Monday 28 November 2011

Well done & Happy birthday!

           How time flies. It's already the second week of the school holidays. Have I done what I've planned to do? A bit, but I can do better! Last week was an eventful week, though. The Primary School Leaving Examinations (PSLE) results were released! All my pupils cleared their papers...phew! My son, Amir, did well too!
        It's been a few years since I witnessed the release of the PSLE results. That afternoon, my son's principal started out by  addressing the sea of anxious parents, tense children & stony-faced teachers in the school hall. He started out with reporting the performance of the school. Not bad at all......everything is above the national level! Then the announcement of the highest score for the school, which was flashed on the screen. Waah........And then, when the name of the holder of that most-envied number was flashed up, she jumped & jumped & jumped for joy! I'm referring to the girl's mother. She ran to her daughter & hugged the cool-looking but clearly elated girl. And then the eyes turned teary. Those were mine. Haay.........when will I stop being so emotional....? It's not even my child! I guess I'm just so happy for the girl & her mother even if she's not mine. It's all right...I still have one more chance. Perhaps in three years time, I'll be able to shed my tears of joy because my son is the top student in the school. Insyaallah....
           Then the principal started reading out from the screen the names of other high scorers. Amir's not one of them. Hmm..... By then, there was some excitement as the standing parents tiptoed while those sitting down, parents & pupils, raised their heads to check the names on the list. At that point, I wished the boss could just wrap up quickly as I was becoming more anxious. I was sure the rest of us was too...
         When Amir received his result slip from his teacher & took a peek at it,  I could see a wide-eyed excitement on his face. And finally, it was my turn to take a look. Phew..... quite a decent number... What a relief! And that's the end of the first chapter. The next chapter will be the secondary school posting results. That will be in 3 week's time....Hopefully, Amir will get his first choice. Otherwise, the second choice is a pretty decent school too.
          On a lighter note, I baked the Japanese Strawberry Shortcake on Saturday as it was Amirah's 20th birthday. Happy birthday Mira!   

           Recently, I saw this cake on Rima's blog. It looked so delicious that I just have to try it. What better time to bake this..... It's very delicious! The sponge cake is moist & soft & the frosting tastes like vanilla ice-cream. Yummy......

Japanese Strawberry Shortcake 
Inspired by Rima.
Cotton cake recipe by Ricke Indriani.
Stabilised whipping cream recipe by Fujimama.

Cotton Cake
145g low protein flour (cake flour)
15g corn flour
1 egg
5 egg yolks - whisk lightly with folk
150g unsalted butter
65g fresh milk
1/2 tsp vanilla paste (I added.)

5 egg white
100g castor sugar
1/4 tsp salt (I used 1/2 tsp.)

  1. Preheat oven 160 deg C. Grease & line a 7 or 8 " baking pan. Wrap bottom of baking pan with aluminium.
  2. Heat butter & milk till warm. Do not let it boil. Switch off heat & add in sifted flour & cornflour, mix using wooden spatula.
  3. Transfer to a bigger bowl & add in eggs. Continue to mix till smooth.
  4. In another bowl, whisk egg white till frothy. Add in salt & sugar in 3 additions. Whisk till soft peak.
  5. Pour 1/3 egg white mixture into egg/buttter mixture. Fold in gently. Pour in the rest & continue to mix gently ( Same manner as when baking chiffon cake.).
  6. Pour batter into baking pan & bake it using au bain marie method for about 45 minutes.
Stabilised whipped cream
2 tsp gelatin powder
8 tsp cold water
2 cup whipping cream, cold
1/2 cup icing sugar
1tsp vanilla

  1. Chill mixing bowl & beaters in the freezer for 10 minutes.
  2. Put cold water in a small saucepan. Sprinkle gelatin over surface of water & let stand for 5 minutes. 
  3. Place saucepan over low heat & stir constantly with a wooden spoon just until gelatin dissolves. Remove saucepan from heat & cool to room temperature.
  4. Remove mixing bowl & beaters from freezer.  Combine whipping cream, sugar & vanilla in  the cold mixing bowl & whip until slightly thickened. Gradually pour gelatin into whipped cream mixture, beating slowly. Then whip mixture at high speed untill slightly stiff.
Simple sugar syrup
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup water

  1. In a medium saucepan combine sugar & water. Bring water to a boil, stirring until sugar has dissolved.
  2. Remove from heat & allow to cool.
250g punnet strawberries

  1. Reserve a handful of strawberries (the prettiest ones!) for decorating top of cake. Dice remaining strawberries into small cubes. Macerate them in a little sugar & set aside.
  2. Slice sponge cake horizontally into three layers.
  3. Place one sponge layer cut-side up on a cakeboard & slightly brush cake surface with sugar syrup.
  4. Spread a thin layer of whipped cream over cake layer & arrange strawberry cubes over the surface. 
  5. Spread a thin layer of whipped cream over the strawberries. Brush cut-side of second layer with the simple syrup & place it over first layer. Frost sides & top with remaining whipped cream. 
  6. Repeat with third layer of cake. Spread a thin layer of cream overtop of cake & return to fridge to chill for thirty minutes.
  7. Using leftover cream, pipe cream as decoration. Chill in fridge for cream to set for an hour or so. Garnish with reserved strawberries (sliced in halves.).


Ayu said...

Congrats to Amir for making it thru with good results!!...Hope you will get the school of your choice ya..

Samalah macm kita, tak boleh tengok this kind of moments..especially kejayaan anak2 yang telah berjaya dalam mata pelajaran masing2..just would happen to our kids too, berjaya dalam pelajaran mereka kan..Nampak soft, moist & sedap strawberry shortcake ni faeez..kalau i nak buat tak boleh for my kids sebab dia orang kalau tak coklat tak makan..hehe..maybe a birthday cake for somebody boleh lah..

Faeez said...

Thks Ayu. Betul kata u tu. Kita tumpang gembira..... Apatah lagi dan yang lebih membanggakan, budak tu bangsa kita. :):)

Anonymous said...

Hi Faeez,

Would like to try this recipe. Do you think this sponge cake will be dry if I make one day in advance? And of course I will also do the creaming 1 day advance. Will the cream still taste good and retain it shape?I am thinking to do for my son birthday party.

Thank you.

Faeez said...

Hi there, yes you can make the sponge in advance. In fact, you can bake it a few days in advance. Just make sure you wrap it with cling wrap & leave it in the fridge. As for the cream, you need to make it just before frosting it to the cake because of the use of gelatine. Hope this clarifies.

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