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Sunday, March 30, 2008

3 in 1


I was pretty excited when I learned that Morven of Food, Art and Random Thoughts chose Dorie Greenspan's Perfect Party Cake for our Daring Bakers March challenge. So many things were going through my mind on how I can play around with the cake. I had a hard time sleeping that night afraid I might loss my ideas when I woke up. So that very night I made sketches on how I want my cakes to look like. Yes, I had quite a few ideas and it was so hard to decide which one would I make.
I was excited with this project since the last time I made a decorated cake was way back New Years Eve. Normally, I make a layered frosted cake once or twice a month but since there was so much things going on these past few months I barely had the time to make one. I miss decorating cakes, which I feel is the most fun part. I have this sense of accomplishments whenever I see my finished creations.

First attempt : Mango Buttercream Cake

Mango Party Cake

I love mango so much that this flavour was the very first thing that came to my mind. I want a mango flavoured cake. Since it was a rule to use the cake recipe itself, I only omitted the lemon rind on the cake recipe.

Mango Party Cake

I brushed the layers of cake with simple sugar syrup. For the buttercream we were allowed to play around with the flavours. I omitted the lemon juice and instead replaced it with mashed sweet mangoes. I decided to use mashed not puree because I liked the idea of bits of mangoes suspended in the buttercream. I have expressed before that I'm no lover of buttercream. I rarely use buttercream in my cakes since I prefer the taste and texture of whipped cream. I also decided to use the mango buttercream as filling not as frosting so I can use it minimally in filling the cake.

Mango Party Cake

I covered the cake with whipped cream which contrasted beautifully with the mango slices which I piled on top of the cake.


Second Attempt :Ube (purple yam) and Pandan (Screwpine) Layer Cake

Ube Pandan Party Cake


This is my asian version of Dorie's cake. Purple yam cakes are popular in the Philippines and pandan on the other hand is very common here in Singapore. This cake merges both flavours from two countries close to my heart.


Ube Pandan Party Cake

It may seem a daunting task at first but with the convenience of purple yam extract and pandan essense, I was able to flavour the cake without much alteration on the recipe. I simply omitted the lemon zest and lemon extract and replaced it with my preferred flavouring. For the filling of the cake, I used leche flan ( sweet egg custard). In order to come up with a spreading consistency of leche flan, I baked it in water bath instead of steaming it. Surprisingly, it came out very smooth and creamy. Very much like the Brazo de Mercedes filling I made before. This cake has three big flavors but overall it mingled harmoniuosly to produce a rich cake distinctly asian and unforgettable.


Third Attempt : Chocolate and Vanilla Version

Choco Vanilla Party Cake


This is the classic version. My kids all time favorite flavour. This cake is seemingly easy to make by adding cocoa powder for the chocolate cake while the other half is left plain.


Choco Vanilla Party Cake

I filled the cake with chocolate pudding. I then covered it whipped cream and dusted the surface with cocoa. I love how this cake turned out...totally divine! Truly worth serving in parties.


Choco Vanilla Party Cake


Perfect Party Cake
Baking from My Home to Yours

For the Cake

2 1/4 cups cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ¼ cups whole milk or buttermilk
4 large egg whites
1 ½ cups sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1 stick (8 tablespoons or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ teaspoon pure lemon extract

For the Buttercream
1 cup sugar
4 large egg whites
3 sticks (12 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
¼ cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 large lemons)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For Finishing
2/3 cup seedless raspberry preserves stirred vigorously or warmed gently until spreadable
About 1 ½ cups sweetened shredded coconut

Getting Ready
Centre a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two 9 x 2 inch round cake pans and line the bottom of each pan with a round of buttered parchment or wax paper. Put the pans on a baking sheet.

