I’m a huge fan of classic French choux pastry filled with almond praline mousseline cream.
I’ve been quite busy lately and haven’t got the time to blog. There were so many joyous events happened. I attended few weddings, baptism service, bible seminars, my usual volunteer works and many exercise outings with friends on weekends. Just for the 1st half of the year, I had also traveled to Perth and Shanghai. I had an enjoyable trip in Perth and also made a few new friends in Shanghai. But this Paris Brest turned out really good that I told myself I must find time to put it on my blog.
I love the texture of this choux pastry that topped with toasted almond nibs. It’s crispy and filled with delicious Praline Mousseline Cream and toasted hazelnuts. It’s really hard not to fall in love with it.
Look at the list of ingredients! Yes I know… but don’t get intimated by it. Praline paste and pastry cream can be prepared in advance and you can leave the choux pastry and mousseline cream for the next day.
The recipe is adapted from various sources including a class that I attended.
I’m totally satisfied with this bake and it’s truly rewarding.
30g almond (with or without skin)
1)Prepare a small tray and line baking paper on it.
2)Wet a kitchen towel, for putting below the caramel pot. This is to prevent caramel from over cooking.
3)Toast almond at 15°C for 30mins.
4)In a pot, boil Sugar and Water until 117°C or form small bubbles
5)Add in the almond and stir until it’s caramelized.
6)Pour the caramelized almond on the lined tray and let it cooled.
7)When it’s completely cooled, grind in the food processor until it forms a thick paste.
8)Store in the airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use.
300g milk (mixed of half milk; half whipped cream)
60g egg yolk
72g sugar (half onto milk; half onto yolk)
24g cake or plain flour (mixed of half flour; half corn flour)
1)Prepare a small tray and line baking paper on it.
2)In a bowl, whisk yolk, the other half sugar and flour until it’s well combine.
3)Boil milk with half sugar in a saucepan until small bubbles is formed. Add in the yolk mixture. Combine them by whisking in slow fire until the mixture is thickened.
4)Once it’s thickened, pour it onto the lined tray and let it cooled.
5)When it’s cooled, put in the fridge.
Praline Mousseline Cream
300g pastry cream
1)Whisk butter until fluffy and follow by praline.
2)Add pastry cream into it and whisk until it’s well combine.
3)Transfer the mixture to pipping bag.
2g salt (slight heap of 1/4 tsp)
2g sugar (slight heap of 1/4 tsp)
80g plain flour
40g almond nibs (topping)
1 egg wash
24g hazelnut (toast and half it)
1)Boil milk, water, butter, salt and sugar in a saucepan.
2)Remove the pot from the fire. Add flour and mix them well. Then bring the pot back to the fire and cook in slow fire until dry.
3)Transfer the mixture to mixer bowl attached with peddles. Beat in low speed for about 5 minutes. This is to remove water evaporation. Then add egg one at a time and beat until it’s smooth. The batter should not be running. It should firm and still hold it shape.
4)Transfer the mixture into pipping bag and pipe donut shape on the tray that lined with baking paper.
5)Egg wash and top with almond nibs
6)Bake at 160°C for 35-40mins (do not open the oven door). After baking for 30mins, reduce to 150°C.
7)To assemble, use serrated knife to cut the rings of pastry in half. Pipe praline mousseline cream into the base of each choux pastry and topped with toasted hazelnuts. Sprinkle with décor icing sugar and serve.
I have made a few Tiramisu over the years. Each time I made, I would tweak the recipe. This round I used Kahlua instead of Dry Marsala dry wine to elevate the coffee aromas.
Wow! It’s full of rich flavor and I fell in love with it.
Made this for a potluck gathering as requested by 2 beautiful birthday girls. I enjoyed the process of making Tiramisu. You will be surprised at how easy this cake can be accomplished. That’s why I don’t mind to make it again and again.
It’s a fabulous cake. It certainly “pick-me-up” especially on days when I have to unwillingly accepted matters which I felt absolutely lousy.
