I have contemplated, postulated and ruminated. Among all the chiffon cakes available on this planet, Pandan Chiffon Cake is still my favorite. Some classics never go out of fashion and with that conclusion, I shall bake Pandan Chiffon Cake again.
This time I am using another recipe and I wanted natural pandan juice. To extract the juice I hauled my Alpha Juicer out of hibernation and on to the tabletop. Good grief, that thing is heavy!
My pandan plant is doing just OK. I have two plants growing in pots and I notice that pandan grows much better on the ground. I did plant them on the ground before but they grew really big and bushy. So I had to pull them out.
I put the pandan leaves into the grinder and out came the juice.
But something went wrong with the pandan juice. And I don't want to talk about it. (***emo mode on***)
Chiffon cakes are a challenge to some people and to others it is a breeze. I have to thank my auntie for the hands on tutorial two years ago and so far, I have not had any problems with this cake. The two challenges in baking a chiffon cake are :
1. Beating the egg whites to stiff peaks; and
2. Folding the egg yolk and egg white batter.
Getting is right takes practice of course and a few tips here and there helps. With that in mind, I would like to humbly share my own tips and techniques to help those of you who have trouble with this cake. I am no expert and whatever knowledge that I possess have been culminated through bumbling around the kitchen and learning from my mistakes.
This is how I go about it.
1. I prepare the egg yolk mixture first.
|I had to use pandan essence and some green coloring.|
2. I use a whisk to beat the egg yolks with sugar until the mixture is well combined.
3. Then I add the coconut milk, coconut oil, pandan essence and green coloring. Whisk until everything is combined.
4. I sift the flour three times beforehand. Now I sift it two tablespoons at a time into the egg yolk mixture. Call me kiasu but this works for me.
5. What you get is a creamy and smooth mixture. If you find it clumpy, add a bit more coconut milk to smooth it out.
6. Now on to the egg whites. I sprinkle the cream of tartar onto the egg whites before beating.
7. Once the egg whites are frothy, add sugar bit by bit and continue to beat until the egg whites reach stiff peaks.
|The mixture can move when bowl is tilted. It is not stiff yet.|
|The mixture does not move when the bowl is tilted. This is stiff peaks.|
|If you have OCD, just turn the bowl upside down to assure yourself that the egg whites are stiff.|
|Just mix, don't care.|
|The egg yolk mixture is now lightened.|
11. To fold, I am very sorry, I use my bare hand. I can't do it with the whisk or spatula. Call me cacat but I find that hand method is the best. Your hand is gentle and you have control over the mixing because you can feel the mixture. Mix the two batters by gently folding from bottom up, bottom up, until you do not see any white or green streaks. Your batter once mixed should be uniformly green.
|See the white and green streaks? And my veins?|
|No more streaks. All green.|
|Ready to be poured into the chiffon pan.|
|This is before tapping. The batter is uneven.|
|Phew! Nicely baked.|
|Cooled and ready to be unmoulded.|
17. Now run your spatula/knife around the bottom of the pan. Flip the cake over a plate or cake board and it should dislodge nicely.
That wasn't so hard, was it? But I hate washing the pan. I have to soak it first and then scrub off the remnants of the cake. OK, on my pandan juice. Haiz....I was having runny nose that day and the pandan juice didn't smell like pandan. It had a green smell. I wasn't sure if it was just me or there is something wrong with the pandan. So I threw it away :(
I am using Sonia's recipe with a sprinkling of rice flour inspired by Kimmy. Sonia and Kimmy's recipe use less flour compared to the one given to me by my auntie. This yielded a very soft texture. I like it very much. I think I will use this adapted recipe from now on.
Pandan Chiffon Cake
Recipe source : Adapted from Nasi Lemak Lover
(for 8" pan)
- 5 egg yolks
- 60g sugar
- 80ml extra virgin coconut oil (or any neutral vegetable oil)
- 110ml coconut milk
- 1/2 tsp pandan essence
- some green coloring (use a bit at a time till you get the shade you want)
- 60g superfine flour ) Mix both flours
- 30 g rice flour ) and sift (I sift 3 times)
- 5 egg white
- 60g sugar
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
For the egg yolk mixture :
1. In a mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar with a whisk. Beat until the mixture is well combined.
2. Add coconut oil, coconut milk, green coloring and pandan essence. Whisk to combine.
3. Sift flour into the mixture bit by bit and fold into the mixture until well combined. Set aside.
For the egg white mixture :
1. Sprinkle cream of tartar onto the egg whites.
2. Using a hand mixer, beat the egg whites until frothy.
3. Add sugar gradually and continue to beat the egg whites until stiff peaks.
To mix the batters :
1. Take about 1/3 of the stiff egg whites and mix into the egg yolk mixture to lighten it.
2. Pour the lightened egg yolk mixture into the egg white mixture and gently fold the two batter together until combined.
3. Pour batter into the chiffon pan and bake at 160C for 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
4. Once bake, remove from oven and invert the cake pan.
5. Leave the cake to cool completely before unmoulding.
I am submitting this post to Bake Along #64-Chiffon Cakes Cakes hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours.