Friday, October 7, 2016

Swiss roll cake

That September up, packed and left me at the door infuriates me no end. Ninth month, where did you go? And how have you forgotten to take this script with you?

Is it me or has it been way too soon for the third season of the year to have whooshed it's way here? Blink.Blink.

For the some who may deem today's theme unfit for brand new cardiganweather( those of us in Desert/Skinmelt terrain, translate to midlength shorts, paired still with min. SPF50 ),  it's a guideline to a perfectly attainable superhero cake sans hero effort, any season you set your mind to.

Once I'm finished I'll have, hands down, won any argument you'd made up in your mind. So, then hear me through on this, if anything, it may very well solve your dessert dilemma for the night. 

Bakeries, that displayed The Geometric, equalsided petit fours, brilliant spiralled rounds, better yet, bright, bean -shaped buttercream sponges were places I considered of high reverence. Honestly speaking,  I ate my way through young adulthood, with a craving for pastries that would delight the eyes as well as my ever-increasing physical form. This would be that era where the 5-8(kg)  item intake, depended on mood, circumstance and how much moneyinpurse were THE determining factors of how gluttonous a day would turn out, hoping much that the dimension of my thighs would go unaffected( I was poster child for The Motivated Youth).

Several years and countless pounds later, I believe it is my calling to extol upon the virtues of just this. The only cake that would have me back for more. 

So, here we have the venerable Swiss roll, beauteous baked thin sponge, rolled and plugged, with fillings which would not only have you spin cake, but do it with a furiousness that might spin orbits as well.

Naturally, then, our next question might go like this(?): could you/ would you roll up perfectly good cake?

The recipe that I've collected after a corroborative effort involves much epic fails, finally leading to , what I believe is this near zero fail. Sylphlike, with a mere 60 grams of fat, it is the one of soft crumb feature, pliable, holding shape under duress, with not much scratch to be seen. While numerous websites insist on the benefits of a preroll, for which I stand against and may receive serious flak for, I believe my ultimate sketch negates the process of folding before filling. Uncomplicated and perhaps a little relaxing( playing with cake can be a therapeutic stress reliever) the whole process of construction and build may have you deliriously giddy, like a kid again.

For the fillings, since I have slacked so long, I was pressed to provide not one but two easy ideas that are of equal splendid choice. Yes, I can be. Generous like that. Of this duo, the first bears reminiscence similar to one of the best cakes in BFMK archival history( at least according to the stats I read, or misread) and the second resembles the glorious Eton mess.

With enough foresight, you can see this confection draping through successfully onto many seasons of life, with fillings as different as wild vision takes you.

After this, let's say, ambition strikes, in pertinence to weather/season/or just plain hungerpangs, your mind, if it's anything like mine, cannot rest without bringing numerous prospects to insanely good cakeroll fruition. So what's stopping you to... Fall it up with pumpkin spice/ sweet cream cheese, freshen the scene in a mint/ chocolate ganache, or  matcha on with green tea/ cream jelly?  Add to list, bacon/buttercream, yes(!!)I am dying to try, and I think I've directed you into some brilliantly creative thinking.

Once you see how uncomplicated swiss rolls are, you may never be able to imagine life another way. Irrespective of filling and gild, the whole show should impress the socks off anyone you serve it to.  

Which if you read and take notes, might just well be too many to count.

This is how we roll.
To perfection. In all its glory. Do we hear angels sing?
(Cake recipe adapted from KitchenTigress]
  • 150 gm egg whites
  • 60 gm sugar
  • 60 gms egg yolks
  • 40 gms cake flour
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 60 gm corn oil
Strawberry/Apricot filling Filling~
  • 1 ½  cup chopped strawberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 2 tbsp apricot jam
Whipped cream filling~
  • ½ cup whipping cream
  • 4 tbsp sugar
Nutella raspberry filling~
  • 1 cup Nutella
  • 8 oz raspberries
For the cake~
  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Grease with oil or butter a 13X9" swiss roll pan or baking tray of similar dimension. Line with parchment paper.
  • Using a stand mixer, fitted with whisk attachment, beat egg whites and add sugar while beating Beat until stiff peaks form. 
  • Add yolks to whites in 2 batches, Whisk on low until evenly mixed.
  • Sift half the flour into batter. Add salt. Mix on low speed until uniform.
  • Sift remaining cake flour into mixture.
  • Stir in vanilla extract and oil.
  • Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake at 375 for 5 minutes.
  • Bring down oven temp, 350°F and continue baking for an additional 7-8 minutes until cake is golden and springy,yet firm to the touch. Allow to cool on wire rack.
  • Invert cake on fresh parchment.  Peel existing paper from bottom of cake.
  • Roll with prepared fillings.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and chill until ready to serve.
Sugar showers. Always and ever a very good thing

