Tuesday 18 August 2015

Gula Melaka Cotton Cake 椰糖棉花蛋糕

I always like the perfect combination of gula melaka/palm sugar, coconut milk and pandan leaf. Engaging these three great ingredients into my cotton cake yield an aromatic cake that faintly filled the kitchen with its unique soft sweet scent during baking. 

Yield: one 15 cm round cake
Cake mould: 6" round cake mould
Baking temperature & time:
170 degree Celsius for 40 minutes with only upper heating, lower rack.
Reduce to 150 degree Celsius for 20 to 25 minutes, upper & lower heating

All ingredients in room temperature
Using 60g eggs

25g coconut milk 椰奶
30g gula melaka 椰糖 
1 blade pandan leaf 香兰叶

3 egg yolks 蛋黄
30g beaten egg 蛋液

40g unsalted butter 无盐奶油
50g cake flour 低筋面粉
Pinch of salt 盐

3 egg whites 蛋白
40g fine sugar 细砂糖

1. Line a 6" round cake pan with a small piece of parchment paper if you are using a fixed base cake pan. This is to facilitate removal of cake from the pan.
You may omit this step if you are using a 6" removal base cake pan. But need to wrap the base with double layer aluminum foil.

2. Heat coconut milk, chopped gula melaka/palm sugar, and pandan leaf, till the gula melaka melted.
Allow to cool down before use. Set aside.

3.  In a separate bowl, blend 3 egg yolks with 30g beaten egg. 

4. Remove the pandan leaf from gula melaka mixture in (2) and add to the yolk mixture in (3). Cover and set aside.
Check the temperature of the gula melaka mixture before adding to the yolk mixture.

4. Heat butter till you see small bubbles start to form at the bottom of the melted butter.
Do not over heat the butter as we don't want the melted butter to fry the flour.

5. Remove the bowl of warm melted butter from the stove, add in the flour and fold till smooth paste formed.

6. Add (5) to (4) , and mix into a smooth batter.
Ensure the mixture in (5) is not too hot before adding to the egg mixture, to avoid cooking the egg mixture.

7. Add in a pinch of salt. Cover and set aside.

8. Beat egg white till frothy, about 30 seconds. Add in the sugar, in 3 batches.

9. Beat at medium high speed at the start and reduce to low speed towards the end of the process. Beat the meringue till almost reaching the stiff peak stage. The standing meringue has a slight dip at the tip.

10. Scoop about 1/3 of the meringue into the batter at (7). Fold to combine.

11. Pour the batter back to the remaining meringue and fold into a smooth batter.

12. Pour the batter into the 6" round cake mould. Lightly bang the cake mould a few times to remove any trapped air bubbles in the batter.

13. Place the cake pan in a tray of 1cm-deep hot water. 
Steam-bake the batter in a preheated oven set at 170 degree Celsius with only the upper heating coil for 40 minutes at lower rack of the oven. 

After 40 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 150 degree Celsius with both upper and lower heating, for another 20 to 25 minutes*.
If the cake brown too fast, covers it with an aluminum foil.
* When the cake has stopped rising for 5 minutes, the cake is about done.

End of baking.

Or,  if your oven have no option to select upper and lower heat, you can bake at 160 degree Celsius for 30 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 150 degree Celsius and baked for another 30 minutes.
Oven temperature and baking duration may differ based on individual oven.

14. Remove the cake from the oven. 

Immediately drop the cake with the mould from a height of about 7 to 8cm for 3 times. This helps to prevent the cake from over shrinking during cooling.

15. Cool the cake in the mould on a cooling rack for about 20 minutes. 
While the cake is still warm, runs a silicon spatula along the edge of the cake. Remove the cake from the cake mould and cool down on a wire rack. This is to prevent accumulation of moisture at the base of the cake.

16. You may want to dry the sides of the cake by keeping it in the remnant heat of the oven for about 20 minutes. Or, turn on the oven to 90 degree Celsius for 2 minutes, then let the cake stays for 15 minutes.

17. After the cake has completely cooled to room temperature, slice the cake.

18. The cake is best serve after refrigerated for 2 hours :)

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