Tuesday 26 January 2016

chiffington, that lamington/chiffon love child

 I've been contemplating iconic Australian desserts, it's not a long list, pavlova and the lamington, even one of those is contentious. It's Australia Day this week, a public holiday, and an excellent excuse for baking. 

Chiffon cake is one of my favourite things, no surprise, and the only cake my family agree on; so in honour of Australia Day, I've created a chiffon cake with lamington flavours. A light chocolatey sponge, filled with fresh raspberries, whipped cream and raspberry jam, coated in creamy raspberry frosting and showered with coconut. An inside out lamington that looks a bit like a giant iced vovo, another Australian classic. 

It's indulgent, but so is a public holiday so close to Christmas and New Year :) If splitting and filling the cake is a step too far, just go with the frosting, or even slices of the naked cake, spread with jam and heaped with cream. Happy Australia Day x

chocolate chiffon cake

225g cake flour

25g cocoa powder
5g baking powder
1/4 tsp bicarb soda
1/2 tsp salt
250g caster sugar
180 ml cooled, weak black coffee
125 ml canola oil
1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped or 1 tsp vanilla paste
6 jumbo eggs, separated (weight in shell approx 65-70g)
1 extra egg white
1/2 tsp cream of tatar (not essential, but will stabilise the egg whites)
50g caster sugar

raspberry jam, recipe below

300ml thickened cream, whipped to medium peaks
2 punnets raspberries
raspberry swiss meringue buttercream, recipe below
100g shredded coconut, sweetened or unsweetened, whatever you prefer
50g flaked coconut

serves 16

 preheat your oven to 170ºC

• combine the cake flour, cocoa, baking powder, bicarb soda and salt, sift into a the bowl of a stand mixer, if you have one, and with the paddle attachment mix through the 250g caster sugar 
• make a well in the centre of your flour mixture, add the cooled coffee, egg yolks, oil and vanilla extract, mix until smooth
• in another, really large bowl whisk the 7 egg whites until foamy, add the cream of tartar then mix until you have soft peaks, gradually add the additional 50g caster sugar, whisking until you have firm peaks and the sugar has dissolved
• fold the egg whites into the batter in three stages
• pour the batter into an ungreased, unlined angel food cake tin and bake for 55-60 minutes; check after 55 minutes, the cake should spring back when gently pressed, if not, put it back in for the extra 5 minutes
• remove the cake from the oven, and immediately invert to cool; if your tin doesn't have "feet" balance the upturned tin over a bottle, guiding the neck of the bottle through the centre tube of your pan
• when completely cool, to release the cake, run a sharp knife around the inside and tube sections of the cake tin, remove the cake leaving it sitting on the centre section of the tin; this next stage is tricky, slide a strong thread, I use dental floss, between the base of the cake and the tin, slide the string all the way around the cake, crossing each end around the tube. Invert the cake onto a chopping board, you should have a super flat, neat finish on the top of your cake 
• using a long serrated knife, slice the cake in half horizontally, carefully lift the top section and place to one side
• tip 1/2 cup of raspberry jam into a small pan, heat gently, push through a fine sieve to remove the seeds, set aside to cool
• once cool, spread a layer of jam on the bottom half of the cake, leaving about 1cm margin on the outside and inside edges
• put around 2/3 cup of raspberry buttercream in a piping bag fitted with a plain 10mm tip; pipe a ring of buttercream on the margins you left on the outside and inside edges of the cake, creating a channel 
• scatter some raspberries in the channel and top with whipped cream, staying within the channel; keep left over raspberries and cream to serve with the cake
• carefully lift the top layer of cake, replacing it on the base layer; if your horizontal cut is a dodgy as mine, line the top layer to match any dips and swails on the base layer :) put the cake in fridge for 10 minutes or so to firm up
• place your chilled cake on a turntable if you have one, step one is the crumb coat, it uses a super thin coating of frosting to glue any loose crumbs to the cake
• starting from the top and working your way down the sides and into the hole through the centre of your cake, use an offset pallet knife to spread a layer of buttercream over your cake;  using the edge of your pallet knife or a cake scraper, gently scrape back as much of the frosting as you can leaving a super thin crumb filled layer behind
• return the cake to the fridge for at least 15 mins to set the crumb coat
• again with the offset pallet knife, cover your cake with a final thicker layer of frosting 

• keeping back around a heaped tablespoon of flaked coconut for a final flourish, combine the rest of the flaked coconut with the shredded coconut
• take small handfuls of coconut mix and gently press against the sides of the cake to coat, sprinkle over the top, adding a final scattering of coconut flakes
• slice giant slabs of cake with a serrated knife, serve with raspberries and cream and enjoy
• the cake will keep covered in the fridge for 3 days, perfect for night time raids, very Nigella ;)

quick raspberry jam

500g raspberries, fresh or frozen
75g caster sugar
zest and juice of 1 small lemon

• tip all ingredients into a small pan, set aside for 15 min, the sugar and juice will begin to soften the berries
• bring to the boil over medium heat, turn the heat to low and leave to gently bubble for 15 minutes, the jam will thicken and the berries will begin to break down
• remove from the heat and pour into a clean jar, put the lid on and store in the fridge until you are ready to use (dishwasher clean will be fine, no need to sterilise as you should use all the jam for this recipe; if you double recipe, make it more than a day in advance or plan to store any left overs, best use a sterilised jar, there are many ways to sterilise jam jars and plenty of guides on the web, click here for an example)

raspberry swiss meringue buttercream

3 large egg whites
180g caster sugar
230g butter, cut into cubes, at room temperature

1/2 cup raspberry jam, warmed and strained to remove seeds
pinch salt
seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean

• combine the egg whites and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer, place over a pan of simmering water, don't let the bowl touch the water; whisk constantly until the temperature reaches 72ºC 

• return the bowl to the stand mixer and whisk on medium high until the mixture cools, has doubled in size and forms stiff peaks
• change to the paddle attachment and add the butter a piece at a time, mix to incorporate each piece before adding the next; the mixture may look alarmingly curdled at times but keep mixing and it will magically come back together
• once all the butter is in, add the salt and vanilla seeds, mixing on slow until combined, finally add the cooled strained jam, again mixing slowly to combine

• the frosting should be firm enough to scoop, if it's too soft, put it in the fridge to firm up, checking in 5 minute intervals until it is ready
• buttercream will keep for a week in an air tight container in the fridge, allow to soften at room temperature before use

1 comment:

heather (delicious not gorgeous) said...

i love how light and airy this looks! from the fluffy cake to the billowy buttercream. and it almost reminds me of a snowball aesthetic-wise, because it's pink and coconutty (: