Strawberry Shortcake : What can go wrong?

Freshly and Loving Baked on : 11th Jan 2013

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To be honest, it has been a really stressful week for me. My life reset every start of the year. This new year is a tad different for me given that I have started with a new bank and I have the need to perform. So, as always, I piled up tonnes of trading positions personally and a little at work and I am seriously stressed out. That will mean, the need to bake increases in exponential value as I seek to rebalance the sanity.

Strawberry shortcake is in my “to-Bake” list for the longest time ever. But whenever I wanted to get onto it, there will be something that took my breathe away and I have to bake that. I go by what I feel like baking rather that what should be bake. So, after 1 yr of deferment, the pending desire to bake Strawberry shortcake finally exploded.

Strawberry Shortcake

2 parts:
1) Genoise
2) Whipped Cream

Genoise (Sherry Yard’s The secrets of Baking)
Ingredients:
6 Large Eggs
1 cup Sugar
2 ounces of unsalted butter
1 cup Cake Flour

Directions:

We begin off by sifting the cake flour. Sherry recommended sifting it 3 times. I only did it twice and set aside.

Next, create a double boiler. I simply use a small pot with a little water and bring it to bowl. I broke the room temperature eggs into the mixing bowl of my stand up mixer and whisk in the sugar. Then I placed the mixing bowl onto the pot with the simmering water and whisk the mixture till the temperature reached about 65 degree. This will probably take 3 to 4 minutes.

Then I will use the mixer to whisk this heated egg/sugar mixture up at high speed. While the mixer is doing so, I melt the butter and lift it off the heat to cool slightly. Once this egg/sugar mixture thickened and tripled in size. You can test to see if this batter is ready by using a spatula to see if you can draw the number 8. If you can then its time to reduce speed. Lower the speed to medium and whip it for another 2 minutes. Apparently, this stabilized the foam. Once that is done, lower the speed further. At this point, you can start adding your melted butter in slow steady stream. Mix for a while until incorporated.

Lift the mixing bowl away from the mixer and detached the balloon whisk. Add in the sifted flour all at once and use the balloon whisk to fold in the flour. Try to incorporate the flour using minimal number of folds.

Pour the batter into a pan where the bottom are lightly greased and lined with parchment papers while the sides are left clean. Fill the pan up to 2/3 full and tap it lightly to eliminate air bubbles. Spin the pan to push the batter up the sides or simply use a spatula. This is to prevent doming of the cakes. You can see from the picture below that it really does not form a dome. Interesting! I learn something new today.

Then bake in a preheated oven of 176 degree for 25 minutes or until the sides pull away from the pan. Otherwise, you can test it by pressing the middle of the cake with your finger and see if it springs back. If it does, the cake is done.

Let the cake cooled in the pan for 15 minutes before inverting it to take the cake out. Run a knife around the edge to release it. Cool the cake completely before using.

Cake baking in the oven. The smell is ahhhhhh….

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Stablized Whipped Cream Frosting (www.lafujimama.com)

Ingredients:
1 Tsp Powdered Gelatin
4 Tsp Cold Water
1 Cup Whipping Cream
1/4 Cup Powdered Sugar
1/2 Tsp Pure Vanilla Extract

Directions:

Pour the cold water and sprinkled the gelatin onto it in a small saucepan. Let it sit for a while before dissolving the gelatin in low heat and stirring continously. Remove from the heat and let it cool.

Whipped the cold cream with the sugar and vanilla extract until slightly thickened. Then slowly add in the gelatin in a steady stream before whipping up at high speed till stiff peak.

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