Monday, 13 November 2017

Sliced Pandan Cake with Gula Melaka Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Nowadays, baking sliced cakes has become a trend. I had not done that before, but I thought it’s a great idea especially if we were serving the cake for a gathering. So I decided to experiment baking pandan sliced cake using the cupcake recipe I shared before.

 

I like the way it turns out... It makes a beautiful presentation. The size of each slice is small and the flavour is undeniably so awesome!





Below is the 10x10-inch cake which I made on Saturday. Each bite-slice is smaller than the one above, which I think is suitable when serving for gatherings.


Pandan Sliced Cake with Gula Melaka Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Cake:
200g cake flour
1/2 tsp baking powder (double acting)
125g unsalted butter, softened
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla paste / essence
160g granulated / castor sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
*75g coconut milk (from a box) + 45g water
*2 tbsps pure pandan juice (Refer here on how to prepare the extract.)
*green colouring
* (combined & mixed)

Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Prepare a 10 x 10-inch swiss roll pan. Line the base and grease it with butter.
  2. Combine flour & baking power. Sift & set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, on medium speed of an electric mixer, combine butter, vanilla & salt. Cream until smooth.
  4. Add sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  5. Add in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  6. Add the dry ingredients in three parts, alternating with the coconut milk. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated, taking care not to over beat.
  7. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
  8. Place pan on the middle rack of the oven & bake for about 15-20 minutes or until the cake is cooked.
  9. Cool cake completely on a wire rack before assembling.
Gula Melaka Syrup (for the buttercream, brushing and drizzling)
100g gula Melaka, crushed
2 pandan leaves, torn lengthwise & tied a knot
1/4 cup water

Combine water, gula Melaka & daun pandan in a heavy-based saucepan over medium low heat. Stir until all the sugar has melted. Then continue heating up the syrup & to thicken it slightly, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat, strain & leave aside to cool completely to room temperature. The caramel will thicken as it cools. 

Gula Melaka Swiss Meringue Buttercream
2 large egg whites
70g granulated sugar
100g unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tsp pure vanilla paste
pinch of salt
2 tbsp gula Melaka syrup

Method:
  1. Combine egg whites, sugar and salt in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Whisk continuously, keeping it over the heat, until the mixture reaches about 70°C and the sugar has dissolved (rub some between your fingers - if it feels grainy, it hasn't dissolved). 
  2. Transfer the bowl from the pan of simmering water to a pan of water at room temperature. Keep stirring the egg white mixture until it cools down. Then transfer the mixture to a mixer with a whisk attached and beat on medium-high for about 5 minutes, until stiff peaks have formed.
  3. Turn down the speed to medium and start adding small chunks of butter, checking that it has incorporated before adding more. Keep beating until the mixture comes together, this will take about 5 minutes. (I removed the whisk and attached the paddle attachment just before adding the butter.)
  4. With the mixer running, add in 2 tbsp gula Melaka syrup, beating until well combined. Once ready, transfer the buttercream in a piping bag and place it in the fridge while preparing the cake for assembling.
Assembling:
  1. Cut the cake into 2, such that we have 2 pieces of 10 x 5-inch cakes.
  2. Place 1 piece of cake (top side down) on a cake board. Brush the cake lightly with some gula Melaka syrup. This step will help make the cake stay moist. (If the syrup is too thick, take some and dilute it with some hot water.)
  3. Using an offset spatula, carefully top with a layer of gula Melaka buttercream. Then place the second cake layer on top. For the crumb coat, spread the entire cake with a thin coat of buttercream using an offset spatula. Chill for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the cake from the chiller and spread the entire cake with more buttercream. The amount of buttercream used depends on your preference. I covered my cake with only a thin layer, looking half-naked! 
  5. Using a long knife, mark and slice the cake into squares. I sliced mine into 18 pieces (6x3).
  6. Pipe buttercream onto each piece and drizzle the remaining gula Melaka syrup.
Notes:
  1. Make sure the butter is softened at room temperature before beating it to produce a fluffy batter. 
  2. Ideally, the cake is left overnight before frosting. This way, the cake will be less crumbly.
  3. The above recipe yields a 10 x 5-inch layered cake. I cut it into 18 pieces. The buttercream recipe is just enough to layer the cakes, cover the entire cake with a thin layer and piping a rosette on each piece.
  4. I also made a 10 x 10-inch layered cake. For this, I used 2 recipes and baked each recipe in a 10 x 10-inch pan. After layering and frosting the cake, I sliced it into 49 pieces (7 x 7 slices).

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