Sunday 31 July 2016

Chiffon Rainbow ‘Drip’ Cake with Chiffon 'Lollipops'

Here's my first Chiffon Rainbow “Drip cake”! It's for a lovely mummy friend's sweet girl Olivia, and thankful it was well-loved!

It was an experiment to see if I could combine 'waves' with 'rainbow chiffon' from Creative baking: Chiffon Cakes to make Rainbow Chiffon “Drip” cake. I was really nervous but thankful it panned out neatly! 

Creative baking: Chiffon Cakes

The sweet chiffon 'lollipops' will be in Deco Chiffon Cakes coming soon within the next one two months. Preorders may open around mid August!

Photoshoots for Deco Chiffon Cakes

I made a ‘sweet’ from a cake pop and 2 hearts. Here's another angle of the sweet chiffon cake!

The photos were taken by the lovely mummy friend whom I made this cake for!

Have a sweet week ahead!

With lots of love,

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Saturday 30 July 2016

Sheep Matcha Macaron Carousel

Ever since I posted the pink unicorn macaron carousel, I have been getting lots of requests for macaron carousels. I had to turn down many of them due to my full baking schedule. I was secretly hoping someone would request for a different design because I don't like to repeat my designs. Here's a variation of carousel that I had fun with although the assembly was nerve wrecking as usual. Presenting my first sheep themed macaron carousel!

I used matcha to colour the shells a little besides adding gel food colouring to reduce the use of artificial colouring. As Matcha powder oxidizes when exposed to air, artificial colouring is needed to prevent the carousel from appearing duller over time.

I used the regular non-reduced sugar version of the macaron shell recipe to make the sheep and carousel structure. I added 6g of Matcha powder to 200g of almond meal recipe. You may refer to this post for the detailed steps with reduced sugar and non reduced sugar versions of shells.

Here's how the mass looks like when coloured with just matcha powder. I didn't add too much as I didn't want the shells to turn out too dull.

I divided the mass into two equal portions and coloured one light green and one dark green. I used a bit of charcoal powder (about 1/4 tsp) to colour dark green.

You may refer to this post for the dimensions of the shells required to make the carousel and the respective baking times. One thing I did differently here is I made a scalloped roof (seashell pattern) instead of a simple circle. I find this effect very pretty and also very helpful for positioning the five poles later on during assembly. The regular stripes serve as a ruler/marker for positioning the poles at regular intervals easily.

In order to create the scalloped pattern, pipe alternate stripes and dry until a sticky membrane forms in an air-conditioned room and/or under a fan. About 15-30 minutes.

Pipe the other set of stripes when the first alternate set has partially dried.

Remember to bang the tray on the table and use a toothpick to pop air bubbles if necessary.

I baked the carousel shells and sheep shells on different days. The sheep macaron shells were baked along with the Fox and Rabbit plush toy macarons from Descendants of the Sun, some Snoopy and Charlie Brown macarons, and some bulldog macarons.

Here's how I piped the sheep in stages...

Here are some freshly baked shells! Looking pretty already!

Decorate the sheep with royal icing and edible marker.

I filled the shells on the carousel with Matcha white chocolate. The recipe can be found in my Creative Baking: Macarons book or over here. Carousels need to be able to withstand room temperature storage and display in warm Singapore so I always use non-refrigerated fillings for carousels. You may use very firm ganaches too if you like.

It takes two days to assemble a macaron carousel as the central pillar needs time to stabilize.

Day 1 of assembly involves mounting the sheep (or whatever subject matter) onto paper straws. It doesn't matter if the pole length is an estimated one. You can trim just before mounting onto the structure.

Filling a sheep!

Sheep on poles!

The central pillar also has to be assembled on Day 1. Fill the largest macaron, one 6cm macaron and two 3.5cm macarons with filling. Use royal icing to attach the largest macaron to a cakeboard and all the macarons to each other as shown below. I decided to add on some store-bought sugar flowers to add some colour.

Assemble the roof with Matcha filling as glue. I forgot to take photo of this. My apologies.

I had some loose pieces as well but I filled them with dark chocolate ganache and lemon curd. Replace lime with lemon from the recipe. These macarons have to be stored in the fridge.

Day 2 of assembly involves mounting the roof onto the central pillar, glueing them together with royal icing.

Stick the poles onto the structure with royal icing. Cut the poles to appropriate length before you attach it to the main structure.

