Tag Archives: Vanilla

Deconstructed Lime Meringue Pie Cake

Confused by the title?

Lemme break it down for you.

What we have here is:

Vanilla Cake.

Lime Curd.

Graham Crumb.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream.

Essentially, what we have is pie… but in cake form. 

Let’s forget the resolutions for a day and eat this cake shall we?

lime meringue pie cake 2

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Ingredients

Vanilla Cake

1 1/2 cups self-rising flour (1 cup self-rising flour = 1 cup sifted all-purpose flour + 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder + 1/2 teaspoon salt)
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups granulated/castor sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

Lime Curd

2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
2 tsp finely grated lime zest
2 eggs
1/2 cup unsalted butter

Graham Crumb (totally just played around with proportions until I liked it. I encourage you to experiment too!)

1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup milk powder
2 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs (used separately from 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs)
4 ounces white chocolate, melted

Swiss Meringue Buttercream

5 large egg whites
1 cup granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
2 cups unsalted butter
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

How To

Vanilla Cake:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease cake pan of choice.

2. In a small bowl, combine the flours and set aside.

3. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

4. Add the dry ingredients in parts, alternating with the milk and vanilla extract, end with adding flour. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated, taking care not to overbeat. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the batter in the mixing bowl to make sure all the ingredients are well blended.

5. Carefully pour the batter into greased cake pan. Slap the bottom of the pan against a counter/floor to get rid of air bubbles. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan completely before handling.

Lime Curd:

1. Whisk sugar, lime juice, lime zest, and eggs together in a metal pot.

2. Place pot on medium low heat and gently whisk until mixture thickens.

3. Remove pot from heat and pour the curd through a sieve into a bowl to remove zest/chunks of egg.

4. Cover with saran wrap, making sure saran wrap touches surface of curd, and place in fridge until needed for cake assembly.

Graham Crumb:

1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F

2. Combine 1/2 graham crumbs, milk powder, cornstarch, sugar and salt in a bowl. Whisk to combine. 

3. Pour melted butter into bowl and use spatula to toss until evenly coated.

4. Spread the mixture on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Bake for 20 mins. Now you have clusters of crumbs.

5. Put the crumbs back into the bowl and toss with another 1/4 of graham cracker crumbs.

6. Pour melted white chocolate over the clusters and toss until evenly coated.

7. Place bowl in fridge, but toss the crumbs every 5 minutes. You are done when the white chocolate is hardened and no longer sticky.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream:

1. Combine egg whites, sugar and salt in a metal bowl of a standmixer over a pot of simmering water. Whisk constantly by hand until the liquid looks frothy and all the granulated sugar is dissolved.

2. Place bowl on standmixer and use wire whisk to whip the mixture on medium speed until you reach soft peaks. Then increase to high speed to reach stiff peaks. Mixture should be glossssssy.

3. Add butter in small chunks and continue whipping until all butter is dispersed and melded into the mixture. At some point your buttercream will look like it’s curdling – DON’T PANIC. It’s totally normal.

4. Switch over to paddle attachment and beat the buttercream to remove air bubbles.

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Rainbows For A Baby Shower

Breaking news: Turns out Connie did not fall off the face of the earth, though her lack of blogging activity in the past month has shown otherwise. She was found buried under a sea of textbooks and saved by a hunky Joseph Gordon-Levitt look-a-like. Luckily, she had a bar of chocolate with her which has been proven by specialists to be the reason for her survival today. 

Hi everyone!!!!! Did you miss me? Actually, you don’t have to respond to that, I already know that your answer is “YES!” 😛

First, I want to make a shout-out to Elephant! Thanks for checking my blog at least once everyday even though I’ve been MIA. It always makes my day when I see that I got 1 view from Ireland 🙂 Also, belated happy birthday!! I know I said that to you on your actual birthday already, but I wanted to say it again to make you crave cake. Cake is good, and you deserve good things in life.

Since the PB cupcakes that I posted over a month ago, I haven’t baked anything at all. (I should probably re-prioritize my life. Academics over baking just isn’t right.) So when my friend asked me to make a cake for her friend’s baby shower, I just had to say yes! It still shocks me when people ask me instead of trained pastry chefs to make their cakes! Needless to say, I was super excited. I was beyond ecstatic. 

My friend, was super flexible with her order and I loved working with her! She only asked for 2 things:

1. Vibrant rainbow colours for the interior
2. Not too much sugar (because the mom-to-be is diabetic)

The rest was up to me! To go with the rainbow theme, I decided to make the exterior of the cake look like the sky with white clouds and another rainbow. 

Even though I hated working with fondant for the beauty and the beast cake, I gave it another try. I used homemade fondant to make the clouds and the rainbow, it was much much easier than the first time around. 

Decorating the cake wasn’t the hard part and THAT was new to me. This time, baking the cake was the tricky part because I had to watch how much sugar I was using. Initially, I wanted to try using splenda to replace all the sugar called for in the cake. But I read some reviews and discovered that splenda imparts a chemical taste to baked goods. So to be on the safe side, I eliminated splenda from my plans. Next, I made a test batch of cupcakes where I cut out half of the sugar that was called for in the recipe. The result was a moist and fluffy cupcake that was still sweet enough to be enjoyed for dessert. I was so happy with the results that I did the same for the actual cake layers. 

