Setting a pattern for procrastination? (Daring Bakers Jan 2011)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Sigh, if January is anything to go by, my ability to meet deadlines for the rest of the year is looking rather slim. As you all know, the posting/ reveal date for the Daring Bakers challenge is on the 27th of each month.

Guess what I was doing on the 27th? If you’d guessed “just starting my challenge”, then you would be right.

Luckily, this month’s challenge looks tricky but is actually very simple to make as promised by our host. And with that, let’s cue the blog-checking lines.

 The January 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Astheroshe of the blog accro. She chose to challenge everyone to make a Biscuit Joconde Imprime to wrap around an Entremets dessert.

A jo-what? An entre-why?

If, like me, your French is a little rusty, here’s what the challenge means (as explained by our lovely host.  

“A joconde imprime (French Baking term) is a decorative design baked into a light sponge cake providing an elegant finish to desserts/torts/entremets/ formed in ring molds. A joconde batter is used because it bakes into a moist, flexible cake. The cake batter may be tinted or marbleized for a further decorative effect.

Entremets (French baking term)- an ornate dessert with many different layers of cake and pastry creams in a mold, usually served cold.”





Ah, sponge cake I could do. And as mentioned earlier, it takes hardly any time to whip up. This sponge cake has an added decorative "layer" that eventually forms the base for the finished dessert.


 Decor paste : Piped onto baking paper
Slightly wrinkled finished sponge



Check out the recipe either at accro, or at the Daring Kitchen. A few modifications I made to the recipe:

1) I used 3oz of each ingredient/ 3 eggwhites for the decor paste, instead of 7 eggwhites. This still yielded a LOT of decor paste for my purposes.

2)I used baking paper as I don’t own a silpat, and it worked fine but looked a little “wrinkled”. Hardly noticeable in the finished dessert though.

3) The recommended baking time seems very long, especially at that high temperature. I only needed about 8 minutes for my sponge, but I did spread the batter really thinly.

(edit) 4) I made the decor paste first, then made the sponge batter while the decor layer was chilling in the freezer.




The decor paste ready to go.

Once the spongy outside is made, we needed to mould it and fill it. I decided to make 3 mini cakes, and since I was pressed for time, I went with a really simple filling using super-stabilised whipped cream (300 ml thick cream with liquid gelatin added, then whipped), a raspberry puree, mango puree and pistachio nut “paste”. For the fruit purees, I smooshed some fruit through a sieve and cooked over low heat with a bit of sugar until a thick jammy puree happened. (I was cooking on the fly here, so no measurements, sorry).



 As for the pistachios, I was aiming for pistachio butter, but could only find salted pistachios which are quite expensive. So I bought only a small bag, painstakingly peeled each one, then bunged the lot in the food processor, and added a couple of tablespoons of  honey to loosen. There weren’t quite enough nuts to be blended properly, so the resulting nutty paste wasn’t very smooth. But it was very yummy!



In fact, the whole cake was very delish and it’s something I would definitely do again especially if I wanted an impressive make-ahead dessert.



My last minute effort was kind of cute but hardly what I would term elegant. For beautiful versions of the challenge, do check out the other Daring Bakers, who started their challenge at a much more sensible time.

Have a great weekend! I’ll be using the time to procrastinate harder. Or maybe I'll just eat more cake :)

29 comments:

Renata said...

OMG!!! What a beautiful and colorful work of art!

Ruth H. said...

If this is what you do last minute, I am really scared to know what you would have done with more time! I love the colorful designs you made, and the simple whipped cream and fruit/nut toppings sounds delicious. Great work on this challenge!

Jennifurla said...

I think it is very bright and whimsy, great job!

Ellie (Almost Bourdain) said...

Beautiful rainbow creation, Shaz! Very well done.

chef_d said...

Beautiful colors! I love the flavors (pistachio, mango and raspberry) you used.

E.K.R said...

Great job on the challenge! I love the patterns you piped for your joconde and the flavour combination is so creative and sounds so delicious - particularly the pistachio part! :)

Stephanie said...

I absolutely love your rainbow design! Now I want to make another cake with rainbows on it!!

I used parchment paper too, I saw that people were getting wrinkles so I secured the paper to the pan with dabs of the batter under the sheet, just one on each corner.

beautiful cake!

Eat the Love said...

I TOTALLY love the rainbows that you made on the sponge! That's so awesome! It was such a great challenge. Congrats!

astheroshe said...

I love how it is soo colorful! GReat JOB!

grace said...

rainbows, yay! how delicate and delightful--better late than never, i say. :)

Robyn Clarke said...

The rainbows are so cute and fun. Well done!

Todd M said...

Very nice designs - and I like the idea of doing it square as well.

pierre said...

Always surprised by these amazing colourful cakes !!!pierre

Mary at n00bcakes said...

Beautiful joconde imprime design! Mind me asking about how thick your joconde batter ended up being? Mine seemed a bit thin at 1/4-1/2 an inch.

Deeba PAB said...

Just gorgeous Shaz. U a DB? Why didn't I know that? I love the way you did the netremets and the shapes. Excellent ...

Barbara said...

Now that's a happy joconde, Shaz! I love the colors. Some of the work is so fine it looks like needlepoint!
Good work on this challenge!

Laura said...

Wow. I love your colorful joconde and your fillings. The fruity flavors are perfectly complemented by the rainbow sponge.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Lovely patterns, gorgeous flavors and beautiful cakes! Very well done.

Cheers,

Rosa

Beth said...

So beautiful! Procrastinating or not, you did a great job!

Barbara Bakes said...

Such a fun, colorful design. Love the addition of fresh fruit. Great job on this challenge.

Not Quite Nigella said...

Awww Shaz I love your rainbow pattern! If that's what proscrastination gives you then I'd be tempted to procrastinate! :)

Marcellina said...

They are very cute and bright! I love them and the flavour are delicous! I can't believe you whipped them up so quickly! You are amazing!
BTW Thanks for the concern - we have missed the major flooding and the cyclone the other night but now await the biggy! A huge cyclone is headed our way.

Angie Lives to Eat (and Cook)! said...

A very pretty creation =)

babe_kl said...

Gosh you're so patient! Too pretty to eat them leh :p

shaz said...

Thank you for your lovely words eeveryone.

Stephanie - great tip, must remember that next time

Mary (noobcooks) - mine was about 1/2 an inch thick if I had to guess

Deeba - yes dear, been doign this for abotu a year and a half now :)

Marcellina - glad to hear you are ok, and our thoughts are with you.

Lisa said...

OMG...I what a fantastic idea (and what work!0 to make rainbow colors for the joconde. I have loved rainbows since I was a kid, but I never would have had the patience to section off the paste and color each section. You rock, seriously, as do your entremets :)

Aparna said...

Better late than never, so never mind. Love the bright rainbow colours on your entremet.

dessert girl said...

This is sooo cool! I love the little basket one (the first pic). It would be a great idea for kids, too!

Lea said...

Pattern is amazing, very good job!