120ml Nestle Gold Blend
4 tbsp (total) Kahlua liqueur
2 tsp Vanilla extract
3 Large egg yolks
50g (total) Granulated sugar
250g Mascarpone cheese
175ml Heavy cream
18-20 pcs Savolardi Italian ladyfingers
30g or more Cocoa powder for dusting
20 pcs Oreo cookies [remove the fillings sandwiched
in between the cookies]
Combine expresso (or coffee), 2 tbsp brandy, vanilla extract and a tbsp of sugar in a wide, small bowl.
Place the Oreo in a resealable plastic bag. Flatten bag to remove excess air, then seal bag. Finely crush cookies by rolling a rolling pin across the bag. Place the crushed cookies in a springfoam. Add butter, mix well. Then press it firmly onto bottom of the springfoam pan. Refrigerate it.
(1)Beat egg yolk, 2 tbsp of Kahlua liqueur in a heatproof bowl and set over a bain marie.
(2)Reduce heat to low. Whisk constantly using a handheld electric mixer, beat until the mixture is doubled in volume, hot to the touch, and texture is thick and foamy for about 5-10 mins.
(3)Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly, about 15 minutes.
(4)Pour in the mascarpone cheese into the egg mixture and mix well.
(5)Whip cream in a bowl until stiff peaks. Once the yolk-mascarpone mixture has cooled a little, gently fold in half of the whipped cream and then follow by the remaining half. Fold until the mixture is fully incorporated (the whipped cream will deflate a little).
(1)Remove the Oreo cake base from the refrigerator.
(2)Spoon 1/3 of the mascarpone filling over the Oreo cake base and spread into an even layer.
(3)Dip half of the ladyfingers very quickly into the coffee, and arrange in over the filling.
(4)Spoon another 1/3 of the mascarpone filling over the ladyfingers and spread it evenly.
(5)Then dip the remaining ladyfingers very quickly into the coffee and arrange a second layer over the filling.
(6)Spoon the remaining mascarpone filling over the ladyfingers and spread the filling evenly.
(7)In the Springfoam, it should have 1 layer of oreo cake base on the bottom of the Springfoam, 3 layers of mascarpone filling and 2 layers of coffee dipped ladyfingers.
(8)Dust with cocoa powder. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours in order to let the filling set properly. This will also give the ladyfingers enough time to absorb the liquids and soften to just the right texture.
(9)Remove the Springfoam ring when it is chilled. Dust it with extra cocoa powder before serve. Tiramisu can be chilled up to 2 days, but no longer or else the ladyfingers will breakdown too much.
If you like Chinese dessert, you should give this a try! I love making this dessert to host my ethnic group of friends as I personally feel that Chinese dessert is a wonder. It’s well known for giving lustre and glow in skin.
This is one of my favourite Chinese desserts of all time.
5 tbsp Sugars
2 ½ tbsp Cornflour
1 cup Milk
1 cup Water
1 tsp Gelatine
(1)Soak walnuts in boiling water for about 10-15 minutes.
(2)Remove the husk of the walnuts and bake in oven at 180 Deg C for about 20 minutes until golden.
(3)Blend the toasted walnuts together in a blender to make walnuts milkshake.
(4)In a pot, put in the sugar, water, walnut milkshake, cornflour and gelatin. Boil and continuously stirring it until it is thickened.
(5)Sieve the mixture to remove lump and to achieve a smooth mixture.
(6)Pour the mixture into small cups. Set aside to cool before putting them into the refrigerator to set.
The frosting of this cake is a little different from the typical whipping cream with fruits topping which I used to do. It’s supposed to create water colour effect on the cake but some how it turned out to be a disaster. Anyway, after few attempts and I'm so thankful that it was eventually made it to the ‘finale’.
Pistachio cake layers with buttercream and fresh raspberries… they work wonderfully together. The tangy taste of the raspberries with the fluffy and moist pistachio cake is what I like most about this cake.
This cake is specially baked for a lovely friend’s 50th birthday. May she always stay stunning and amazing!