Here’s where it got frustrating. I baked the cake layers with only half the sugar and the end result had a dense and sticky texture. What happened?!??!?!?! When I first took out the cakes from the oven, they were fluffy, then after cooling, they became almost rubbery. I felt like breaking and crumbling down. Maybe I’m just a very harsh judge of my own work, but I was not happy with how the cakes were. Unfortunately, I had no time and no more ingredients to start over, so I had to make due with what I had and hope for the best. 

When I received a text from my friend saying that everybody loved the cake and wanted to see more of my work, I felt SO relieved. That was the best news I heard all week. Lesson learned: never cut out half the sugar from a recipe because sugar is there for a reason. 

Here’s what the cake looked like on the inside!

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Caramel Pastry Cream Cake

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Last Thursday I forgot to record Bake with Anna Olsen. Dun dun dunnnn.

Something must’ve been really wrong with me because I NEVER forget about my favourite Thursday show. I can bet all my chocolate that I was abducted by brainwashing aliens. 

I usually set the recording the night before so that when I come home tired from work, I can sit back, relax and watch desserts be made. 

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I didn’t realize that I had forgotten until the second I got home. Right when I opened the door, I screamed, “OH NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.” It was a horrible horrible feeling.

My sister came running down the stairs and asked, “Oh my gosh, what happened?!?!”

I stared blankly into her face and tried to speak as calmly as I could, “I forgot to record Anna Olsen.”

My sister finally relaxed and said, “Geez, I thought it was something serious.” Then she started up the stairs again, leaving me in shock still.

“IT IS SERIOUS, BECKS!” I screamed after her. 

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Even though I couldn’t watch the new episodes, I needed my fix of desserts! So I watched a previous recording whilst eating an entire tub of ice cream! I wish I was kidding about the ice cream part.

I watched the pastry cream episode because it is one of my favourite ones! Anna made cakes and souffles with pastry cream which surprised me because my limited creativity only allows me to relate pastry cream with cream puffs. 

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This cake is the exact same one that she made on her show except I had mess ups and Anna didn’t 😛

My pastry cream wouldn’t thicken and my caramel was wayyyy too thick. Luckily my friends didn’t seem to care or notice. The caramel pastry cream filling was everyone’s favourite part of the cake! 

If you’re a caramel fan like I am, you must must make this cake! Just a warning though, this is a super long recipe with lots of different steps to make!

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Caramel Pastry Cream Cake

Vanilla Cake

 3/4 cup butter
1 1/3 cup sugar
3 whole eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cup cake and pastry flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk

1. Preheat oven to 350F

2. Cream butter and sugar together until light in colour and fluffy.

3. Add in the eggs one at a time, beat until increased in volume.

4. Add in vanilla.

5. Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

6. Alternate adding flour and buttermilk into the butter mixture. Begin and end with flour.

7. Bake in 8in pans for 25-35 mins. Allow cake to cool in pans for 20 mins. Then remove cake from pans to complete the cooling.

Pastry Cream

1 cup milk (not skim)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste (I left this out because I couldn’t find any, but I highly recommend that this be added!)
3 egg yolks
2 tbsp cornstarch
3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp butter 

1. Bring milk and vanilla paste to a simmer in a pot.

2. In bowl, whisk egg yolks, cornstarch and sugar together.

3. Gradually add the hot milk to the egg mixture and whisk constantly to prevent cooking of the eggs.

4.  Add the entire mixture back into the pot over medium heat. Whisk constantly until thickened to get pastry cream.

5. Place 2 tbsp butter into a bowl. Strain the pastry cream into the bowl. Stir until butter is melted and place saran wrap directly on surface of pastry cream to prevent a skin from forming.

6. Allow to cool at room temperature.

Vanilla Buttercream

3/4 cup butter
4 cups icing sugar, divided
6 tbsp milk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

1. Cream butter and 2 cups of icing sugar together

2. Add milk and vanilla. Beat in the rest of the icing sugar 

Caramel Sauce

1 cup cream
3 tbsp water
1 cup sugar
1 tbsp corn syrup

1. In a pot, add in water, sugar and corn syrup. Cook over med-high heat.

2. Do not stir !!! Let the mixture just cook until it reaches a nice amber colour.

3. Add cream and using a LONG handled whisk, stir to combine.

4. Set off heat to cool at room temperature.

Assembly 

1. Level off cakes if there are uneven surfaces.

2. Combine some caramel sauce into the pastry. I can’t give  you exact measurements, just make sure the mixture doesn’t get too runny, you need structure in your caramel pastry cream.

3. Place one layer of cake on a cake board. Pipe a ring of buttercream along the outside edge to create a dam.

4. Fill the space inside the buttercream ring with caramel pastry cream. 

5. Place the next cake layer on top. Pipe a buttercream dam again. Fill with caramel pastry cream. You should still have some caramel pastry cream left.

6. Place final cake layer on top. 

7. Spread buttercream on all surfaces of the cake. 

8. Pipe a decorative border on the top which is supposed to act as a dam as well.

9. Combine the rest of the caramel and caramel pastry cream and pour on the top. Ta-da! Now that wasn’t too bad was it 😉

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