Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Black Sesame Cake with Honey Cream

Happy Chinese New Year Eve everyone!
I am currently enjoying a slice of my Asian inspired flavor Black Sesame Cake.

I am truly impressed with how this cake turned out despite my long hiatus of making layered cake (and my doubts with this no oil/butter recipe). The steps involved are really simple come to think of it, but the final product certainly makes people think otherwise. To make this cake well, all you need is a fluffy and airy chiffon cake and some whipped cream with complementing sweetener/flavor. For this black sesame chiffon cake, a lightly sweetened honey whipped cream did a wonderful job to highlight the black sesame flavor and moisten the cake. (*Credit to the half-asleeped Fatty who suggested the honey!)

Unlike previous chiffon cakes I made, this recipe calls for black sesame paste and absolutely no oil or butter. I was skeptical on how this cake would turn out for many reasons:

  1. My old black sesame paste had a very distinct separation between oil and solids. I tried my best to stir as even as possible but I probably didn't do it so well. The oil was very minimal for a cake this size.
  2. Step #2: "Add flour and powder to yolk mixture and beat till increase in volume and thick/fluffy." Doesn't gluten form if you mix the flour too much and therefore create a tough/dense cake? The typical chiffon cake recipes I used usually ask to beat the yolk mixture to thick and fluffy first and just fold in the flour. I followed accordingly, and the mixture never increased in volume. I beat until it was thoroughly combined and left it alone. 
  3. The big crack and shiny top during baking. (which turned out to be nbd)
  4. The black sesame seeds which I thought was stale-ish and used as garnish. 

This black sesame chiffon cake definitely met and exceeded my lowered expectations. The sweetness level can't be any more right. The black sesame flavor was strong and not overwhelming. The dark grey/black color was beautiful. And most importantly, it was not dry and rather moist for a no oil/butter cake. The tighter crumbs made it easy to layer and cream. I did a light crumb coat first just to ensure a nicer finish. The final presentation was leaning toward a rustic feel than perfectly smooth finish which I have no problems with.

Black Sesame Chiffon Cake
recipe adapted from Foodagraphy by Chelle
makes one 6.5" chiffon cake

3 egg yolks
70g sugar (*reduced to 50g)
50g black sesame paste
50ml water
65g cake flour
22g black sesame powder
4 egg whites

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Lightly whisk together egg yolks, 20g sugar, black sesame paste and water.
(*Beat mixture till it increases in volume and become thick and fluffy)
3. Fold in cake flour and black sesame powder until well combined.
4. In a separate clean bowl, beat egg whites. When it is at foamy stage, gradually add in the sugar, with the beaters mixing constantly. Whip till stiff peaks to form meringue stage.
5. Fold in the egg whites in three batches into the egg yolks mixture.
6. Pour into chiffon molds and bake for 30 - 40 minutes.
7. Remove from oven. Invert immediately and leave to cool completely before removing from mold.

Honey Cream
1/2 pint whipping cream
2 packets honey (*next time: add 3-4 for more prominent honey flavor)

1. Beat cream on high until soft peaks.
2. Add in honey and continue beating until just under stiff peaks.

Top: whipped egg whites + black sesame flour mixture
Bottom: white folded into mixture
Before & after
Cooled, unmolded and flipped
layered and creamed!
messy crumb coat

Taste: 5 stars out of 5
Texture: 4.9 stars out of 5

the sleepy Fatty
Till next bake!

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