Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Orange Cream Crepe Gateau

The main component of this dessert needs no further introduction. I'm talking about crepes; I have never met anyone who doesn't like crepes. I think that's because it's simple, yet very versatile to everyone's preference. There are tons of savory or sweet toppings and fillings that can be served with crepes; the variety is endless.


One way of serving crepe is by making it into a cake; hence crepe cake, crepe gateau or mille crepe. With my gateau, I chose to have an orange cream filling, but I should have known better. Despite the help of a full blast air-condition, the cream I whipped melted so quick because of the summer heat.


Regardless of the misfortune of the filling, the cake tastes sensational. The taste is very similar to that of crepe Suzette - my favourite crepe if I may add. This cake is really easy to whip up; well taking into consideration of the weather that is. There's only two components to this cake - crepes and orange cream. Assembly is fun and easy.

  1. Line the sides and bottom of your mold with cling film then with crepes. Allow the cling film as well as crepes to hang over the rim of the mold.
  2. Pipe a layer of orange cream (or your chosen filling).
  3. Stack a sheet of crepe on top of the filling, folding the perimeter of the crepe to fit into the mold.
  4. Pipe a layer of filling again then stack another crepe. Keep on piping and stacking until you reach the rim of your mold finishing with a layer of orange cream.
  5. Fold the crepes that are hanging over your mold towards the top of the orange cream.
  6. Use another crepe to fully cover the top of the cake. Wrap with cling film and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before garnishing and serving.
Once  the gateau has been chilled you can now unmold and garnish. This is how the gateau would look like once you have unmold it.


As for the garnish, use spare crepes and pleat them on top of the cake; finish off with orange wedges and orange peel. If you want some grandeur, flambe the whole gateau with rum, Grand Marnier or Cointreau.


This method of making a crepe gateau is adapted from Le Cordon Bleu Dessert Techniques. A more simple way of making a crepe gateau is by simply stacking crepes and filling alternately. About fifteen layers of crepe as well as filling would look handsome.


I had some excess crepe and orange cream, so I made some crepe fans then just topped it with the orange cream. It's the same taste with the gateau of course, just served in a different way.

Components used for this dessert treat:
Bisou bisou,
Charlotte

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

English Trifle


I came across these lovely luscious raspberries last weekend, and couldn't resist not buying them. I was undecided on what to do with them; all I know is, I want them. Ideas battled in my head, from raspberry pie to Nigella's raspberry chocolate pavlova to just simply eating them fresh with whipped cream. In the end, English trifle allured me most.


Trifle was created centuries ago as a way to utilize old cakes. Trifle has certainly been a fabulous invention that it has become a main stream dessert. People are now purposely baking or buying sponge cakes to be able to make a trifle.


Trifle is made of pieces of sponge cake soaked in fortified wine like sherry, and topped with fresh fruits, custard and whipped cream. It is quite a flexible dessert; you can play up with the flavour of the sponge as well as the fruits and custard. You can also be adventurous with your alcohol by using liqueurs or liquors, or if you opt to be conservative, fruit juice will do. Nowadays, people even add gelatin into their trifle. It's a matter of preference.


As for my trifle. I used a plain sponge and sandwiched it with raspberry jam. Then, I soaked my sponge with plum wine, topped it with fresh raspberries, chocolate custard and whipped cream. A sprinkle of toasted sliced almonds for the garnish.


It was a really lovely dessert; it's like heaven in a glass. Not only does it taste divine; it looks absolutely spectacular especially when made in a glass trifle bowl. But since I'm only baking for two, I used wine glasses. I still got the effect of that of a trifle bowl, but in a rather chic and romantic individual serving.

Components used for this dessert treat:
Bisou bisou,
Charlotte

Friday, 18 June 2010

Swiss Roll

I've been trying to find out where Swiss roll originated from, but had no luck. One thing definite, it didn't come from Switzerland. A lot of countries have their own version of Swiss roll, and they call it differently as well. Jelly roll and roulade are the two most common alias for the Swiss roll.


Regardless of its history, I think this dessert was adapted by many countries because of it's dainty look. It's also such a flexible dessert, you can play up with the flavour of the sponge as well as the filling.

As for my version, I used a plain sponge and filled it with raspberry jam and whipped cream. Swiss Roll is definitely an old-fashion timeless dessert.

