Starting off this post with a rainbow of Pierre Hermé Macarons specially hand-carried from Paris.
I had a blast catching up with Les, Zen and Marc on Sunday at Symmetry. Zen was the sweetest, surprising me with this collection of yummy macarons which he brought back from his flying around the world – Zen’s a flight attendant, so he’s always everywhere but nowhere! It was extremely lovely to see him even though he came to meet us just after his flight.
Our meeting was made all the more exciting because Zen and Marc got on really well despite never having met each other before. We all managed to make conversation, laugh and exchange our recent antics surrounding our lives, before Les and I scooted off while Zen and Marc went for wines and more chatter.
It’s always uplifting getting together with friends, especially ones we don’t meet as often. In this instance, I’m referring to dear Grace. Since Grace lives in Penang, we only see each other about once a year if one of us happens to be in the other’s city. This year, it was Grace who flew over to Singapore for her short Mumcation.
We managed to meet up on Monday together with Mum, to have a sumptuous lunch at my favourite dim sum restaurant – Imperial Treasure Nan Bei, before moving over to Toast Box for some coffee.
It’s always a joy for me to be able to see Grace. We first met online when we followed each other’s blog, and she was always a massive encouragement to me on my journey through ED recovery. She’s like a big sister I look up to and since knowing her, she has got married, had not-so-baby Sophie, and is now entering the final trimester of baby girl #2! In watching how Grace has evolved to a wife and mother, I know how possible it can be for me to one day have all of that too! I just need to stay focused on what I want, and stay strong no matter how weak I may feel.
Speaking of happy things, something else that made me happy was these two cakes I baked for a church aunty’s 70th birthday! She requested for a Mango Cake with Passionfruit and so, I tried my best to capture each step for those eager to know what goes into making and decorating a cake. I kind of forgot after the last picture of this series of Kitchen photos but I promise I’ll do better next time!
P.S. Recipes will all be towards the end of this blog post!
To begin with, I baked two Mango Sponge Cakes because Aunty Yoke Meng wanted to feed 50 people and ascertained that the initial 9×9″ cake I’d suggested simply wouldn’t be enough. So she asked for an extra 9×6″ one on the side. I obliged of course!
Since the cake was rather hefty, I made it a two-layer cake so it would be sturdy enough not to fall when cut and plated. I sliced each cake that I baked halfway horizontally to create the two layer, then as seen below, I spread a thin schmear of vanilla buttercream on the first layer, before piping a border around so that I could then spread on a generous amount of passionfruit curd without fear of it seeping into the cake, or overflowing out of the cake.
Place the top layer on gently and soak with soaking syrup.
Then again, a thin layer of buttercream just to keep everything together.
I finished off with a layer of curd with some drippy-action around the sides, and with my leftover buttercream, I practiced piping buttercream flowers for decoration. Of course, typical me did about 6 flowers and then all of them happily went on a trip to plant their faces onto my kitchen floor. I was a little annoyed because of all the effort I’d put in to piping them and very nearly wanted to switch to an alternative way of decorating the cake. Then I decided that perhaps I shouldn’t simply give up, perhaps it’ll make good practice in piping more flowers! And so I did…
The other flowers behaved themselves and sat quietly until I was finished with my piping. Then into the freezer they went to set before I used them to pretty up the cake.
Mango Sponge Cake with Passionfruit Curd (I’ve revised my recipe to make about an 8″ round cake)
10g Baking Powder
5g Baking Soda
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
65g Unflavoured Oil
200-250g Mango Puree
- Preheat oven to 170deg C and line an 8″ round baking tin.
- In a bowl, whisk dry ingredients together.
- In another bowl, whisk wet ingredients together to blend.
- Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour wet ingredients in. Whisk gently together to just until everything is incorporated.
- Pour batter into lined baking tin and bake for 45-50min or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Allow to cool before removing from tin.
For Passionfruit Curd:
200g Passionfruit Juice
2 Tbs Lemon Juice
- In a small saucepan, whisk all the ingredients together before switching from a whisk to a spatula.
- Place saucepan over low heat and keep stirring until mixture thickens enough to coat the spatula.
- Sieve into a clean bowl and wrap clingfilm directly over the top of the curd. Chill in fridge for 3 hours or more to cool
- Slice cake into 3-4 layers.
- Soak base layer with soaking syrup (I used a ratio of sugar:water 4:5). Spread a thin layer of buttercream over and pipe a border of buttercream around.
- Spread a generous amount of passionfruit curd over.
- Repeat with remaining layers then after the top cake layer has gone on top, mask entire cake thinly with buttercream. Then, freeze for about 15min.
- You may frost the cake with more buttercream to create a perfectly straight cake before freezing another 15min. Or you can keep it rustic and proceed onto the next step.
- Pour some more curd over the top and gently use a small stepped palette knife to run some off the sides to create a drippy effect.
- Keep chilled until ready to indulge!
Also, with the passionfruit curd, if you have some leftover, have it on toast or stay tuned for my next recipe which features the extra curd I had left after making these two cakes!
It was a pleasure making this cake for a 70th celebration. Reminds me of the slogan that I’ve always carried in my mind with regards to my love for baking – Where there is cake, there are always happy smiles! #truethat