Sunday, April 25, 2010

HCB - Coffee Chiffon Cake

First, I would like to congratulate Rose Levy Beranbaum on winning two IACP awards for her book, Rose's Heavenly Cakes!! I'm not surprised she won because the book is wonderful. It's full of reliable recipes that are tested over and over. And then you have the beautiful color photos. I very much enjoy baking from this book!

Now back to HCB business. This week's recipe for the Heavenly Cake Bakers, is the Coffee Chiffonlets with Dulce de Leche Whipped Cream. I don't even like coffee and yet I was super excited about making this recipe. Why? Because I've never made a chiffon cake before. I didn't have mini Angel Food Cake pans required for this recipe, so I decided to make it into a layer cake. Well, that was easier said than done. After reading through the Orange Glow Chiffon Cake recipe in Rose's Heavenly Cakes, I learned that as long as I used unbleached flour and a flower nail, I should be fine. And so the adventure started...

Looks can be sooooo deceiving... :o)

I decided to use an 8" round spring form pan since the ingredients for the Coffee Chiffon cake measured 75% of the Orange Glow Chiffon cake (which was created for a 9" pan). I was happy when the batter came about halfway up the spring form pan.




After 35 minutes, I tested the cake and the cake tester came out dry. Pretty much within 30 seconds, I had a little uh-oh moment when the cake part at the top started to shrink from the sides. But I kept my cool and flipped the cake pan upside down anyway and continued to cool it that way for 1 hour.



After I took the cake out of the pan, I couldn't believe the funny shape of the cake. It was very lopsided to say the least :o) Of course I ask myself, why did that happen? I'm thinking I might have slightly underbaked the cake. With that said, this could very well be the softest cake I've ever touched. So light, soft and spongy.


Instead of the Dulce de Leche Whipped Cream, I decided to make a coffee-flavored pastry cream because I didn't have any cream and was too lazy to go buy it :o) So I pulled out my copy of Tish Boyle's The Cake Book and made the pastry cream recipe that is part of her Boston Cream Pie, with the addition of 1/4 tsp of espresso powder. I cut the cake in half, brushed both halves with the coffee syrup, and sandwiched the coffee pastry cream in between.


To cover up this "ugly" cake, I glazed it with my standby Chocolate Glaze :o)




Final thoughts/tips:
  • This cake is a winner!! It is so light, that it just melts in your mouth. The creaminess of the pastry cream with a faint hint of coffee, is an excellent match. The cake part by itself doesn't have a very pronounced coffee flavor, which I like, however, the syrup gave it a LOT of coffee flavor. Next time, I might leave it out or just use a simple sugar syrup. Having said that, I can't stop eating it :o)
  • Hubby hasn't had a chance to try this cake yet. As soon as he does (probably tomorrow), I'll update this post with his "rating" of the cake. I have no doubt he too will love this cake, especially since he likes coffee. Update (4/26/2010): hubby liked it a lot but would have preferred the whipped cream over the pastry cream. Still, he gave it a 9 out of 10 overall rating.
  • I reduced the espresso powder in the cake batter from 2 1/4 tsp to 2 tsp to bring down the coffee flavor.
  • I made the syrup in the microwave and used about 1/4 cup of it on the cake. I was going to leave it out completely because the cake was plenty moist, but decided to use half of it instead. I replaced the Kahlua with water.
  • When I make this cake again, I'll definitely try the Dulce de Leche Whipped Cream. I'm pretty sure that Caramel Whipped Cream would work equally well. As you can see, there are lots of options! :o)

35 comments:

  1. Ooo, die ziet er lekker uit :-)

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  2. despite your cake shrinking at the sides, it looks perfect to me after you frosted it! I love how you frost the cake..the top swirl so beautiful!

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  3. I agree with faithy here, it looks wonderful with the swirls!
    As far as I can tell now I do like the things you guys bake from this book.... maybe I do need another baking book after all? (Oh boy I keep adding books to my wishlist)

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  4. WoW...this looks beautiful! I agree the cake itself is pretty ugly and you did a great job hiding that!

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  5. Oh and i like the pastry cream idea...it must've tasted delicious with the cake!

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  6. What a great twist to the original! Kudos for thinking OUTSIDE the baking box!

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  7. Hey Hanaa, I haven't been by in a while, but I should have. This cake sounds wonderful, and I never would have known about any problems by looking at the header photo-lovely.

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  8. Hanaa, what a delicious and wonderful looking cake. You conquered every obstacle and what a fantastic end dessert! I LOVE it! I have not baked a chiffon cake myself and now I want to.

    Now, if you want an extra challenge, I have 10 sourdough starters to get done today. I am thinking 8 different kinds of bread and 2 pizza recipes with the 2 Italian starters. I am sooo regretting getting excited about all the sourdough starters at Sourdough international!

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  9. Wawooooowwww, so beautiful, very delicious, you are "un CHEF"!!

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  10. Wow, that is one stunning cake Hanaa! The frosting is so shiny and you've decorated it beautifully. Frosting cakes is not one of my strong points... Thanks for your sweet comment about my pie. No worries about not baking this week :)

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  11. Love your variations--chocolate was on my list of flavors that would go well with this cake, too, and your pastry cream looks luscious!

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  12. MMMmmmm.....this sounds so good! I love the idea of chocolate.

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  13. ב''ה

    That looks great! The pastry cream seems like it would go nicely.

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  14. pastry cream--what a great idea! you did a wonderful job of dressing up the frumpy cake and glad that you didn't have any gummy spots!

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  15. www.aspecialcake.blogspot.coomApril 26, 2010 at 8:32 PM

    I had a good laugh when i saw the shape of the cake... (sorry). Next time you need to make a volcano cake, you'll know exactly what to do! :)
    Isn't it fun that in spite of the glitch you were able to turn into something so highly rated, and so DELICIOUS looking? good job!