To Make the Cake
Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.
Whisk together the milk and egg whites in a medium bowl.
Put the sugar and lemon zest in a mixer bowl or another large bowl and rub them together with your fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant.
Add the butter and working with the paddle or whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat at medium speed for a full 3 minutes, until the butter and sugar are very light.
Beat in the extract, then add one third of the flour mixture, still beating on medium speed.
Beat in half of the milk-egg mixture, then beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients until incorporated.
Add the rest of the milk and eggs beating until the batter is homogeneous, then add the last of the dry ingredients.
Finally, give the batter a good 2- minute beating to ensure that it is thoroughly mixed and well aerated.
Divide the batter between the two pans and smooth the tops with a rubber spatula.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the cakes are well risen and springy to the touch – a thin knife inserted into the centers should come out clean
Transfer the cakes to cooling racks and cool for about 5 minutes, then run a knife around the sides of the cakes, unfold them and peel off the paper liners.
Invert and cool to room temperature, right side up (the cooled cake layers can be wrapped airtight and stored at room temperature overnight or frozen for up to two months).

To Make the Buttercream
Put the sugar and egg whites in a mixer bowl or another large heatproof bowl, fit the bowl over a plan of simmering water and whisk constantly, keeping the mixture over the heat, until it feels hot to the touch, about 3 minutes.
The sugar should be dissolved, and the mixture will look like shiny marshmallow cream.
Remove the bowl from the heat.
Working with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer, beat the meringue on medium speed until it is cool, about 5 minutes.
Switch to the paddle attachment if you have one, and add the butter a stick at a time, beating until smooth.
Once all the butter is in, beat in the buttercream on medium-high speed until it is thick and very smooth, 6-10 minutes.
During this time the buttercream may curdle or separate – just keep beating and it will come together again.
On medium speed, gradually beat in the lemon juice, waiting until each addition is absorbed before adding more, and then the vanilla.
You should have a shiny smooth, velvety, pristine white buttercream. Press a piece of plastic against the surface of the buttercream and set aside briefly.

To Assemble the Cake
Using a sharp serrated knife and a gentle sawing motion, slice each layer horizontally in half.
Put one layer cut side up on a cardboard cake round or a cake plate protected by strips of wax or parchment paper.
Spread it with one third of the preserves.
Cover the jam evenly with about one quarter of the buttercream.
Top with another layer, spread with preserves and buttercream and then do the same with a third layer (you’ll have used all the jam and have buttercream leftover).
Place the last layer cut side down on top of the cake and use the remaining buttercream to frost the sides and top.
Press the coconut into the frosting, patting it gently all over the sides and top.

Serving
The cake is ready to serve as soon as it is assembled, but I think it’s best to let it sit and set for a couple of hours in a cool room – not the refrigerator. Whether you wait or slice and enjoy it immediately, the cake should be served at room temperature; it loses all its subtlety when it’s cold. Depending on your audience you can serve the cake with just about anything from milk to sweet or bubbly wine.

Storing
The cake is best the day it is made, but you can refrigerate it, well covered, for up to two days. Bring it to room temperature before serving. If you want to freeze the cake, slide it into the freezer to set, then wrap it really well – it will keep for up to 2 months in the freezer; defrost it, still wrapped overnight in the refrigerator.

Playing Around
Since lemon is such a friendly flavour, feel free to make changes in the preserves: other red preserves – cherry or strawberry – look especially nice, but you can even use plum or blueberry jam.

Fresh Berry Cake
If you will be serving the cake the day it is made, cover each layer of buttercream with fresh berries – use whole raspberries, sliced or halved strawberries or whole blackberries, and match the preserves to the fruit. You can replace the coconut on top of the cake with a crown of berries, or use both coconut and berries. You can also replace the buttercream between the layers with fairly firmly whipped sweetened cream and then either frost the cake with buttercream (the contrast between the lighter whipped cream and the firmer buttercream is nice) or finish it with more whipped cream. If you use whipped cream, you’ll have to store the cake the in the refrigerator – let it sit for about 20 minutes at room temperature before serving.

A big thanks to Morven for choosing a perfect recipe for this months challenge. It was generous of her to let us have the freedom on how to interpret this cake. The recipe may seem very basic but this challenge showed me the true meaning of being a true Daring Baker.

My fellow
Daring Baker's have more beautiful Party Cake to showcase...do check out their version :)



111 comments:

chelley325 said...

