Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The cake that takes two days to make

         The cake that takes two days to make. The cake that takes two days to make. If you say it over and over again, it becomes a tongue twister.
         So what exactly is this cake that takes two bloody days to make, you might ask. You might even wonder if its really worth the trouble. The truth is, the cake that takes two days to make, or also known at Sugee Cake ( An almond semolina cake), is a pretty plain cake. Yet, everyone loves this cake and there is something deceptively delicious in its semi plainess. To be fair, its not really plain. Its hard to explain really. A german friend once called it my marzipan cake. I personally fell in love with it when I had it at a surprise party and my Eurasian friend's mother made it. It was divine.

       Imagine a cake that has a texture between a pound cake and a butter cake. Its moist, its crumbly yet sturdy and very aromatic. The smell is intoxicating. Its a heady mix of butter, semolina and almond all rolled into one. 

       Personally, I have tried making this many times and I think I finally have a winner. After much research, I combined two different recipes together. One is from Rose's Kitchen and the other is from a forum I found ages ago. If you happen to be the person who contriubted this recipe, I'm sorry I can't remember your name or where I got it from. If it looks familiar, I give you full credit! I modified both recipes quite a bit and created and ORANGE Almond Sugee cake. It has orange zest, peel and juice in the cake for an extra boost of flavour.

             Presenting to you my labour of love

Another view

             So what you are looking at is an Almond Orange Sugee Cake that is covered in homemade marzipan. Yes, I was insane enough to make my own marzipan. I coloured it orange, slapped it on the cake and made some red roses with the left over marzipan. My sister stepped in and made the vines and leaves and conceptualized the design. I thought it look rather pretty, if not slightly dated.

           Some process shots: Straight from the tin!

This is how it looks naked and undecorated. Still pretty damn tasty!

Then comes the glaze


All covered in Apricot Jam. I was too lazy to make the glaze or warm it or sieve it. Yes, yes, the elders frown upon me.

Now comes the money shot

And when you cut it open


Yes, its calorific. You will shudder if I told you how many eggs and how much butter and sugar went into the whole thing.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The great bake sale and children's day!

       I received an email from good old fellow baker Anna at the center where I teach, telling me that the company was holding a bake sale for the flood victims in the Phillippines so I said why not. I was given a day's notice and like a good samaritan, I produced the following:
                                     36 Tripple Chocolate Cupcakes                                

                                Yes, its a delectable and moist chocolate cupcake filled with large dark chocolate buttons and topped with a dark chocolate frosting. Piped to look like a rose because, lets face it, nothing screams seduction like a rose.

                                                     36  Strawberrylicious Cupcakes

                   These were made with real strawberries. Like a good peranakan, I pounded the strawberries by hand for both the cupcake and the frosting. Frosting was tricky to work with as it melted really fast. I had to add a lot more icing powder and then a little squeeze of lemon to counter the excessive sweetness. Topped with littlle heart sprinkles!
                    Then I remembered Anna asked me to make my Creamy Mushroom pie. So I produced

                             4 double crusts Creamy Mushroom pies. Pastry and Bechamel sauce both made from

                                 Sorry about the blurry shot. I was too so tired. And I overbaked the pies a little. The crusts were a little dry. Okay, too dry for my liking. Plus I used shortening instead of butter this time as I wanted a flakier crust. It definitely was flakier but not as yummy. But the filling was good. Brown and white button mushrooms sauteed with caramelized onions, slow roasted garlic smothered with a thick creamy bechamel sauce.

                       I was quite adventurous and made a 3.5kg Chocolate Whisky cake topped with a Bailey's Ganache, 54 mini cupcakes for the children that I teach at a chapel, another 80 double chocolate cupcakes and 42 strawberry cupcakes for the children in the center in a space of two nights.

                       Verdict: I am a good 1.5kg heavier due to constant taste testing and completely BAKED OUT. I don't want to see another cupcake or bowl of frosting in a long time.

                          In other news, PLEASE CHECK OUT MY NEW LOGO!

Yup, I finally had the cahonas to start my own bake site. IF you like the logo, its designed by good friend and colleague Carrie. She's amazing, with a degree in advertising design and like me, abandoned our fancy degrees to teach speech and drama! My site is still under construction so I won't shamelessly advertise just yet.