Directions for the strawberry jam filling~
  • In a small saucepan add cut strawberries, sugar and water.
  • Allow to boil, then bring down heat, having mixture simmer, while stirring occasionally for 5-8 minutes.
  • Heat until thick. Turn off heat. Stir in apricot preserves. Take off heat. Cool completely.
For the whipped cream~
  • Using whisk attachment of stand mixer, beat chilled cream on high until soft shiny peaks form
  • Add sugar and continue to beat until stiff, yet shiny. 
  • Spread over strawberry layer.
 Strawberry, cream filling~
  • Spread the strawberry filling evenly over cake, leaving a 1/4 inch border on sides.
  • Spread a layer of whipped cream over mixture.
Nutella, raspberry filling~
  • Spread Nutella over cake, leaving 1/4 inch border on sides.
  • Layer raspberries over Nutella.
  • Gently smash/crush raspberries with a spoon.
  • Spread cooled cake with filling of choice.
  • Roll cake from the short end, keeping filling intact, tightly, rolling from end to end firmly. Cover with plastic wrap to together and further keep shape. Chill in refrigerator.
Sprinkle with powdered sugar, top with fresh fruit, if desired.
Cut into 1/2 inch slices with a serrated knife.

Octobers past~
2012~ Banana jam

 “Watch over your heart with all diligence, For from it flow the springs of life.” Proverbs 4:23 (NASB)

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Chili-lime roast corn

If you go to the hill stations of India, particularly those hotspots in the South, and find yourself coming back with neverrending cravings for blackened corn and whiffs of eucalyptus, realize that it is common phenomenon, you aren't and will never be alone. It stays with you the rest of your life.  

Ramshackle pushcarts edge up midst backsplashes of similar atmospheric quality, across the country-misty mountains, roadside tourist spots, and breezy beachfronts. The vendors that supply from these could teach the world all it needs to know about beautifying bhutta (bhutta transl:corn). Their product: chili crusted, charred corn, wrapped in recycled newspaper that meets higher purposes. Yes, these coaltopped mobile stoves are the benchmark, true exemplar, of how smoking hot flamegrills should be done.

Of course, roasting corn in crisp climates is clearly more comfortable than cooking it, possibly on the pavement, which on most days, if ambition struck, is my reality, because we all know I reside in the Land of Perpetual Climatic Inferno. 

Still, taking the prospect from Indian streetcart to the streets of Southwest US is an insanely delicious undertaking, one that's both delight and privilege for myself to be able to wax poetic of, share knowledge with and hopefully get you on the bandwagon to. Hereafter, maneuvering maize to exotic magnificence must be the diktat that we all strive for.
It's a superb way to do onthecob, incredibly light with a terrific lime/powdered red pepper/salt ratio. The copybook black and white sprinkle, as good as it is, gets an annex of two more components, giving maize mucho gravitas. Wee smears of butter do great here as well, but can be totally optional. The best part: lime wedges become the ultimate utensil serving a threefold duty of juicer, butter baster, and spicerubber. Bright pops of utter taste and zing emerge from the coalesce of spice/smoke/sweet/tang gifting the whole scene with a quaint, albeit grand, flavor finale. 

That August could be the best and possibly the last month ever to carry off this brilliant endeavor where you can buy fresh ears-in-husk for much less than if you drove miles and miles and miles (this may have happened a few times in my life) to the farm and picked them yourself.

So, is there really an excuse for you to wait on this one? Summer's about to disappear( why I'm desperately trying to rush this out the door). I suggest you collect and consume before its all over.
  • 4-6 ears of corn 
  • ½-1 stick butter
  • 2 tbsp cayenne pepper(Indian chilli powder)
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 4 limes halved
  • Shuck, wash and dry each ear of corn.
  • Grill corn over medium-low heat, turning each, until browned/almostcharred and cooked through.
  • Take off heat.
  • Smear some butter onto sides.
  • In a bowl, mix cayenne, salt and pepper.
  • Dip each lime into chili salt mixture. 
  • Rub the seasoned lime wedge over corn, squeezing lime juice over it.
  • Serve warm.
Outdoor grills, gastop flames, indoor cast-iron, your choice. 
Fire breather to the spice wimp; the desire to lungburn or tonguewhisper is totally up to you.

August 2015~ Mango kulfi
August 2012~ Pate A Choux

Missed you guys. Our conversations are becoming few and far between. With school in full swing I believe I should hold attendance regularly. Whatever that means.

"He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.  And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy." Colossians 1:17-18