Your cakes are absolutely breathtaking! Beautiful job! And I love your version with mango - our wedding cake was a white cake with mango filling and I'm going to try to recreate it for our anniversary next month!

steph- whisk/spoon said...

oh my gosh! truly gorgeous--all three of them!

Dharm said...

Anne,
3 cakes? And all divine? You are simply amazing!! I too think I like the Chocolate one the best. Great, Great job on all 3 cakes!

Manggy said...

Good heavens Anne, it's doubtful I will see more beautiful homemade cakes in my lifetime. What's the orange band outside the mango cake? I think that's my favorite :)

Anonymous said...

hi anne,
i have been a regular visitor of your blog and you are an amazing baker and a decorator too.i do try out your cakes quite often.can you please give me the recipe for the "chocolate and vanilla version"
cake i would love to bake it.
thanks.

Passionate baker...& beyond said...

EACH ONE IS STUNNING ANNE...took my breath away. The mango one is to die for, & then the chocolate one just killed me some more!! This is seriously professional stuff...& 3 times over...GASP! 3 in 1 month...the kids must love you for being a DB!!

Deborah said...

I can just stop looking at all of the others now - they are just not going to get any more beautiful than any of these! You amaze me!

glamah16 said...

I'm blown away. I too had a blast decorating this as its so adaptable and versitle. I really like the look of the purple yam cake.And the mango version is sure genius!

Foodie Froggy said...

You have just killed me with your cakes ! Oh MY GOD ! My favourite is the mango version, it is absolutely fantastic !! Are you a professional baker or what ??

KJ said...

Wow, simply wow. You are very talented. They are all stunning.

chriesi said...

WOW that is amazing!

Maryann said...

Amazing! Each one is more beautiful than the last! Great talent here ;)

Sheltie Girl said...

Anne - You rock! What an awesome job you did on the cake recipe this month. I love the look of each of them and while I would probably go back for seconds on the chocolate one, I would love to try out the Asian inspired cake. Simply Yummy!

Natalie @ Gluten A Go Go

L Vanel said...

Very beautiful variations on a theme!

PheMom said...

Holy WOW!!!! Your cakes all look so amazing!

^cherie said...

Amazing!!!

Anne, did u do all the chocolate moulding yourself? eg ; the mango cake- the comb 'decorator' and also the chocolate and vanilla version, the side of the the cake - the 2 colours square piece.

Again, i'm speechless. Not 2 cakes but 3! In 1 day?

A. Grace said...

to say that i'm impressed by your work here would be a massive understatement. sensational job!

Dhanggit said...

you are not a baker.;you are a magician!! your cakes are absolutely breathtaking!! well done for this month's challenge :-)

Jerry said...

OH MY GOD 3 CAKES! All of them beautiful! I especially liked the checkered one! It has chocolate! You are truly a Daring Baker!

Kelly-Jane said...

Wow wow wow!!! They are all really fantastic - someone ought to commission you to do a cake making / decoration cookbook, I'd buy it for sure!

Kristen said...

Absolutley amazing!!!! I don't know what else to say, they are all so gorgeous!

RecipeGirl said...

Wow- truly gorgeous cakes! What a talent you have, and a lucky family too!!

aisha said...

Oh. My. God. I want a slice of each one! I love the idea of using pandan. i love it's heavenly smell. And the frosting on each cake was divine. What an amazing baker!

Morven said...

WOW! WOW! WOW! So creative and so beautiful. I'm glad yu enjoyed the challenge.

Gretchen Noelle said...

Oh. My. Goodness. Times Three! Beautiful, gorgeous and breathtaking!

Jenny said...

All I can say is WOW. I just love looking at your blog. Really beautiful on all 3 of your cakes. I wouldn't know which one to choose!

Megan said...

Wow, They are all so beautiful. Love mangos so I love that cake, Love the colors in the second cake, and I want that checkered cake. You are a pro and so inspiring. I think I need to make another cake.

Faery said...

My Gosh all the cakes look delicious and beautiful but the one with mangoes is killing me I love mangoes

Isabelle said...

tes gâteaux sont absolument fantastiques ! Je suis très impressionnée par ton talent de décoratrice :)

mummyji said...

