Sunday, July 31, 2011

Pandan Chiffon Cake

I decided to bake a pandan chiffon to share with my classmates at-Sunrice tomorrow. Makes sense to share food and recipes in a class of extra virgin chefs. It's also a good chance to update my previous post on this cake with my newfound foodography skills. The motivation for wanting to learn to bake the chiffon for me started because, one, I was curious about how it was made and two, I wanted to know what I was eating. Hope you enjoy this step-by-step sharing. The recipe is here.

Do you know there are 9 parts to an egg? Here, I separate the yolks. I love the natural golden orange colour of an egg yolk. I stare at it rudely, and for as long as I like - it's mesmerizing! I have not learned to separate them without breaking at least one, as you can see here. 
Mix 8 yolks with 2 oz castor sugar, 5 oz self raising flour, 3 fl oz olive oil, and 2 fl oz pandan juice, then set aside.  Thadd takes a short break from study time to help me whisk them together.
I extract fresh pandan juice from its leaves (will have to take pictures of this to show in future). I am a strict, no-artifical-colouring person and dislike the fake green you get from the stores.
A store-bought piece, the green thingy
Next, beat the egg whites till frothy. If you use your hand instead of an
electric mixer, it takes longer but you get a good workout on your arm.
Once you get it to this frothy stage, just a couple of minutes on the mixer, increase speed while slowly adding 3 oz of castor sugar (original recipe is 5 oz but I think that's too much and will start to taste like those from the stores) and a pinch of salt. Thadd says, I want to pinch it!
Beat at high speed for about 3-4 minutes to get this white meringue.
Some recipes call this "soft peak". It shows a peak when you turn the beater upside down. If it drips, it's not ready. Don't stare at this pix for too long or it will start to look like The Phantom of the Opera.
Add your pandan mixture to the meringue and gently fold it in. Don't lose air that has already been whipped in the meringue. The folding technique affects how light and fluffy your cake will turn out later. For the same reason, it's ok for the pandan mixture to be lumpy to prevent over mixing and losing air.
I pour the mixture into a tube pan inherited from my sister. She was crazy about baking at one stage in her life and never in her wildest imagination would think that I would ever be interested to step into the kitchen.

Oven preheated to 175C, I pop this in for 40-45 minutes.
I know my Brandt oven enough now to know it's perfect at 44 minutes.
After 25 minutes, the batter rises so high it covers the tube.  
40 minutes later, it sinks back again which is expected.
It's done when the stick comes out clean with no trace of batter.
Remove from oven immediately and turn it upside down to cool for an hour.
For those with no tube pan, just place it upside down between 2 glasses.

All set for tomorrow.
Maybe some day, I'll have an-EVC embossed cake box?


  1. Hi Luan,

    How do you extract your pandan juice?
    Some people use a white clothes to sieve it but i just let the juice sits for a while once i blended it.
    You can check how I did it out at my blog.

  2. Hi Joshi, I blend the pandan leaves to extract the juice. I just saw your blog, it's great. And you made me realise I should use only the sediments, not everything that's extracted. Good reminder!

  3. Hi, I'm also using a Brandt oven but my chiffon will rise and then deflate when it's still in the oven. May I know which option do you use to bake your beautiful chiffon? I was using only the lower heating element with fan option (can't turn fan off) for my model. Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi, I have tried 2 different options, one with the lower heating element with fan, and one with top and bottom heating element. Both seem ok. For cakes that deflate in the oven, I read that one possibility is the oven temp may be too high. Another is egg white not beaten to stiff peak. You will have to try a few more to troubleshoot where the problem area is. I have attempted chiffon about 15 times now and I am still looking for my perfect one! Stay patient, and happy cooking!


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