Decorate as you wish :).

Here's a top view of the carousel! I really love the scalloped roof!

Store the carousel in airtight condition at cool room temperature. It can keep for 1-2 weeks.

With love,
Phay Shing

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Friday 29 July 2016

'Monster Truck' Snowy Chiffon Cake

Can you spot the odd one out among the Monster trucks? ;)

This was a very unique request for a friend. She wanted me to make one chiffon Monster truck together with her toy pals on a snowy Frozen landscape. If you find this cake familiar, yes the cake and recipe is in Creative baking: Chiffon Cakes!

It may look simple but carving and assembling of the Monster truck was a lot of work! I was rather apprehensive about this project but thankful the cake came out well and it was well-received.

Am out of steam still with blogging and family so this will be a short post. Sorry and have a great weekend!

With love,

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Wednesday 27 July 2016

Pandan Kaya Gula Melaka Cupcake Dahlias

This was an unplanned bake that blessed a friend's father on Father's Day. Pandan kaya gula melaka sponge and pudding cupcakes topped with chiffon cake Dahlias!

I needed to do a trial for drippy pudding down the sides of a bigger floral sponge and pudding cake so I took the chance to make a few cupcakes for my friend who has been patiently waiting for a chance to taste my Pandan kaya gula melaka cake that many people raved about at the high tea.

You may refer to this post for the cupcake recipe and this post for the layer cake used to make the dahlias.

I made a thinner Pandan layer cake this time so there were three sponge layers in the cupcake.

Pandan chiffon cake cutouts!

Alternating Pandan sponge and gula melaka pudding layers 

I used Daisy cutters of different sizes to create the dahlias.

I cut a circle out of the bottom two Daisy cutouts such that the upper layers can sit into the hole a little. My friend has kindly taken a nice photo of the cross-section to show this as well as the layering of sponge and pudding.

 Stick some white dragees with marshmellow at the center. I made some white paint by dissolving white gel colouring in syrup to highlight the edges of each petal with a small brush. Finish off by brushing some syrup (dissolve 5g sugar in 20ml hot water) to keep the flowers moist.

Store in fridge for at 1-2 days before serving to let the flavours come together.

My friend's parents loved the cupcakes! Thank God that such an unplanned bake could bless a family :). Here's her very encouraging words posted on Facebook:

"Macaron queen Phay Shing does it again! Was lucky enough to get just a few of her pandan chiffon cupcakes sandwiched with gula melaka pudding and topped with pink chiffon sponge flowers for Fathers' Day. 

The pillowy sponge and soft pudding were super fragrant with the magic combination of pandan, coconut milk and gula melaka, and though very satisfying, these cupcakes weren't at all heavy given that there wasn't any cream or butter in them. Daddy was most pleased :)"

Check out this post for a wider variety of flowers adorning the cupcakes!

With love,
Phay Shing

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Sunday 24 July 2016

Watermelon Fruits-themed Tier Chiffon Cake (Watermelon & Pandan-flavored)

This was made for my dear friend’s daughter, Eva! Last year I made Tinkerbell Tier Chiffon Cake for her. This cake may look effortless but it was really a lot of work! So I'm really thankful managed to pulled it off and it was well-received.

This is the first time I’m trying out Watermelon-flavoured Chiffon Cake for the Chiffon ‘Watermelon’. The watermelon taste is a bit subtle I have to admit, but nice and light according to my friend. Fruity flavours without zest are harder to come through as compared to tea or chocolate flavours.

I made watermelon juice from fresh watermelons for the chiffon cake. The green chiffon layer making the skin was pandan-flavoured, that was really yummy. I think you can also replace the watermelon flavour with strawberry that is stronger tasting with strawberry paste. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any watermelon extract to enhance the subtle flavour.

Watermelon-flavoured Watermelon Chiffon Cake (with Pandan Chiffon ‘skin’)
5 egg yolks
33g castor sugar
65g vegetable/ corn oil
79g watermelon juice (freshly blended) – you may wish to replace with strawberry puree + paste
100g Prima cake flour, sifted
A pinch of salt
Natural red coloring from PME
Pandan paste

7 egg whites
¼ tsp cream of tartar
75g castor sugar

Freshly squeezed watermelon juice and natural coloring from PME

1. Preheat oven to 160°C. *Optional: I used steam baking.

2. Whisk egg yolks with sugar until light, fluffy and well-mixed.

3. Add in oil and mix well. Then add in oil and watermelon juice and whisk till well-combined.

4. Whisk in sifted cake flour and mix till well-combined.

5. Divide the batter into 3:1:1. Add respective colour/flavour (pandan paste and natural PME red) into each batter.

6. Prepare meringue:

a. In a grease-free, dry metal bowl, using electric mixer, whisk egg whites with cream of tartar till frothy.

b. Add in ½ castor sugar for meringue and whisk at high speed till soft peaks form.

c. Add in rest of the castor sugar for meringue and whisk till firm peaks form, or just the point of stiff peak. Firm peaks give finer, softer texture.

7. Divide meringue 3:1:1 and gently fold into respective egg yolk batter.

8. Fill the pink batter into an ungreased 7-inch chiffon tube pan, followed by light green batter, and then dark green batter.

9. Bake at 160°C for 15 min, 140°C for 31+ min, or until skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean. **If you use steam baking, you may need to bake for a few more minutes.

10. Invert pan to cool on a wire rack completely.

11. Unmould the chiffon cake by hand (see video tutorial ‘Hand unmoulding Chiffon cakes for a clean finishing’).

*Updated (20/10/16) 
Step-by-step picture guide for Watermelon Chiffon Cake is now found in Deco Chiffon Cake Basics, a new step-by-step picture guide.

Base pandan chiffon cake

Pandan Chiffon Cake recipe from here. I used a 9-inch tube pan in this cake, hence the recipe is doubled, with one batter having ½ amount of pandan paste. Here, I made the pandan chiffon more ‘pang’ by using liquid coconut oil (from cold storange/iherb).


Watermelon: You may find the watermelon familiar. These watermelons are in Creative baking: Chiffon Cakes; you can find a video tutorial for watermelons below. Here, I added a light green layer. I also folded the paper cone from SKP to make it pyramidal so that it looks more like a wedge.

Folded the paper cone into a pyramidal shape to look like a wedge

Video tutorial for watermelon cake pops in Creative baking: Chiffon Cakes

Banana: Similar to Tokyo banana here by Ochikeron, it’s made from a swiss roll with the ends tighter to make the tips pointed. Lemon-flavoured.
Pear: I made it similar to the Tokyo Banana too from a swiss roll, but rolled the centre tighter to make a waist. It's made with the same pandan batter as the base cake. I cut the leaves from pandan sheet cake using a leaves cutter. Stems are from rolled cake.
Tangerines: These small sweet oranges were from 5-cm silicone cake pops moulds. I rounded up the base by cupping with my thumb and index finger. Orange-flavoured.
Apple: From Iwaki brand glass bowl, Strawberry yoghurt flavoured, you may also be interested in marbled ones here by Phay shing. Here I used the same recipe as watermelon cake pops.
Cherries: From 3-cm cake pops moulds, cup at the base to round it.
Grapes: From 3-cm cake pop moulds, cup at the base then pinch it to make it oval (similar technique will be in Deco chiffon cakes).

I used melted marshmallows to glue the fruits and letterings which I cut out from chiffon sheet cake using alphabet cutters from SKP/Phoon Huat. Simply sprinkle some water and pop the marshmallows into the oven! =)

Thankful cake was well-received! Happy birthday to Eva!

With lots of love,

Creative Chiffon Cookbooks with Marshall Cavendish:

Creative Baking: Chiffon Cakes

Great news for Malaysians, the cookbook can be found in Popular KL and selected outlets now =).

and Deco Chiffon Cakes (photoshoots)

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Friday 22 July 2016

Descendants of the Sun Plush Toy Macarons with Lemon Filling

I seldom have the capacity or motivation to bake items for fun unless I have the compulsion to make them. This bake is one of them :). It's for a special friend whom I come to know because of macarons, lemon curd and the ever popular K-drama Descendants of the Sun. What better way to do something special for a friend than to combine the things that came up during our blossoming friendship than this creation!

Fox and rabbit plush toy macarons with lemon white chocolate ganache and lemon curd!

I am not a fan of dramas in general because I don't have the time for them but got hooked on watching this one so I got to know about the comrade and the girlfriend ;).

You may refer to this post for the generic recipe for both reduced sugar and non-reduced sugar versions of macaron shells. I used the regular non-reduced sugar version due to the complexity of the design. Reduced sugar shells tend to take a longer time to dry.

