Friday, January 4, 2013

Make not lemonade but Lemon Chiffon

As the saying goes, when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. For me, in 2013, I make Lemon Chiffon. The reasons I decided to do a lemon version are - one of my Christmas presents from my boys is a reamer and the other, I wanted to adapt a recipe from a book I got my hands on ie  Vintage Cakes: More Than 90 Heirloom Recipes for Tremendously Good Cakes by Jane Brocket. Notice the cup at the background in the picture below? They were flown in from the US and each of these 6 cups depicts the two different days of Christmas. Awesome! Gonna pass them down to the next generation.
Tweaking the recipe produced a cake that was moist, light, flavorful and tangy. However, I wished it was a little more light and less compact. I reckoned it could be the brand of flour I used and the amount of lemon juice which I liberally added (no mention of lemon juice in the recipe and so I wondered how it could be called a Lemon Chiffon)
Lemon Chiffon Cake (adapted from Vintage Cakes)

For the cake
6 eggs separated and an additional of 2 egg whites
230g Japanese wheat flour
10g baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
300g caster sugar (150g for the dry ingredients and 150g for the egg whites)
125ml vegetable oil
finely grated zest of 2 lemons
100ml of water
50ml of lemon juice (approx as amount is up to the individual)
1 tsp of cream of tartar and 
1tsp of vanilla extract (optional)

For the glaze
600g icing sugar
juice of 1 lemon

1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees C
2. Separate the 6 eggs and combine the egg whites with egg whites from 2 additional eggs
3. Place the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl and whisk it with a hand whisk - just to mix them up or you could sieve the dry ingredients
4. Add the caster sugar and combine it with the (3)
5. Make a well in the center and add the yolks, lemon zest, oil, water and lemon juice
6. Using a hand held mixer, beat till well combined
7. Place egg whites in a clean bowl
8. Whisk them till gentle peaks form then add the cream of tartar, caster sugar and vanilla extract, whisking till completely smooth
9. Spoon the egg whites into the sponge batter and fold them in carefully
10. Pour the batter into a 24cm cake tin
11. Pour excess batter into mini chiffon cake tins (optional)
12. Bake the cake for 40min - 50min. Insert a skewer to see if it comes out clean
13. Once cake is done, remove from the oven and invert the cake. Let it cool completely before removing from cake tin

To make the glaze
1. Combine the lemon juice and icing sugar till you get a light and runny texture
2. Drizzle the runny icing sugar on the cooled cake
There you go, Lemon Chiffon. On hindsight, I should have followed the recipe and try it out. Hmm...