OMG!! These cakes look absolutely beautiful!
the chocolate one really looks sublime... you are truly gifted!

Lunch Buckets said...

Great googly moogly. I think I'll go sit in the corner and chew on my shoe now. Simply beautiful.

Anne said...

Manggy, thanks! your cakes are far more beautiful :) the orange band is white chocolate which I tinted orange.

Cherie, for the mango cake I made it using melted white chocolate which I tinted orange. For the choco-vanilla chocolate deco, I bought it from Sun Lik :)

Jenny said...

I am astounded by your creativity, and the mango one is probably my favorite. I can just picture the silky mango buttercream!

dailydelicious said...

Great, what can I say, I just can say this word many times. I love all your cake they are so breathtaking!
Oh, I fall in love with your blog.

Gato Azul | Chat Bleu said...

WOW! :P Simply WOW !

Julius said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Anne - your cakes are absolutely stunning! I am in complete awe.

Your choice of flavours (ube, mango) brings me right back home.

Julius from Occasional Baker

ChichaJo said...

Your cakes are stunning...absolutely and positively stunning! Not only are they gorgeous to behold, the flavors are all close to my heart too! Mango, ube, pandan, and of course, chocolate! I'm totally in love with your cakes!!! You make magic in the kitchen Anne, really and truly :)

Gigi said...

The mango cake is just stunning! All three are stunning but the mango cake is calling my name!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Wow, I can't find my words to describe such wonderful creations!!! You are an artist! All three cakes look divine and breathtakingly beautiful!

Cheers,

Rosa

Carrie said...

Wow! You are incredible!! Do you sell these things for a living??? Amazing!!!

TERESA said...

Wow¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡ BEAUTIFUL¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡

Im going to phone you for my birthday, and you send me one of your cakes to Spain. Ok?

They look fantastic¡¡¡¡

Congratulations¡¡¡

TERESA

Nina's Kitchen (Nina Timm) said...

Speechless, that's what I am.you are a genius and your family very lucky.

SaraLynn said...

WOW! Your cakes are amazing! Congrats on having such a gift!

Cheryl said...

blajalkbjblkjblbj

I have completely lost my ability to speak clearly.

oh my woman, you are ridiculously talented. All three are the most stunning things ever.

Molly Loves Paris said...

Your cake making talent overwhelms me. You are really good!

Kim U said...

I love all of these! Really beautiful.

ioyces said...

Anne!! I m SPEECHLESS after looking at your cakes!!!
WOW!!! Especially love the Asian flavoured one!! So unique and the colours are so attractive!!!
I love your blog too!!! So beautiful!!! Will be dropping by more often from now on...!!!! ;)

Oh..and a burning question....where do u find the stomachs for all these cakes??

Mother Bliss said...

OH MY GOODNESS!! My jaw dropped, your cakes look so BEAUTIFUL and AMAZING! You sure took it to the next level. Great job!

Jenny said...

Holy Cow! Those are amazing looking!

pixie said...

gee, the first was gorgeous enough but three? you're in a class all of your own!

Barbara Bakes said...

WOW - I am truly impressed! I hope you sell cakes for a living. You'd make a fortune!

Lis said...

I have to leave work right now, so I don't have time to read.. but I couldn't not say this before I go - and I will come back and read later -

Anne? marry me? :D

xoxo

Cookie baker Lynn said...

Oh, Anne, I need to scrape my jaw off the floor. All three of your cakes are soooo beautiful! Wow is all I can say!

Half Baked said...

Wow your cakes are truly amazing! Each one was simply stunning! Your have an amazing talent. Way to go!!!

Lesley said...

THese are fantastic, you are so incredibly talented. I'm so glad I stopped by to see this!

Andrea said...

Wow. You are not just a Daring Baker, but an AMAZING baker!

Brilynn said...

WHOA! You went above and beyond, those cakes look amazing!

Yenping said...

ANNE! Your cakes are confoundingly beautiful. Pandan and yam, and filipino mangos (presumably) are ingredients I won't be able to find here - but I can totally imagine their flavours combined. You're such an inspiration, and you've made me miss Singaporean food. . .

jasmine said...