For the cake
60g Pistachio nuts
180g All-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp Baking powder
½ tsp Baking soda
¼ tsp Salt
113g Unsalted butter
120g Castor sugar
½ Whole egg
1.5 tsp Vanilla extract
125g Fresh milk
1 ½ Egg whites
¼ Cream of tartar
For the Frosting:
350g Unsalted butter
250g Powdered sugar, sifted
¼ tsp Salt
1 ½ tsp Vanilla extract
4 tbsp Whipping cream (see note)
For the filling
Raspberries (cut into half)
For the cake
(1)Preheat oven to 170 Deg C. Grease the bottom and sides of 8” cake pans with butter. This only makes 2 layers of cakes.
(2)In a mixing bowl, mix together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
(3)Ground pistachio nuts in a food processor until coarsely chopped and then take 2 tablespoons and add it into the dry ingredients. Continue to ground the rest of the nuts until it comes powder. Mix into the dry ingredients.
(4)In the bowl of an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, whip the butter for 2 minutes. Add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Mix in the whole egg and the vanilla until just combined.
(5)In 3 batches, alternate mixing the dry ingredients and milk into the butter. Mix completely before adding each additional batch. Scrape down the sides as needed.
(6)In a separate mixing bowl, whip egg whites and cream of tartar until it reaches soft peaks. Fold the whipped egg whites into the batter until combined.
(7)Pour batter into pans and smooth the tops. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool the pan for 10 minutes before removing and cooling completely on a wire rack before slice them into half.
For the frosting
(1)Beat the softened butter for a minutes with a mixer using the paddle attachment on medium speed.
(2)Turn off the mixer and add the sifted powdered sugar and turn your mixer on the lowest speed (so the sugar doesn’t blow everywhere) until the sugar has been incorporated with the butter.
(3)Increase mixer speed to medium and add the vanilla extract, salt. Add 2 tablespoons of cream (if you have) and beat for 2-3 minutes until it is whipped, fluffy, and creamy in appearance.
Note: If your frosting needs a more stiff consistency, add remaining sugar. If your frosting needs to be thinned out, add remaining cream 1 tablespoons at a time.
For assembly of cake
(1)Place one cake layer (bottom-side up) on a serving stand. Spread buttercream on it and top with raspberries.
(2)Place the second cake layer on top and repeat process.
(3)Finally, top with last cake layer. Coat a thin layer of buttercream on the cake and put it in the refrigerator to chill for about 15-20 minutes.
(4)Remove the coated cake from the refrigerator and start to apply the balance buttercream all over the cake and follow by decorating the cake.
This is a rich cake that filled with lots of chocolate chips and crushed digestive biscuits. It is topped with layer of gooey marshmallow, which was browned until melted and toasted.
I chanced upon this cake when I was looking for some interesting cake to bake for SHINE Ministry. It is a ministry in my church for adults with special needs (developmental disabilities). I’m happy that this cake was well received.
I know the process of making this cake looked daunting but it’s totally doable and not difficult at all. This cake is so pretty that I’m so proud of the outcome of this cake.
[Adapted by Diana Gale]
56g Butter, room temperature
10ml Bran oil
210g Plain flour
1 ½ tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp Baking soda
1/2 tsp Salt
65g Digestive biscuits
240ml Greek yogurt
152g Chocolate chips
12-14 pcs Big marshmallows, slice in half
(1)Start by creaming together butter, oil and sugar in a mixing bowl until the mixture turns pale and fluffy.
(2)Give the bowl a scrape, add the egg and continue mixing.
(3)Crush the digestive biscuits by using either a food processor or placing them in a ziplock bag, pushing out most of the air, sealing the bag and bashing the biscuits with a rolling pin.
(4)Add the crushed digestive biscuits to the rest of the dry ingredients
(5)Add the dry ingredients and the Greek yogurt in the sequence flour-yogurt-flour-yogurt-flour, mixing until the flour is just incorporated.
(6)Fold in the chocolate chips with a spatula.
(7)Transfer the batter into a lined and lightly greased 8×8-inch baking pan. Smooth the top with spatula.
