Tag Archives: chiffon cake

Improv: The Tasty Kind

8 Jun

Strawberry Blueberry Easy Peasy Trifle

After my birthday dinner on Saturday with family, I went bar hopping with friends and let’s just say that I vow never to drink that much ever again!  I was down for the count until the afternoon, something that I have experienced before.

Sunday, I knew I had to suck it up and get moving because the boyfriend and I committed to going to another friend’s birthday celebration.  So, this is pretty much how my Sunday went…

Woke up at 9:00am.  Hungover and groggy.  With my makeup still on….Went back to sleep.

Work up at noon.  Hungover and groggy.  Hungry.  Made breakfast for the boyfriend and my brother.  Then, proceeded to get really hyper because I thought I felt better, but I was probably just still drunk.

2:00pm, complained about how crappy I was feeling but trying to get better so we can go to the party.  It was a potluck so the boyfriend said we should just bring a bag of chips, and I thought, hrmm…well, we still had one 9 inch chiffon, and one 8 inch lemon cake stored in the freezer from the birthday layer cake we made the day before….if we just improvise and use the extra cakes we could bring a trifle!

The boyfriend still wanted to bring a bag of chips because it’s easier and he scoffed at me saying that I was in no shape to cook (which was true).  I tried to explain how easy it is to make a trifle (which required no cooking, since we already had cakes baked and whip cream whipped) but he didn’t get it.  For some reason, he then, insisted we use the extra cakes to make another layer cake (umm, wouldn’t that be more work leveling, constructing, making more frosting, etc.)

Let me remind you, I was feeling like crap, trying to make this thing easy so stomped  into the kitchen hollering that I’ll make the trifle even though I’m hungover and he doesn’t have to worry about diddly squat!

….And what did I do while I looked down at the cakes on the countertop stomping into the kitchen?  I hit my head on the cupboard door he left open…. (T0T)

I fell backwards and crouched down, wincing in pain and holding my head in my hands.  Now, this is the weird part… I start to cry and laugh at the same time.  I was crying because it hurt like a b, and laughing because, well let’s face it, this stuff usually only happens in movies, plus, I knew I had to lighten up my attitude and stop being a cranky pants.

Lessons learned: (1) it’s your birthday, you have a right to say “no more booze,” (2) being hungover is not an excuse to be a beezy, (3) when I say somethings easy to make, it really is easy to make.

In the end, the trifle was whipped up in a flash, (albeit, the bowl we used wasn’t very deep, so I only managed to make it a one layered trifle) but everyone at it all up and I got many compliments on it.  : P

Easy Trifle

layer a deep bowl with cake (you can use sponge cake, pound cake, I used leftover chiffon cake), pudding (any flavor you want), whipped cream, and berries/fruit.   Voila!


Birthday Cake – Part Deux: Constructing the Behemoth

5 Jun

This past Saturday was the weekend after my birthday and I had a family dinner and a birthday party with friends to go to. The first thing the boyfriend and I did when we woke up was head to the kitchen to start putting my birthday cake together. Here’s how it went down….

Cake Assembly

1.The first thing you should really do is leveling. This wasn’t the first thing I did, but I should have. I used the same size cake pan for all 3 cakes and thought they would all be uniformed, but as we were constructing the cake, I noticed that my lemon cake was fairly rounded on top so I leveled it off and trimmed it flat.  Make sure your cakes all line up around the edges when their stacked and the tops are flat and leveled.

2. Place strips of wax paper/parchment paper under the edges of your plating area to keep the plate clean and pretty as you assemble and frost the cake.

3. Place one chiffon cake onto the wax paper. Place some lemon custard on top, spreading it out until it’s about an inch from the edges. Make sure the custard doesn’t go over the sides.

4. Place some strawberries onto the custard and an additional but thin layer of custard on top of the strawberries so the next layer of cake has something to stick to.

5. Then place the lemon cake on top. Add custard again to the top of the lemon cake, making sure to keep the custard 1 inch from the edges. Add more strawberries. Then add a thin layer of custard again.

6. Place the last layer of chiffon cake on top and there you have it.  A 3 layer cake!

Now that your cake is all put together, lets continue with frosting and decorating the cake.

Frosting the Cake

1. With this last layer of cake on, apply a thin layer of frosting to the sides and top of the cake. This is called crumb coating. This helps keep all of your crumbs in check and keeps further crumbs from loosening so the thicker, outer frosting layer is flawless/crumbless.

