Sweets

CARAMEL APPLE PIE BISCUIT

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GENERALLY speaking, food makes people happy.

I’d like to think that I make happy foods.  I’d like to think that to the people wondering to this place, who are just one kale salad-away from opening a suicide.word, a fast responding blueberry oatmeal cookie, in some ways, is a contribution to humanity.  I’d like to think that to you out there who voluntarily devotes to a gluten-less life, though beyond my shallow comprehension, must have had your profound and keen purposes… the unintentionally gluten-free mochi donut is my gentle way of saying, I don’t get it but hey let me get you a donut.  Then of course, when all else fails, the sky is falling and all balls are tucked, a full frontal of a pornographic burger wouldn’t be the worst thing to remember last, before quitting it, whatever it is, all together.

But this theory has been testing quite unsoundly in my personal life-lab in the past week (previously on…), mostly due to my neurotic anxiety who has a very inappropriate humor of its own which has proven to be funnier than eating.

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Just to be clear, this is not where I brag about thing, but I’ve been cruising effortlessly through the most successful and effective, week-long fasting program that normally only Beyonce can pull off, and finding it a little… bittersweet.  This would have otherwise been a great news, a long-planned and awaited reunion with my dormant human-shapes, unfortunately just not in the optimal scenario as I envisioned it.  Don’t get me wrong, waistline, you look fabulous but fuck I look like shit.

MY ANXIETY… HAS A VERY INAPPROPRIATE HUMOR OF ITS OWN

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So in a desperate effort to restore such theory, I’ve embarked on a mission to make the happiest food alive.  Given that this is high pie-season, what’s better than something that, even just by the sound of its name, incandescently cheerful – the all American apple pie.  Hey, I figured if it’s happy enough to have sex with, it’d be sufficient for my condition.

But having said that, I have to be acutely aware of the danger of what a pie-making disaster can do to a fragile state of mind.  These crusty, happy-sounding fellas can be, more often than not, little mean soggy bi-polar bastards.  Best not to go there for the sake of my livelihood.  Instead, I’m going to impose the happy ideal of an apple pie onto these much faster, easier, and above all else, less disaster-friendly folks.  I’ve decided to turn it into biscuits.

So there I found myself in a gloomy, bleakly spirited afternoon, clinging over the edge of the kitchen-counter gulping down dose after dose of buttery crumbed biscuits that are sweetened with salted caramel and twinkle-lighted with soft, candied apples and warm cinnamon, allspice and nutmegs.  Then it occurred to me that, no, I needed something even more potent.  So I brushed them with melted butter and tumbled in nutmeg sugar.  At this point they were already reaching heavenly goodness but I was a holier mess, and I kept thinking that it just… just needed a litttttle something more…  What is it?  God damn it I had it at the tip of my tongue…

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Then OH RIGHT!   Of course.  Silly me.

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Makes: 7 small biscuits

Ingredients:

  • Caramel apple/wet ingredient:
    • 1/2 cup (154 grams) of granulated sugar
    • 1/4 cup (61 grams) of apple juice
    • 1 1/2 cup (185 grams/approx 2 small apples) of small-diced baking apple
    • 1/4 tsp of sea salt
    • 1/8 tsp of ground cinnamon
    • 1/8 tsp of ground allspice
    • 1/8 tsp of freshly grated nutmeg
    • 1/4 cup (60 grams) of apple juice
    • 1/4 cup (58 grams) of heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cup (212 grams) of all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tbsp of aluminum-free baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp of baking soda
  • 5 1/2 tbsp (80 grams) of unsalted butter, very cold and diced
  • 2 tbsp of melted butter for brushing
  • 1/4 cup (77 grams) of granulated sugar + 1/8 tsp of freshly grated nutmeg for surface

To make the caramel apple/wet ingredient:  In a sauce pot, bring 1/2 cup of granulated sugar and 1/4 cup of apple juice to a boil over medium heat.  Swirl occasionally and continue to cook until the liquid has evaporated and the sugar becomes a rich, dark amber color.  This will take a few minutes.  Then add the small-diced apples and continue to cook over medium heat.  The caramel will harden in contact of the cold apples, so stir with a spoon until all the caramel is melted again.  Cook until the liquid/juice from the apple has mostly evaporated, and the sauce slightly thickens again, approx 7 ~ 10 min.  You should have what looks like about 1/4 cup of liquid in the pot, and the apples should be almost translucent, like candied.

Stir in the sea salt, ground cinnamon, ground allspice, and freshly grated nutmeg.  Then add another 1/4 cup of apple juice and heavy cream.  Mix evenly then chill for at least 1 hour in the fridge, or 30 min in the freezer until cold.

To make the biscuit:  Preheat the oven on 425ºF/220ºC.

Whisk all-purpose flour, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl (or you can do it in the food-processor).  Add the diced and cold unsalted butter, then with a pastry-cutter, cut the butter into the flour until the largest bit is about the size of a small pea (or pulse the food-processor until this happens, then transfer the mixture to a large bowl).  Add the chilled caramel apple/wet ingredient, then with a spatula, fold the mixture together until a wet dough forms.  The dough should be wet and sticky.  If it’s too dry with loose crumbs and flour not coming together, add another tbsp of heavy cream.

Transfer to a floured surface and pat into 1″ (2.5 cm) thickness.  If the dough feels warm or even room-temperature (due to the wet ingredient not being chilled enough), wrap in plastic and flash-freeze for 30 min before proceeding.  Cut the biscuits out with a small cutter, then transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Gather the scraps and cut again.  You should have about 6 ~ 8 biscuits.  Brush the top with heavy cream then baking in the oven until golden browned and puffed, approx 15 min.

Allow to cool for 20 ~ 30 min on a cooling rack.  Brush the tops with melted butter then gently press against the nutmeg-sugar until it sticks.  If you want to slice it open for ice-cream sandwich, use a serrated knife because these are quite delicate.

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SELF-MADE SOUR CREAM GELATO


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IT IS Fourth of July.  You’re busy.  I know.  But just let me squeeze in a couple minutes of your time because if you missed this, it would be the second greatest mistake of your life for we all know that the first in rank is always some hair cut (can’t beat that).  Guys… this is your emergency Independence Day dessert.  A discovery made after a kitchen-mistake of historic proportions, and in corresponding spirit of this holiday, proves again that greatness is often times a by-product of bad ideas.  And this, this is the greatest thing that’s ever happened after the establishment of long weekend.  What it is, is a gelato.  Not any gelato, but the creamiest, virtually zero air-molecules or ice-crystals gelato, that makes itself.

THREE INGREDIENTS → YOU WHISK → IT FREEZES → THAT’S IT!

It can be the base for any gelato flavour imaginable.  No machine, churning, whipping cream or whatsoever!  And it will look, feel, slide, melt and taste like the magic that it is.  Go.  Celebrate.READ MORE

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BROWNIE-COW POPSICLES

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 SHUT UP, SHUP UP, SHUP UP

Let’s play a game, shall we?

Let’s see how much of my babbling you can withstand before you say “shut up, shut up, shut up!” and burst into the kitchen to make yourself one of these milk and any-brownie, or as I call it, brownie-cow popsicles?

Right, so you see here’s the thing.  I kinda love Earth.  Maybe not enough to tie myself to a tree per se, but I do love Earth enough that I have more bicycles than mascaras, and I haven’t had myself an ungodly orgasmic piece of toro, for like more than three years now.  And believe me, I do love my ungodly toro.  But there’s something else I love dearly as well…  In the light of summer-days when reality strikes, I realized that I do also hold high regards for… a dry butt crack.  Yes, yes they do come loose-fit, oversized, or wet, and I daresay, more frequently so, since a few years ago when we decided to live in this particular apartment-complex in Beijing.  Little did I know that Earth and my butt crack were set on a collision course.

You still there?

Right, so where was I?  Yes, dry butt crack.

You see here’s the thing, as mentioned before, the apartment-complex we live in is supposed to be really “green”.  Whatever that means…  There’s no heater in the winter, or air-conditioning in the summer because the temperature inside the entire 10 ginormous buildings are monitored by… well, a “greener” system of some sort.  Or at least as I was told, at a time before I learnt my lesson about China, and still believed what I was told.  Awww…  So we moved in, with good-will kicking and feel-good blazing, we, were gonna save earth, one lease at a time.

Then came the lesson.  Never.  Never.  And I mean neeeevah, believe what you are told in China!  Four excruciatingly warm summers later, we are looking more medium-rare than “green”, still melting inside our boxer-briefs, extra-large-holes tank tops, and our butt cracks… feeling wet my friend.  Feeling wet.

Heh… hello?  Right, there you are.

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So why haven’t we moved you ask?  If you were still here to ask questions…  Well that’s a very kindly irresponsible thought for you to have I mean, what kind of earthlings are we if we were to bail on our promises just because we feel like we were brushed with meat-glue every time we hug?

Icecap-Jack, you melt.  I melt.

So perhaps you should know that… hey, you there?  I’m talking to you!  Right, so you should know that heat tends to do things to weak minds… the other day when I literally risked my sanity and as a result, Jason’s well-being, by boiling a huge pot of stock for 4 hours which turned our lukewarm bitchy beachy apartment into a steaming mind-bending crater of active volcano, I think I hallucinated a lil’bit.

I drifted to the nearest Cold Stone joint, took off my boxer-brief and sat my steamy butt-crack right on top of their sub-zero slab of freezing stainless steels…  Tssss~ aaahhh… like a steak on grill, now this is where my cheeks belong…  And then, only then, somebody came and handed me my go-to combo – sweet cream base with mashed brownies.

That’s it.  Nothing.  Else.  This is a purist’s Cold Stone and how it should be.  I peaked through my fingers to see the next guy ordering something as if the local candy store is unleashing a fuck-fest on top of his ice cream-cup, and got really, really bothered.  Get a room!  This is a family joint!  So I turned away and literally, with my ass chilling, I was about to dig into my…

… then I drifted right back to reality.  Pot.  Boiling.  Hot.  STEAM.  VOLCAAAANO!  See I have to take matters into my own hands…

Take a good brownie.  And I mean a good brownie, the dense… chewy, fudgy and chocolate-y brownie, and in this case, infused with Nutella.  Then break it into large chunks.  Force feed them to your popsicle molds, and if you don’t have any, some freaking paper cups!  Jam a stick in there, I don’t know, a chopstick for all I care, then pour milk that’s been thickened with sweetened condensed milk…  Up up up up, up riiiight there when it just fills the mold.  Then you freeze the bejeezus out of them!

Chewy gets chewier…  Fudgy gets fudgier…  Then we both get one and sit our asses down on a sub-zero freezer slab, and I’ll tell you about the other time when I…

Hello?….  You there?

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Makes:  10 popsicles

You don’t have to make your own brownie.  You can certainly use a store-bought brownie, with flavours to your likings to make these popsicles.  And if you want creaminess, you can substitute whole milk with half and half.  Note that 3/4 cup of sweetened condensed milk is enough sweetness for my taste, but if you like a closer-to-commercial-level sweetness for your popsicles, use more.

Ingredients:

  • Nutella brownie:  adapted from Smitten Kitchen’s favourite brownies
    • 2 oz (60 grams) of bittersweet chocolate
    • 1 stick (115 grams) of unsalted butter
    • 1.5 oz (45 grams) of nutella
    • 1/2 cup + 3 tbsp (163 grams) of granulated sugar
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
    • 1/2 tsp of flaky sea salt
    • 2/3 cup (120 grams) of all-purpose flour
  • To make the popsicles:
    • 1 1/2 cup of whole milk
    • 3/4 cup (230 grams) ~ 1 cup (306 grams) of sweetened condensed milk

To make the nutella brownie:  Preheat the oven on 350ºF/175ºC.

In a microwave-proof bowl, add the bittersweet chocolate and unsalted butter.  Microwave on high at a 30-seconds interval, stirring the mixture in between, until just melted (you’ll need approx 1:30 ~ 2 min).  Whisk in the granulated sugar and large eggs until thick and even, then add the vanilla extract and sea salt.  Whisk again until even. Add the all-purpose flour, fold the mixture together with a spatula until there is no flour-lumps left.  Pour the batter into a parchment-lined, 8″ square-pan or round-pan.  Bake in the oven for 25 min, until a wooden skewer comes out with moist crumbs from the center.

Let the brownie cool for 30 min.

To make the brownie popsicles:  Break the brownies up into large chunks (you’ll need about 2/3 of the brownies).  Lay a couple of pieces at the bottom of the popsicle-mold so the wooden stick has something to rest on, then insert the wooden stick.  Fill the empty space loosely with more brownies until they reach to the top.  Repeat with the rest.

Combine whole milk and sweetened condensed milk together, and warm in the microwave just enough for the sweetened condensed milk to dissolve (if not fully dissolved, the sweetened condensed milk will float to the surface during freezing).  Whisk the mixture together to make sure it’s fully incorporated, then pour the milk into the popsicle-molds until it fills to the top.

Freeze for at least 6 hours to overnight until hardened (in my experience, the popsicles always feel a bit soft right after they are removed from the molds, so once hardened, keep them removed and wrapped in plastic-wrap instead of inside the molds).

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THE PETROVSKY POPSICLE

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DON’T WE NEED OUR RELATIONSHIPS
WITH A LITTLE BIT OF MILK

I DON’T know if this will completely sack my credentials (AGAIN) as an angry, opinionated love-cynic who just fell asleep when you mentioned the words “my ex-boyfriend’s facebook…”.  I’m not even sure if this is a well-adviced public statement for anyone who isn’t fabulously gay.  But this is probably as important to know about me as acknowledging the fact that I eat canned sardines in tomato sauce over oatmeals, that I also have a decade-long, still on-going, life-threatening addiction for… Sex And The City.

The key point in what I just said, is on-going.  Like, seriously.  You’d think that no one can be addicted to something that no longer exists.  It’d be like trying to smoke a cigarette butt, found underneath the bookshelf, that’s accidentally dropped in diesel.  You just can’t smoke that shit anymore.  Oh, but I can.  Since its last season ending in 2004, I had been waiting and watching every season that re-runs in turns on HBO on-demand every months, repeatedly, until 2008 when I left New York.  Then I had to purchase the complete-seasons DVD to continue watching every single episodes that I’ve continuously watched for however long…

Don’t even get me started on the movies.  I mean the second one gave me a bad trip but where the fuck is my third?

Think what you will about me… it’s probably all true…  And as if what I just said wasn’t lame and pathetic enough, allow me to kick it up a notch.  I’ve made myself…

the Petrovsky popsicle.

It’s an intensely black-tea-flavoured popsicle that’s sweetened with cherry preserve which also give it a slight tang. I was told, by a character from a TV-show that ended 10 years ago, that it’s how the Russians sweeten their teas, and I never doubted it for a second.  The idea stayed inside my head for all this time, until a week ago when I purchased my first set of popsicle molds, the Russians invaded.  If you’re into tea-flavoured everything, you’ll have the hots for these this summer.  I did Petrovsky justice by powdering the tea leaves to embolden the flavour and adding an entire jar of sour cherry preserve with large chunks of cherries.  These popsicles are cold, black and caffein-charged with hidden tang and sourness inside their hidden pockets like the character himself.  But of course, mellowed out with whole and sweetened condensed milk.

Because don’t we all “need our relationships with a little bit of milk”.  Even if it’s an icy one.

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Makes: 8 ~ 9 popsicles

The black tea leaves is powdered in spice-grinder to give the popsicle a very intense tea-flavour.  It’s a good trick for maximizing tea-flavour in any recipes (such as this cake).  If you don’t have a spice grinder, you can sort of “fake” one with this trick.  Or, you might have to use more tea leaves to brew a stronger base for this recipe.  I used 6 tbsp of sweetened condensed milk for this batch of popsicle and found the sweetness on the mild side, making this a more “refreshing” popsicle than a “creamy” one.  You can increase the sweetness and creaminess by adding more if you like.

You can definitely use other types of fruit jams/preserves that you like, or trying to use up for this recipe.


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Ingredients:

  • 4 tbsp (23 grams) of Assam black tea leaves
  • 2 1/2 cups (610 grams) of whole milk + another 1/2 cup (120 grams)
  • 3 tbsp of cornstarch
  • 1 cup (240 grams) of black cherry, or sour cherry preserves
  • 6 tbsp ~ 1/2 cup of sweetened condensed milk

Powder the Assam black tea leaves in a spice grinder until finely ground.  Mix the tea-powder into 2 1/2 cups of whole milk in a pot, and set over medium heat.  Once the milk has come to a very gentle simmer (careful not to scorch the milk), turn off the heat immediately and let steep for 1 min, then strain the milk-tea through a fine sieve into another pot (to eliminate any large tea leaves).  Whisk the cornstarch together with 1/2 cup of milk, then whisk it into the milk-tea until it’s slightly thickened.  Then whisk in black cherry (or sour cherry) preserves and 6 tbsp of sweetened condensed milk until even.  Add more sweetened condensed milk to adjust the sweetness if needed.

Divide the mixture into popsicle molds and freeze until hard.  Enjoy.

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MOCHI DONUTS

” YOUR SKINNY JEANS
WILL SELF DESTRUCT IN 30 MIN.

THIS MESSAGE WON’T.

THIS, may come as a surprise to hear.  Or not… judging from how you rationalize things.  Well, let’s just say based on the look of things on this blog, this will come either as a gasping surprise, or, as the most obvious conclusion to any.  But what I’m trying to tell you, and this is a true story, is that every night before I go to sleep, the ever-last thought that I’m either saying or thinking before drifting into oblivion is alway this…

#$#$^@#!! I swear I’m gonna go on a fucking diet.