You may refer to my Creative Baking: Macarons book for more tips, or refer to the video tutorials for macaron basics and piping complex shapes

Just to share some photos of the process...

Piping the shells!

Freshly baked shells!

The most challenging part about decorating the shells is the camou pattern of the uniforms. I used edible black, brown and green markers to create the patterns. Make use of the brown and black markers to deepen the green such that it appears less neon. Begin with the black patches, followed by the brown and finally the green.

I was actually working on assembling some cupcakes, baking some Miffy shortbread cookies and decorating Snoopy and Charlie Brown macarons (my friend requested for these macarons as well) before I worked on these fellas. I was pretty exhausted by then so I could only manage to finish decorating some of them...

Day 1 of deco!

After a good night's rest I was more able to finish it off!

Take a peek at the feet!

My friend was joking about what I would do with so many leftover egg yolks from baking macarons so the topic of lemon curd came up since it's one way of using up excess egg yolks :).

You may find the recipe for lemon white chocolate ganache and lemon curd over here. Replace lime with lemon.

As lemon curd has a high liquid content, you may want to insulate the curd with something else that has a higher fat content such as buttercream or ganache. Otherwise the shells will turn soggy faster. If you are consuming the macarons soon, you may fill them with pure lemon curd. The whipped ganache holds up very well in Singapore's hot weather so it's good as an insulating layer.

Pipe a thin layer of ganache covering the base of bottom shell, then pipe a wall of ganache to contain the curd.

Fill the wells with lemon curd. Pipe a little ganache over the curd before sandwiching top shell on.

All of them filled with lemon flavoured filling as requested :)

This has got to be classified as one of those "too cute to eat!" bakes :p.

With lots of love,
Phay Shing

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Tuesday 19 July 2016

3D Anpanman Chiffon Cake

This is a cute 3D Anpanman made from chiffon cake, that's my largest 3D chiffon figurine so far, measuring 9-inch tall and 8-inch wide! It was slightly nerve-wreaking but thankful it was very well-received! It's modelled after a cute 3D Anpanman inflatable toy I saw from a toy store in Mt Fuji, Japan. 'Anpan' translates to 'azuki bean bread' in Japanese, a well-loved bread bun in every culture! Perhaps our local version of the superhero will be 'red bean roti boy! =p

I really had fun making this cute cake! Basically I combined 2 ball cake pans to make the head, on top of strawberry milk chiffon in a doll cake pan. Hands and feet were from cake pops and bowls. The arms were from swiss rolls. The nose and cheeks from egg shells and cake pops. The ball cake pan uses the reduced egg yolk vanilla chiffon cake recipe. The strawberry milk chiffon is sort of a new recipe, in which I substituted the strawberry puree from the strawberry chiffon recipe with strawberry milk (from my kids' stash) for more milky taste, and also 'cos I'm a fan of strawberry milk =).

Strawberry Milk Chiffon Cake (8-inch chiffon tube pan or doll pan)

5 egg yolks
33g castor sugar
65g vegetable/ corn oil
82g strawberry milk
100g prima cake flour, sifted
Natural red coloring from PME (optional)
strawberry paste, 1/2 tsp

7 egg whites
¼ tsp cream of tartar
75g castor sugar

1. Preheat oven to 160°C. *Optional: I used steam baking, i.e. I placed a pan of water under the lowest rack before preheating – to control oven temperature, prevent cracks and for moister texture.

2. Whisk egg yolks with sugar until light, fluffy and well-mixed.

3. Add in oil and mix well. Then add in strawberry milk and paste and whisk till well-combined.

4. Whisk in sifted cake flour and mix till well-combined. Add a few drops of natural PME coloring for the required shade (optional).

5. Prepare meringue:

a. In a grease-free, dry metal bowl, using electric mixer, whisk egg whites with cream of tartar till frothy.

b. Add in ½ castor sugar for meringue and whisk at high speed till soft peaks form.

c. Add in rest of the castor sugar for meringue and whisk till firm peaks form, or just the point of stiff peak. Firm peaks give finer, softer texture.

6. Pour the pink batter into the pan, till 85% full. Gently tap on counter top to remove air bubbles.

7. Bake at 160°C for 15 min, 150°C for 10 min 140°C for 31+ min, or until skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean. **If you use steam baking, you may need to bake for a few more minutes.