Oh my word! These look amazing--I particularly like the mango one.

very well done :)

j

Nan said...

Your cakes take my breath away. Honestly, they are the most beautiful things and I can't believe you made THREE! Your artistry is utterly inspiring!

Michelle said...

Oh my goodness...those look like something I would get at a bakery. Awesome Job!!

Obsessive Foodie or Food Addict....You Decide said...

Those cakes are beautiful works of art. You should be very proud!!

Poonam said...

3 versions of the cake...you are a genious!

Tartelette said...

Anne, you never fail to make me happy! The cakes are absolutely stunning and so "happy"! I bow to you!

Sweet Sins said...

My first challenge will be for this coming up month and you have made me nervous with your PERFECT CAKES!! they are beautiful!! Great Job

Jennifer said...

OH MY GOSH! Those are the most PERFECT cakes I've seen so far! Wonderful job! :)

Baking Soda said...

Breathtaking! This is taking it to the next level and beyond! The decorations are just so gorgeous, love love the mango roses.

creampuff said...

Oh, my word, Anne!

Oh, my word!

I don't even know what to say. Stunning all around! Your dedication to this challenge and creativity encompasses exactly what it means to be a DBer!!!

June said...

That mango buttercream cake looks absolutely amazing! You are so talented! Great work.

Ally said...

I am in Awe!! You are a cake goddess! Love it, absolutely gorgeous!

Erin said...

These are some of the most beautiful cakes I've ever seen! You are amazing!

maybahay said...

oh anne, i wouldn't know which one to go for. they all look PERFECT.
they are amazing. your stuff are pretty inspirational.

KayKat said...

o.m.g. I'm speechless!

These are mindblowingly good. I'm sitting here slack-jawed, desperately hoping that a piece of one of these cakes will just drop in my mouth!

my food affair said...

i don't even know what to say. your cakes are absolutely beautiful!!! you really took this challenge to a new level!! they look better than the cakes i see at the stores! wow!! i'm so impressed!

Aimei said...

Oh my ..they are simply too divine..I like both the mango and chocolate..the mango's design is more exotic...while chocolate lovers cant resisit trying it...can't tell which I prefer..though if i can only choose one to eat, that will be the chocolate version!

Grace Freedman said...

Absolutely beautiful! Congrats! I immediately called over my 9 year old daughter to show her the pictures. She is an "Ace of Cakes" fan and always dreaming about baking cool, artistic cakes. Thanks for sharing them with us!

toni said...

All those cakes are amazing. You're an ARTIST!

Baking Fiend said...

All 3 cakes are lovely.. but like u, i'm partial to mangoes too!

SiHaN said...

wow.. i've been reading ur blog for the longest time and i must say that u;re surprised everyone by coming up with 3 versions! Stunning!!!

i choose the mango one of course if i cld have one all to myself. *sniggers*.. YUMMY!

eliza said...

i'm speechless as well! you created beautiful cakes, and i absolutely love your mango cake, it's so perfect!

Mary said...

Stunning cakes. I love that you took the challenge and made it your own (times 3)!

Peabody said...

Now those are just stunning. You are a true cake maker!

Jaime said...

WOW! you put all other cakes to shame! they are all beautiful, each in their own way :) great job! i'm super impressed. your cake decorating skills are amazing.

Jacelyn said...

SO beauitful! How did you do the checkered cake?

The Cooking Pwincess said...

Dear anne,

I am thinking of making the mango cake for a friend. Would you be able to tell me how to line the side of the cake with the chocolate? i tried looking tru the internet but couldnt find how to. Please, please, please, please? *big wet eyes*

Anne said...

cooking pwincess, for the chocolate band, it's actually melted white chocolate which I tinted with orange food color (yellow will also do). Use a plastic band (the one usually wrapped around cakes) or you can also use grease proof paper. Pipe the chocolate in zigzag pattern. Then pipe another pattern which is opposite in direction than the first one. Leave the chocolate on room temperature to slightly firm up. Then carefully wrap the plastic band around the cold cake. Can place it in the fridge for a few minutes then you carefully remove the plastic band or grease proof paper.

I hope that helps :)

marion - il en faut peu pour ... said...

can you explain me why I didn't come here earlier ???? You can be proud of your work, congratulations, aain !

nicole said...

Those cakes are out of control. You need to open a bakery shop.

Anonymous said...

Hi ann, I tried making the cake but it turned out really dense and sticky. would you know why? or did yors turned out like that too?

Jacinta

nora2810 said...

Oh my, you are very good in baking and cooking. All the cake and other food look very yummy & nice presentation. I really adore your cooking style.

Yen Le said...

Wow Anne!!! That mango cake looks absolutely amazing!!! And on first attempt...i wish i could make a cake like that some day. How do you to pipe the whipped cream designs so nice? Whenever I pipe with whipped cream....it runs and its never as smooth like in your picture. Do you use a special recipe? Would you mean sharing it with me please?

Anne said...

Hi Yen Le! No secret recipe here. I just make sure that the whipped cream is chilled and do not over whip it so it won't appear grainy. If I use non dairy whipping cream I don't add sugar anymore but if I use heavy whipping cream I add powdered sugar. The cornstarh in the powder sugar will help stabilized it.

Hana said...

I am in complete awe with your delicious looking cakes. The one that I grabs me is the Ube/Pandan cake. I have just recently found your website and would absolutely LOVE to know how you made the Ube/Pandan cake. I would LOVE to try and make this cake, is the recipe "The Perfect Party Cake" the one that you used? I just recently moved to Illinois and cannot get a decent Ube cake. Please help! Thank you so much.

Anne said...

Hi Hana! Yes I used Dorie's recipe. As stated I replaced the flavouring accordingly. Warning though, this cake is great if served in room tempt. otherwise it becomes dry and too firm for my liking. And it's best the day it was made.

missyserene said...

hi hi i've been looking for a Mango Buttercream Cake recipe and there i found yours! your cake looks soo soft & the minimal buttercream is just perfect! Needless to say, the decor was awesome! Do u think i could have the recipe??

Can u email me at spy.serene@yahoo.com.sg

thanks in advance!

Priya MV said...

Hey Anne ,
I loved your site......you are an awesome baker....please can you tell me the recipe of the "mango buttercream cake " in you site

Kristine said...

Hi OMG, your cakes are beautiful!! I am looking for an ube recipe that I can bake for my husband's birthday. I am wondering where you can get the Ube flavoring/extract. I am not in the Philippines, so it's hard to find in North America. Thanks!!!

Anne said...

Kristine, ube flavouring is also not available here in Singapore. I always buy them in the Philippines.

ABCDErica said...

Instead of the purple yam extract and pandan essence, do you think a purple yam powder and pandan extract would be fine? Thanks so much--and love the cakes!

Anne said...

Erica, pandan extract will do :)

Unknown said...

Brilliant Cakes!!!! I want your mango,ube cake recipe...they are so tempting....delicious...could you pls send me the recipe??

Nerisse said...

What did you use to make the cake collar for the mango cake?

Anne said...

Nerisse, I used melted white chocolate.

Anuradha Khemka said...

Anne, your mango cake looks yummilicious...can you tell me how you did the yellow icing on the side of the cake and how to prepare it. Thanks a lot

Anne said...

Anuradha, I used melted white chocolate

Anonymous said...

Amazing Anne. I love your cakes! Do you sell them? I wanna buy one for my birthday! :)

wallaby56 said...

I was baker & dessert chef. I basically worked all stations in professional kitchens for many years. It's my passion. This purple yam cake looks & sounds delicious.I did not see the recipe, is it available?I would love to try making it.
Also, may I Pin this cake to Pinterest? Thanks, Melanie

Anne said...

Hi melanie! I used the recipe in the post although i replaced the lemon zest with ube and pandan essence. I also provided a link for the filling.

Anonymous said...

Hi Anne,

Love your mango cake, it's a WOW factor. Can I ask the milk and egg whites, do i need to whisk it into a foam or just whisk to blend together.

Thanks
TT

Anne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anne said...

Hi TT, So sorry for the delayed response.

Just whisk togther the milk and eggwhites.