In the process of baking liangze’s birthday cake, I burnt some of the meringue.
He requested for Pierre Herme’s Concorde cake – basically layers of chocolate flavoured meringue sandwiching chocolate mousse. The mousse has more of a buttercream texture though, because it’s slightly leavened by egg whites whipped stiff. I am always thankful for the Kenwood mixer my mum saw fit to buy before I was born (for a hefty $1500 – and it’s still working perfectly today! Kenwood is always a great investment)
When it’s done pictures will be up. It’s a little finicky, and I don’t really like whipping no gelatin mousses in Singapore’s weather (it’s super humid now because it just rained a few hours ago, not to mention warm) – and the entire cake needs to sit in an odorless freezer for at least 2 hours. For those who don’t know, my house has two fridges, but both freezers are stuffed to the brim. I don’t know why my mum likes to stock up on frozen food. I really think living in America would suit her better – most of them have a deep freeze in the basement with all kinds of frozen food and meats and rainbow sherbet! Just last week I cooked a mee siam goreng that used some of the frozen prawns that have enjoyed my freezer for nearly 4 months.
The meringue rounds and rods are sitting in the oven drying out overnight before I remove them tomorrow when the mousse is ready. They taste ok, but a tad sweet. Also some of them were burnt because the oven time was 1.5 – 2 hrs, and I’m not about to plop myself in my kitchen for 2 hrs just watching the meringues to make sure they don’t burn when there’s Big Bang Theory to watch and so many other things to do! So burn some of them did, especially the thinner round. At least this cake has only two parts and is supposed to be easy peasy, plus I finally got to use some of that Madagascar cocoa powder I bought from Laurent Bernard during HK’s lunch treat.
Never made meringues before but I think this was a good attempt, and it also makes pavlovas seem quite accessible. My piping leaves much to be desired though, in making the rounds roughly flat.
The Ispahan cake was a bit disappointing, I will probably modify it with a good chiffon recipe, keeping the rose milk and the raspberries but removing the super heavy almond flour paste. By and large Lz’s family couldn’t taste that there was rose in it at all, but then again they do not have hound-like noses like me and my dad (in fact his mum is quite hard of smelling). My dad can sniff a morsel of food or a leftover can of any liquid (soup, dessert, milk) and tell you if it’s alright or if it’s gone bad and what exactly is wrong with it. The last time I had a suspect cup of soy milk (LZ and my mum thought it tasted perfectly fine) I gave it to my dad for his diagnosis and he could tell that they had blended part of the top layer that forms in soy milk production into the milk which gave it its strange taste. I always thought it was kind of a waste that he became a draughtsman instead of a sommelier – he’d be amazing just by dint of natural ability. I can tell when my mum has dropped an egg in the house (even after she’s cleaned it up, and she does not clean things shoddily) and exactly which room in which the egg broke. And also exactly what my mum has cooked for dinner before stepping into the house. It’s kinda difficult to live with the both of us complaining about bad odors all the time :P And you can just imagine how taking the MRT is like 100x more unbearable for me than for the average person, especially late in the day.