8. Invert pan to cool on a wire rack completely.

9. Unmould the chiffon cake by hand (see video tutorial ‘Hand unmoulding Chiffon cakes for a clean finishing’).

The chiffon cake smells lovely and milky.

With lots of love,

Some updates..

Honored to be involved in Popular Bookfest cookout day this year! I will be doing a live baking demonstration on how to make a Christmas Snowman Chiffon Cake! Do drop by Suntec on 8th Dec Thurs at 6 pm (Convention Halls 401-406) =).

Creative Baking: Deco Chiffon Cakes is on Christmas promo at Times SG and also book depository! More details in link.

Creative Baking: Chiffon Cakes will also be on promo at Popfest.

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Monday 18 July 2016

Cupcakes & Ice-cream Cone Shortbread Cookies

I have a request for a whooping 100 shortbread cookies in the shape of ice-cream cones and cupcakes. Here they are :)

These are modelled after the macarons that appear on the cover page of my Creative Baking: Macarons book. Shortbread cookies have the advantage of containing less sugar as decoration with royal icing is kept to the minimum. The sugar content in the cookie dough is not too high either.

I combined the ingredients together in a different way from how I did it previously. I have been using the method of cutting butter into flour/sugar mixture but thought of using the creaming method this time round to incorporate the colouring/ flavoring with minimal kneading after flour is added.

I made templates using clear plastic files to cut out the dough since I don't have cookie cutters for these designs. Very tedious but at least I don't and up having a huge collection of cookie cutters that I probably just use once in a lifetime. You may check out this post on how to make your own templates here.

Homemade templates and knife I use for cutting cookie dough

(makes about 60 ice-cream cone and 60 cupcake cookies. About 4cm in size)

Pink/red dough
70g icing sugar
140g unsalted butter, softened
190g plain flour
20g cornflour (you may replace with plain flour)
1/4 tsp strawberry paste
1/8 tsp white gel food colouring  (optional)
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
Few drops of red gel food colouring

Brown dough
60g icing sugar
120g unsalted butter, softened
165g plain flour
5g cocoa powder
10g corn flour
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt

Blue dough
60g icing sugar
120g unsalted butter, softened
165g plain flour
15g cornflour
1/4 tsp salt
Blue gel food colouring

1. Use an electric mixer to cream butter, salt and icing sugar until pale and fluffy.

2. I will use the pink dough for illustration here. Add any liquid flavouring/colouring/extracts and mix well.

3. Add sifted plain flour and cornflour (and cocoa powder for brown colour) in a few batches. Mix until well combined with a spatula.

4. Portion out about 50g of pink dough and colour it red. Divide the rest of the pink dough into 4 or 5 batches. Place each batch between two baking sheets and roll to thickness of 4mm. Freeze or refrigerate until firm. Roll the brown and blue dough to about 5mm thick. Roll the red dough to about 8mm thickness. These thickness don't have to be too precise.

5. In order to create the ice-cream cone, use the template to cut out the outline on the brown dough. Return the dough to freezer when it softens too much to work with. I use a small knife to trace the outline with the help of the homemade plastic template. Place the cutouts on the baking tray lined with baking sheet. I find it helpful to place the dough on reusable freezer packs to prevent the dough from softening too fast.

6. Cut out the pink scoop of ice-cream and attach it to the base cut-out.

7. Sprinkle some rainbow sprinkles on the scoop of ice-cream. Gently press the sprinkles onto the cookie dough. Refrigerate the tray of cookie cut-outs while preheating the oven to 150°C.

8. For the cupcake cookies, cut out the blue base.

9. Cut out the pink cake and stick on top.

10. Use a drinking straw or a small circle cookie cutter to cut out the cherries. Carefully press the dough together where the boundaries meet.

11. Carefully sprinkle some chocolate rice on the pink cake. Chill the tray of dough cutouts.

12. Bake at 150°C for 14-17 minutes at the middle rack. Be careful not to brown the cookies.

After two days of hard work, here's what I achieved! I still had two-thirds of the cupcakes left unbaked!

Prepare white and brown royal icing. Use cocoa powder to colour the icing brown. Pipe the details on the cones and cupcakes cases.

Let the icing dry completely before storing in an airtight container.

I had to pack all 100 individually so it really tested my patience :p.

With love,
Phay Shing

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