. Beat till stiff peak. (I had mine over beaten because i was washing the dishes >_<)

Step 7: Fold the egg white meringue into the butter mixture by batches, 1/3 each time.

Step 8: Bake for 170°C for 50mins or until fully cooked. Test by inserting a skewer into the cake and it comes out clean.

Step 9: Serve! Top with coconut flakes for a different texture and feel of the cake.