Components used for this dessert treat:
Bisou bisou,
Charlotte

Monday, 14 June 2010

Cream Cheese Brownies

Brownies, oh brownies! It used to be one of my favourite treats; now it's just on my 'has been' list. I sort of have a love-hate relationship with brownies. I used to sell loads of them during Christmas for three years, but as a result I got sick of eating brownies. Even just the mere scent of a brownie batter made me feel icky... It went so bad that at one point, I actually had to wear face mask while making them.


Don't get me wrong, I still love making and sharing my brownies with people. It gives me great satisfaction when people are enjoying them. My repulse to brownies is not as bad now, I can actually get myself to eat a piece or two! Oh, and no need for face mask when making them. Not only did brownies make my small business a success, it is actually the first dessert I made when I was 12; brownies made me love baking. So brownies will forever be dear to me no matter what!


What's great about brownies is you can play around with different flavour combinations like peanut butter brownies, peppermint brownies, black forest brownies, etc. One of my favourite variation is the cream cheese brownies. Not only does it taste great, it looks exquisite as well. The marble effect on top of the brownies makes the comforting look of brownies into pure sophistication.

Components used for this dessert treat:
Bisou bisou,
Charlotte

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Almond Sansrival

Sansrival, pronounced "sans-rEE-val", is a well-known Filipino snack and dessert. There are three main components to a sansrival; crisp meringue, buttercream and chopped nuts. The layers of crisp meringue are sandwiched and covered with buttercream then fully coated with nuts. Cashew nuts are traditionally used for sansrival, but now a days almond, macadamia and even pistachio has become popular choices.


Sansrival is definitely an irresistible treat for me. It entices my whole sensory system... The generous amount of nuts coated on the entire g√Ęteau visually appeals to me. The smell wafting out the oven while baking the meringue and toasting the nuts stimulates my appetite. The crisp feel I get as my knife hits against the meringue, and the crunch I hear while slicing through it makes me all giddy. The explosion of nutty + buttery in my palate is absolutely delicious! And finally, the crunch of the meringue as well as the toasted nut leaves me in cloud 9.


I do love a good sansrival treat. I'm a huge fan of it, although I can't eat a lot. It's a bit sweet for my liking, but I still love the nutty and buttery flavour so I compromise by having small servings

Components used for this dessert treat:
Bisou bisou,
Charlotte

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Linzer Torte

If you like the marriage of lemon and raspberry in your dessert, then you would like this Austrian classic -- Linzer Torte.

 


Linzer Torte is one of the desserts I've always  been curious about. It's a classic dessert not known by many. It's like a tart, but the difference being the crust contributes a lot to the flavour profile of this dessert. The lemon twist of this torte is all in the crust. Then the filling is a thin layer of raspberry preserve.


I've learned of this dessert way back 2006; I remember having a good impression of it. The look is so homey and comforting.

Taste wise... well you know me with lemony treats! And I think the sweetness of the raspberry preserve just added a good balance to the tang of the lemon.


I'd love to one day be able to try an authentic Linzer Torte in an Austrian cafe with a cuppa while people watching. But for now, I'm happy enjoying this creation at the comforts of my home. I think a good scoop of vanilla ice cream would also compliment this treat well...



As for these cookies, well I had some excess dough from the torte... I didn't want to waste them. Plus this is a version of Linzer Torte in a cookie form, hence Linzer cookies.

Component used for this dessert treat:
Bisou bisou,
Charlotte

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Creme Caramel

Most of the desserts I'm thinking of baking this month only needs the egg whites. Since I'm not too keen on storing egg yolks, I have to think of what to do with them first, while on a mini mission to collect the whites. First thing that came into mind... creme caramel!

I don't really know where this French dessert originated from, but whoever made this creation first is a genius. I think it's one of the most simple comforting dessert there is. A lot of countries have their own version of this creamy treat. In Italy it's called crema caramella, and in Spain it is called a flan; this dessert also greatly influenced countries that have been colonized by Spain.

One of which is my home country, Philippines. In Philippines creme caramel is known as leche flan. It is one of the most popular dessert there in the sense that it's most likely to be the ever present dessert at Filipino festivals or events. There's another version of leche flan which is called tocino del cielo; it uses a lot more egg yolks and sugar making it extra extra creamy! Watch out for the calories though... 

Do you have a version of creme caramel in your home country? 

Components used for this dessert treat:
Bisou bisou,
Charlotte

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