It’s true.  You see the thing is, I’m a side-sleeper.  And side-sleepers feel things.  Things that, with all due respect, back-sleepers wouldn’t necessarily feel so bluntly and graphically and that is, the horror upon realizing that my gut can move freely in 180 degree angle, and rest soundly on the mattress like a soft pouch of cottage cheese.  Did you know this about my gut?  Why am I always the last to know…

I’m telling you this because I want you to know that I am not beyond reasons.  I’m aware of the normal shape of things for a humanoid, and I have acknowledgement of the ancient nutritional pyramid built by aliens to assist mankind, I swear.  There was a lemon-olive-oil-pasta-thingy that was supposed to be here today to demonstrate that I’m well-balanced and eat vegetables.  I don’t know what happened to that.. maybe because, purely guessing, that it didn’t taste as good as this donut.

Right, this is a baaad donut.  A very gooood, bad donut.  I had a sun-dress that just arrived in mail and I got very angry at it, if you know what I mean.  And you would believe me when I say that I would not surrender my prospect into a spaghetti-strap sun-dress this summer, just over any donut, wouldn’t you?

No, no I won’t, because this is not just any donut.

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DEVILS ON HORSEBACK ICE CREAM

“IF YOU GOT SOMETHING AGAINST SWIMSUITS… THIS IS A GOOD WAY TO TALK EVERYONE ELSE OUT OF IT”

WOW… I mean… just WOW…  I know it looks like I should be addressing my every bit of amazement to this fine specimen of frozen dessert right now, which really doesn’t need anybody’s introduction to be quite honest I mean look at it.  But I’m actually, with all my fingers involuntarily shaking, not focused on the ice cream just then.  Truth is, I’m still hung over, mentally taken hostage, emotionally robbed by the malfunction of this blog that has turned a rarely beautiful Beijing weekend into 48hrs of computer science-nightmare (if you came here during the weekend and found “the fridge” empty, I’m sorry).  It was a crisis so beyond the language that I speak it almost felt Sci-Fi, like an alien invasion, a fire-breathing Godzilla attack on the island of Java-script-what-eh?  I’m ashamed to admit that under the complete chaos and panic, I was so close… this close… like one-push-of-a-red-button away to just wiping everything I’ve done and everything you guys have ever said in the past 10 days, in the effort to restore control…

I almost nuked it…  I almost ground-zeroed my blog…

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ROLL WITH CHAMOMILE WHIPPED CREAM

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SOFT, SWEET, AND
ELEGANTLY FRAGRANT

UPON the realization that the previous few posts have been excruciatingly long and possibly obnoxious, I feel like today is a good day… to shut the hell up to let the recipe speak for itself.  And what’s better than to do it with a simple gorgeous cake? This is a soft, sweet and elegantly fragrant yellow sponge cake-roll hinted with almond flour, and filled with chamomile infused whipped cream.  Lost for words?  I know I am.

 

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Chamomile is a very popular tea in China, usually served with a bowl of Rock sugar on the side, which is also called “ice sugar” in Chinese.  It is a common and preferred sweetener for teas and cooking in Asia, which is not as sweet as typical granulated sugar, and many would argue that it brings a honey-like, more complexed sweetness without unwanted flavourings.

The almond flour I used is made with Chinese southern almond, which has a much stronger aroma (resembling bitter almond and almond extract) that I love.  There’s a more extensive post on that.  You can buy Chinese southern almond and grind it in a food-processor like I did, or use normal almond flour if you prefer.  But let me just say that the aroma of Chinese southern almond pairs beautifully with chamomile.

* I used a slightly larger baking-sheet than suggested in the recipe, and as a result, I felt like the sheet-cake was too thin.  So use a baking-sheet as suggested in the recipe, or smaller.

Ingredients:

  • Chamomile whipped cream:
    • 1 cup (240 grams) of heavy cream + 1/4 cup (60 grams) extra
    • 1/4 cup (8 grams) of chamomile 
    • 2 tbsp (30 grams) of rock sugar
  • Yellow sponge cake: roughly based on Bouchon Bakery
    • 2 large eggs
    • 3 large egg yolks
    • 1/4 cup (85 grams) of honey
    • 1/4 cup (50 grams) of granulated sugar
    • 1/4 cup (32 grams) of all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 cup (28 grams) of almond flour/almond meal (preferably Chinese southern almond)
    • 2 1/2 large egg whites
    • 2 tbsp of granulated sugar

To make the chamomile cream:  Combine 1 cup of heavy cream, chamomile and rock sugar in a pot and set over medium-low heat.  Gently stir, and turn off the heat just before the cream comes to a simmer, then let it steep for at least 5 min until the cream has turned light-yellow.  Drain through a fine sieve, and press on the chamomile to extract as much cream as you can then discard the chamomile.  Chill the chamomile cream until very cold (or to speed it up, place in the freezer and stir occasionally until very cold).  Meanwhile make the yellow sponge cake.