2. Go around the sides again and, this time, add frosting generously. Add as much as you want. Do the same to the top, but try to coat the cake evenly and cover any spots where there may be cake peeking through. If you like, you can leave some frosting left over to decorate the cake with, which is what I did.

3. I bought my first frosting tip ever and used it for this cake.  I used the M1 frosting tip and went around the perimeter on the top of the cake making a shell pattern. To do the shell pattern, you squeeze out a good amount of frosting first and pull the bag away as you squeeze out less frosting. Does that make sense? Practice a few times before you try it out so you don’t have to refrost the cake. Here’s a video with a better explanation.  I did the same to the bottom of the cake but made the shells a little longer.  They look more like pinned ribbon. I then topped it off with some strawberries and a giant star/flower looking thing on the top of the cake.

I refrigerated the cake for about 3 hours, and then added some lemon zest. Unfortunately, the strawberries ran a little bit on the top of the cake.

Here’s the final product. The cake looks better in low light. But I’m really happy at how it turned out, this being my first layer cake and all. I definitely need to work on my decorating skills, though, or lack there of.   And… this is what the inside looks like….

nom nom noms….

happy eatings. ❤

Birthday Cake – Part Uno: Baking & Storing

4 Jun

I didn’t realize that making a layer cake is pretty stressful. I’ve never made one before so I didn’t realize that there are a lot of details that going into making a layer cake.  I feel like all everything had to be thought out in advance, like remembering to level the cakes and layering them when they’re cold, and cooling/storing them without losing moisture. I used the left over batter from yesterdays test-run since I only made a few cupcake with it. The recipes I used are below:

Chiffon Cake

This recipe made enough to fill two 8 inch pans, one 9 inch pan, and a few cupcakes.
2 1/4 cups flour

1 1/4 cups sugar for dry mix +1/4 cups for meringue

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup cold water

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

5 large egg yolks at room temperature

8 large egg whites at room temperature

1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar

1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line two 9-inch round cake pans with parchment paper. Spray with cooking spray.

2. Sift/mix the flour, 1 1/4 cups sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.

3. In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks, water, oil, zest and vanilla on high-speed until smooth (it’ll be a little bubbly).  Stir in the flour mixture until smooth.

4. In another large bowl, beat egg whites with the cream of tartar until soft peaks are formed. Add 1/4 cup sugar, and beat on high until the stiff peaks.  Don’t beat them until they’re dry, just stiff.

5. Use a rubber spatula and fold a quarter of the egg whites into the dough.  Fold in the remaining egg whites gently until they are nicely blended together. Don’t overmix though, and be sure you’re folding or else the egg whites will deflate and your cake won’t be spongy.

6. Divide the batter into the two cake pans and spread evenly. Bake them until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. With my oven, it took 20 minutes.

6. Let cakes cool for at least an hour When completely cool, loosen the edges and flip the cake out on a plate, then onto another plate so the top of the cake is up.

Lemon Cake

Follow the directions on a Duncan Hines lemon cake mix. : P

I didn’t make the lemon cake from scratch.  I couldn’t find a good recipe I really liked for the lemon cake.  This worked out because cake mix tends to be a bit on the too-sweet side and the chiffon cake is light and airy and not very sweet at all.  They balanced each other out well.

Lemon Custard

Follow the directions on a Jello Lemon pudding mix. : P

Again, I didn’t make it from scratch, although if I do ever make this layer cake combo again, I’ll probably attempt to make a lemon custard from scratch next time.

Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz Cream cheese

powdered sugar

1 stick of butter

2 tbs milk

I didn’t measure out the powdered sugar.  I think it’s best if people gauge how sweet they would like their frosting to be.  Generally, I don’t like to add too much sugar but I feel like I may have put in at least a cups worth because the sweetness didn’t come through initially with the cream cheese being a dominant flavor.  I also added some whole milk because the frosting was too thick and I needed to be able to spread it onto the cake.

We ended up baking the cakes Friday night and decided to construct the cake Saturday morning before my family dinner.  To store the cakes without losing moisture, we wrapped each cake with wax paper, then wrapped it in plastic wrap.  We were contemplating freezing it, but I thought since we were going to be working within 12 hours, maybe freezing wouldn’t be necessary.

What do you think?  IS freezing, in fact, the best way to store cakes?

wrapped chiffon cakes

Stay tuned for pictures of the finished product plus an explanation of the whole construction project.

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