(8)Bake at 180°C for 25-30 minutes or until an inserted skewer emerges cleanly. Cut each marshmallow into 2 and arrange the marshmallow on the cake.
(9)Brown the marshmallow (this takes less than 1 minute, so do not walk away!) or increase your oven temperature to 220°C, return the cake to the oven and bake another 5 minutes, or until the marshmallows are melted and browned.
(10)Allow the cake to cool slightly in the tray before transferring onto a wire rack to cool a little more before cutting it into pieces. It helps cutting easier if you oil your knife first.
I love this softness of this bread. I’m using the same recipe which I made the last time. Instead of dividing the dough into 60g, I divide them into 30g each for cocktail sausages. So ended up I have about 24 mini sausage buns.
Look! How cute they are?
Anyway, this recipe is totally amazing. The texture of the bread is just so soft. In any case, these mini sausage rolls is quite a treat and it didn’t last for a day.
Pulut Hitam is a well-known dessert. The fragrance from the coconut milk blended so well with the black glutinous rice that it brings out a very special taste. This is what it makes this dessert so unique and popular.
My baking buddy, Brenda has turned this unique taste into a cake, which it would never come across my mind but she did it. For the 1st time I tasted this cake, it was so good that I couldn’t get the taste out of my mind.
This is the cake that I frequently baked for family and friends. By topping the cake with some fresh coconut flakes, it gives you another difference texture and feel of the cake.
[Recipe by Brenda Khaw]
227g Unsalted butter
180g Castor sugar
180g Concentrated coconut milk
160g Black glutinous rice flour
100g Cake flour
1 tsp Baking powder
Some fresh coconut flakes sprinkle on top of the cake when serve [optional]
Preheat oven, line parchment paper on 8” square or round cake tin.
Sieve ingredients in (B) together.
Beat butter n sugar with an electric mixer until it is fluffy and turn pale yellow.
Add in eggs, one at a time and mix it well.
Fold in the sifted ingredient. Separate into 2 batches, alternating flour first then coconut milk. Mix them well but do not over mix.
Pour batter into cake tin and bake at 150 Deg C for about 50-60 minutes. Insert a skewer into the center of the cake, it should come out clean, if not continue to bake for another 10 mins or till cooked.
Let is cool for in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Sprinkle some fresh coconut flakes on the cake before serve.
Infusing butter with zest of lemon, this is such a perfect blend. The cake turned out tangy, buttery and bright, perfectly balanced. I really love this cake. If you are lemon lover, I’m definitely one of them, you absolutely need to make this and it’ll be your new favourite.
I like cast iron bundt pan as it comes with many pretty design. But they are too heavy and required care. Silicone mould will be a better choice for me as it can be rolled and folded easier which make storage effortless. After doing some research, for food safety purpose, I decided to go for a reliable brand and have chosen Martellato silicone mold which is made in Italy.
I love baking this cake for friends and church and have baked many of them. Simply love it as it gift beautifully when taking it to a friend or gathering.
[Recipe adapted by Chef Choon, a Personal Patissier]
40g Egg yolk (or 2 egg yolks)
100g Butter, melted
2-3 Lemon zest
2 Egg white
130g Plain flour
2 tsp Baking powder
1 tbsp Poppy seeds (optional)
(1)Butter the mold with butter to make sure it’s well buttered.
(2)Preheat oven at 170 Deg C.
(3)Make butter mixture. Melt butter over low fire and add zest to infuse. Set aside.
(4)Make egg mixture. Whisk sugar, cream and yolk.
(5)Make batter. Stir in 2-3 tbsp of butter mixture into the yolk mixture. When it’s fully combine, add the rest of butter mixture to the yolk mixture and mix well. Set aside.
(6)Make meringue. Beat the egg white with sugar until soft peak.
(7)Add the meringue to the yolk batter then gently fold in the sieved flour and lightly stir in the poppy seed if you wish. Flour should be sieved together with baking power.
(8)Pour the batter into the butter greased mold and bake for 40-45 mins.
(9)Cool the cake before removing it from the mold.