To make the yellow sponge cake:  Preheat the oven on 350ºF/170ºC.

With a handheld-mixer or a stand-mixer with whisk-attachment, beat large eggs, egg yolks, honey and granulated sugar together until very thick and velvety (scrape down the bowl once in between).  The mixture should form large ribbons when the whisk is lifted, approx 8~10 min.  Sift the all-purpose flour and almond flour directly into the bowl, and gently fold the mixture together until even with a spatula.  Wash and dry the whisk thoroughly.  Then with another clean bowl, beat 2 1/2 large egg whites and 2 tbsp of granulated sugar with the clean whisk, until glossy with soft peaks, approx 2~3 min.  Add half of the beaten egg whites into the egg yolk-mixture, gently stir until evenly combined.  Then add the remaining egg whites, and fold it in gently with a spatula.

Line a baking sheet, about 15″ × 11″ (38 × 28 cm), with parchment paper and rub the surface lightly with butter.  Pour the cake-batter into the sheet and smooth the surface.  Bake in the oven for 13 ~ 15 min, until a wooden skewer comes out clean from the center of the cake.  Carefully transfer the sheet-cake to a cooling rack and cool completely.

To assemble the cake:  With a clean bowl and whisk, combine the chilled chamomile cream with another 1/4 cup of cold heavy cream.  Whip the cream until it holds its shape when the whisk is lifted.  Smear an even layer of whipped chamomile cream over the sponge cake, then carefully peel the cake away from the parchment and roll it from one side to the other.  The cake-roll may feel a bit soft at this point, which is why I like to wrap it firmly with the same parchment, and chill in the fridge until cold again before serving (dust with powdered sugar on top if you like).  It keeps in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

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CARAMEL ESPRESSO FLAN/BUTTER ROUX CAKE

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THE CAKE HAS VENTURED BEYOND CHEMISTRY, INTO THE REALM OF PHYSICS…

EVERY time I unearth a truly fantastic recipe out of the landslides of materials and inspirations that bury most of my time nowadays, regardless whether it is original or reinvented, I experience a flush of anxiety which I’d like to call the competitive blogging disorder. Symptoms include increasing heart-rates and twitching ankles, a not-exactly-little voice inside my ill-motivated head saying things that don’t exactly reflect my best, generous self.

Things like, gah I hope I’m one of the few living bodies on earth who know about his. Gah I must publish this recipe now, like right now!, like in any given second somebody else might hijack my discovery. Gah I hope when I Google “flan cake”, nothing, and I mean nothing… in the English-speaking world at least, would show up on the first page.

But of course, like most of my wishes nowadays, the answers from God-gle, are usually negative.

When I stumbled on an Asian baking-blog by accident last week, and discovered something called the “flan cake”, I thought ding-ding-ding! I mean after all, it isn’t everyday that I look upon a cake-recipe that has ventured beyond chemistry, into the realm… of great physics. A cake with two distinctively different layers that bake simultaneously, but magically self-separates. A cake that bakes on the laws of physics, that lighter mass in weight (in this case, the sponge cake-batter), will float above denser mass (in this case, the flan custard), and that there’s nothing you can do to sabotage it. It’s not just a failsafe cake. It’s an anti-fail cake. Guaranteed by science. How could I not be excited?

But of course as it turns out, like all other great ideas, God-gle already knew a few.

BUT again, a closer look into all the flan-cake recipes shown up on the research, my CBD relapsed. Not only that most of these recipes uses a cake-premix, but even the ones that don’t, involves the dull and tiresome sponge cake-method of using vegetable oil or creaming butter. Gah, I’m back! I could still be the first second third… number of handful people to tell you about this, ahem, awesome cake. Because. the true genius of this particular flan-cake lies not only on the magic of the two self-separating layers of flan and sponge cake, but also on the miraculous outcome of a butter-roux cake batter. Yes, a roux cake. The combination of the two wonders, a cocktail of miracles, from what I can tell, is still a relatively under-exposed secret.

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