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  16. I'm laughing out loud. Your gorgeous swirl chocolate glaze covering a multitude of strange goings on -- I posted the same caving in this morning with the pistachio cake. But all's well that ends well and my husband and guests never knew what it had looked like coming out of that oven. lol. joan

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  17. That cake looks incredible! I love coffee, so I'm sure I'd love this cake. I wish I had more time/occasion to bake cakes, it seems like every recipe from that book is fantastic.

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  18. Hanaa, very creative using pastry cream. And I love love love the swirls. Looks perfect!

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  19. I love the way you decorated the cake :)

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  20. This is one beautiful cake. You know how to make them pretty.

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  21. Your cake looks absolutely beautiful and so elegant; I have baked from Rose Levy Beranbaum just about every single recipe from her previous book the cake bible and am looking forward to that one.

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  22. Aren't we all a little "ugly" when we're naked?

    :)
    ButterYum

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  23. Hanaa, thank you for visiting the fried chicken, my weakness! and thank you for congratulating Ashley on her first job - she is soooo excited. I am happy for her too.

    Your Mom is coming to visit? Did I get that right? WOW! You have to be thrilled! The brownie recipe is cake like and bakes in a jellyroll pan. Fast, easy, moist and has a frosting you put on while the brownies are still hot. Click on this link and the link will take you to my recipe at Group Recipes.
    http://www.grouprecipes.com/8902/died-and-gone-to-heaven-brownies.html

    Hope you are enjoying Spring and talk to you soon, Shandy

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  24. You sure know how to finesse a recipe, Hanaa! I've never used the flower nail baked in the pan with the cake, but have heard of doing this in a pinch. Looks like you worked with things to produce another delicious result. I love the coffee aspect, too. Yummy!

    :) Jane

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  25. Hanaa, what a delicious idea! I just finished making a ganache that I could dip half of a peppermint candy in to see what happens. I don't know if the candy dough would be to sticky or not but maybe using powdered sugar for dusting to keep the stickiness at bay could work. I'll have to think about that one. The coloring and flavor would be gorgeous on a cake. Happy Saturday Hanaa!

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  26. Very creative way to bake this chiffon. I have never dared to bake one before, but you have inspired me!

    jessyburke88@gmail.com

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  27. Hanaa, I did receive your email. I just found it and what a great way to finish up my Sunday evening!

    I will be posting one right back to you soon. Thank you Hanaa and I hope your Monday goes smoooooth, Shandy

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  28. Hanaâ, my dearest (long-lost) baking/blogging friend,

    Where do I begin? I guess the best place to start is to say I MISS YOU so very much, and you have been on my mind forever (despite my recent disappearance from the blogosphere/internet). My deteriorating health has certainly gotten the best of me these last few months, and unfortunately, becoming bedridden has precluded having any fun in the kitchen! BUT, I'm working really hard to build back up my strength, and get back into the swing of things with both baking and blogging. I'm pleased to report I rejoined SMS this week with the Peanut Butter truffles, and I can't tell you how good it feels to reconnect with everyone. But I can say without a doubt, there is NO ONE more important for me to get back in touch with than you! Did I mention how much I've missed you?

    I would really love to hear how you've been doing, what you've been up to, and maybe a little about your recent kitchen adventures too :) Your latest cake looks absolutely gorgeous with that satiny chocolate glaze (I'll have to get that recipe from you)- those swirls on top are so elegant! I've never made a chiffon cake either, but I've always wanted to try. I'm interested in the tip about utilizing a flower nail- very intriguing- you always share the most fascinating helpful hints, and it's those little extra steps that can make all the difference between something really good, and something truly phenomenal.

    So I have no idea if you're still interested, but I've been thinking a lot about our special ATK FBB series, and was wondering if you might want to start it up this month? I know it would be a blast to work on a project like that together, but I would understand if you've changed your mind about it. Just let me know when you get a chance, and maybe we can move forward with selecting our first recipe.

    Here I go leaving an absurdly long comment again... it's just been so long, there's plenty I want to tell you! I probably should have emailed, but since I changed my address, I didn't want you to think it was junk mail by accident. You can feel free to write any time... it's always an absolute pleasure to get one of your very thoughtful messages! Here's the new address (it might look familiar) hotovenwarmheart@gmail.com.

    Hope all is well with you and you're having a great start to your week! Look forward to hearing from you soon :)

    <3,
    Joy

    P.S.- Were you looking for something to make with golden syrup? I might be mistaken, but if you still have some of that ingredient leftover, do I have a recipe for you! If so, I'll give you all the details ASAP!

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  29. What a gorgeous and elegant cake! I love reading about what you've been baking; you're such an inspiration and the source of so much good information. So I feel a little weird asking this question, but do you think not using the angel food cake pan was why your cake had that funny shape? It may have need the extra structure.

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  30. I am going to make the Orange-Glow Chiffon Layer cake tomorrow, but I only have a "non-stick" 9 inch springform pan.
    Will this work? or should I go find one? I did not notice that the recipe specified about this.
    Barbara

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  31. @barbara: a 9" non-stick spring form pan should work. I believe the Orange Glow Chiffon cake recipe specifies a 9" pan. Just make sure you use UNbleached flour and a flower nail in the middle. If you don't have either, I would bake this in a Bundt or other tube pan to avoid problems with the cake's structure. Good luck and let me know how it turns out :o)

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  32. The Orange-Glow Chiffon layer cake came out perfect! Looked just like the pictures in the book! I went out and got the regular pan, already had the nail and the fabric bands to put around the pan.

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  33. @barbara: that's great news, Barbara. Thanks for getting back to me on that. Will you be posting any pictures of it on your blog?

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