Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Steamed Vanilla cake


I was/is on a mission searching for alternate ways to satisfy my craving for baking something as my oven gave up. I searched a lot for alternative ways to bake a cake without using the oven. I got a lot of microwave based recipes, but I read that most of the cakes baked in microwave use cocoa/chocolate chip a lot and V doesn't like chocolate cake so much, in fact he would take just a bite so that I don't feel bad after I all the effort I put into making one :D ...the rest of the recipes that doesn't use cocoa/chocolate were the ones which wasnt rated or reviewed , and i didn't want to ruin my day with such a recipe as this would be the first time I would be baking something without an oven. I then came upon this recipe on allrecipes.com about a steamed Chinese cake. It had good ratings and I followed some advice from some reviewers about substitutions. I 'baked' (steamed) this cake in a vegetable steamer, and the outcome was surprisingly the softest sponge cake I ever had :) It was moist, sweet, and held its shape well. I initially thought that a steamed cake would be like a dumpling or something, but this turned out to surprise me a lot. When I felt the cake first with the knife, I thought the texture resembled the outcome of Idli ;) , but when the cake was cool, it hardened a bit more on the base and formed some crumbs too. I was more than satisfied with the outcome, and hence have bookmarked it. Here is the recipe I found with my substitutions:



Ingredients:

4 eggs
1 cups white sugar
3 tablespoons orange juice
1 1/2 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 tsp vanilla extract and 1/2 tsp almond extract
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar for dusting



Method:

Keep a vegetable steamer or Bamboo steamer over simmering
water. Make sure it is large enough to hold the baking pan. I used a loaf pan. But the recipe calls for a 9 inch square pan. Line it with wax paper.



Separate the eggs. Beat the yolks along with the juice and sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until the mixture has increased about three times in volume. Sift together the flour and the baking powder. Sift it again over the egg mixture, and fold in gently. Blend in the vanilla and almond extracts.



Whip the egg whites in a clean bowl to stiff, not dry, peaks. Fold into yolk
mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and smooth out the edges. Tap the
pan gently on the counter to get rid of large air bubbles.



Place the pan into the steamer. Cover the top of the steamer with a kitchen
towel/parchment paper (parchment paper causes bubbles as I experienced it in my attempt), and place the lid on top; the towel will absorb any steam that collects
on top from dripping onto the cake.


Steam for about 20 minutes, or until a
toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Dust
with confectioner's sugar. Tada...your steamed cake is ready !

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