I have just gone through some of the recipes I made but have not published on this blog yet. And I am now torn between blogging about something new or something old. I guess it won't really matter to you, so here's what I made last week for OCT's birthday. A Mango Cream Cake. Mango cake holds a special place in our household. We don't normally bake it because of the lack of good sweet mango here. And I also can't seem to find a reliable recipe on mango cake. The only time it graces our dining table is either OCT or my birthday.
These are time when I am more adventurous and not stress about the outcome. Unlike baking cakes for friends' birthdays when I have to pray hard for the cakes to turn out well. Luckily most of them request for chocolate cakes, which I am quite competent now. Our birthdays, as it turns out is the best time to experiment. To be fair, I did ask OCT what cake he wanted for his birthday. The answer was consistent all the time, and he said he only wanted mango cake. Even if there's a possibility of having an "inedible birthday cake". You can probably tell that OCT is quite a mango aficionado now.
With that in mind, I started to creat one cake based exclusively on trial and error. With the exception on the cake base. I used a base I had tried with good result before. Strictly speaking, I only need to get the mango cream filling and topping right to fulfill my husband's birthday wish. Even if it turned out miserable, I guess we can still scrap out the yummy cake base to eat.
Because I wasn't sure how much filling I would need, I ended up making a lot more than required. As a result, the birthday cake turned out having a bulging top.Maybe if I didn't try to be creative and used lady fingers to line up the pan and dropped in a can of lychee, there would be more room for the mango cream. But both the lady fingers and lychee proved to be worthy for the space they occupied. They just added so much interesting flavors to the cake.
For the decoration, I initially wanted to pipe "happy birthday" only. But then I melted too much chocolate and I didn't want to waste it. So it ended up on the cake, as you can see in the picture below. I simply pipe whatever I could think of. And the result was a casual and messy cake. I probably would have made the cake more formal and piped "OCT" instead of "Baby" if we invited other friends. But since it's just the two of us, I guess I can call him whatever I want. :)
Before OCT was home, I tied the cake with a satin ribbon, so it would look like a present. I feel rather guilty for not getting him anything because he always shower me with gifts on birthdays and anniversaries. Anyway, he said he wanted no present and a low key birthday. So I guess I have to grant the birthday boy his wish!
I am also submitting this mango cream cake as my entry for the latest edition of "Waiter, there's something in my....Layered Cake", which is hosted by Andrew of Spittoon Extra. Be sure to check out the round up later on Andrew's blog.
Mango Cream Cake
For the cake
2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 sticks(10 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup buttermilk
For the filling and topping ***(see note below for suggestions of the amount of ingredients used)
About 2 pounds of mango flesh
2 cups of heavy whipping cream
sugar to taste
2 packets of gelatin powder
1 can of lychee in syrup, with lychee drained and roughly chopped; reserve syrup
melted dark chocolate
To make the cake base,
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350F. Butter two 9x2 inch round cake pans, dust the inside with flour, tap out the excess and line the bottoms of the pan with parchment or wax paper. Put the pans on baking sheet.
Sift together the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Working with a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in
a large bowl, beat the butter on medium speed until soft and creamy. Add the sugar and beat for another 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one by one, and then the yolk, beating for one minute after each addition. Beat in the vanilla; don't be concerned if the mixture looks curdled. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients alernately with the buttermilk. adding the dry ingredients in 3 additions and the milk in 2 (begin and end with the dry ingredients); scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed and mix only until the ingredients disappear into the batter. Divide the batter evenly between the two pans and smooth the tops with a rubber spatula.
Bake for 28 to 30 minutes,rotating the pans at the midway point. When fully baked, the cakes will be golden and springy to the touch and a thin knife inserted into the centers will come out clean. Transfer the cakes to a rack and cook for about 5 minutes, then run a knife around the sides of the cakes, unmold them and peel off the paper liners. Invert and cool to room temperature right side up.
To make mango filling and topping,
Puree mango flesh with some sugar syrup from canned lychee. Taste and adjust sweetness accordingly.Pour out the pureed mango into a large bowl.
Sprinkle 2 packets of gelatin powder with 1/4 cup of sugar syrup from the canned lychee. Heat the mixture in microwave for 30 seconds until the gelatin solution dissolves and turns clear. Leave to cool slightly.
Using a stand mixer with whip attachment, beat whipping cream until stiff.
Slowly dribble gelatin solution into pureed mango.Stir to mix well. Set aside 1/2 cup of mango mixture in another medium bowl for topping. Fold some whipped cream into the remaining mango mixture to lighten. Continue to fold the remaining whipped cream thoroughly but lightly into the mango mixture.
Carefully place one cake layer on the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan or a cake ring. Brush the top of the cake with some sugar syrup from canned lychee. Scatter the chopped lychee on top of the cake.Brush one side of the lady fingers with the same syrup before lining them on the sides of the ring. Brushed side facing inward.
Carefully pour in the mango cream and top with the second cake layer. Brush the top with syrup. Pour the rest of the mango cream on top.Followed by the reserved topping.
Chill overnight before decorating.
***Note: you will have way too much mango cream using the above recipe.1 cup of whipping cream and 1 packet of gelatin powder, with the same amount of mango flesh (2 pounds) should yield a more intense mango flavored cream. Having said that, I have not tried out this combination yet.