Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Breakfast Chiffon

For the past week, I have been reading up every night, on how to make chiffon cakes without using any leavening agent. In the past, all my chiffon cakes were made with either baking powder or self-raising flour. I have copied several recipes from this chiffon cookbook '戚风蛋糕秘法传授' which I borrowed from a close one some time back. The recipes from this book do not use any baking powder. I wonder how it is possible to create the volume as the ingredients are similar to most chiffon recipes. Even the number of egg whites used is not that many. Some recipes will call for 4 whites and 3 yolks even though baking powder is used. For a 17cm tube pan, the recipes from this book call for 110g whites (about 3 whites for eggs that weigh 65g with shells on) and 40g yolks (about 2 and a half yolks). For my usual chiffon recipes, I use 3 egg whites and 3 yolks, not much difference isn't it?

The only unique thing is, corn flour is added when beating the egg whites. I don't know the chemistry behind, but I guess corn flour helps to stabilise the egg whites so that upon folding with the yolk mixture, it won't deflate too much? and also probably helps the whites to stablise and expand during baking? Pardon the 'jargon' used here, unless you are familiar with making a chiffon cake, all these may sound alien to you ;)

Many Chinese bloggers (from Taiwan, China) have baked beautiful chiffon cakes without baking powder, reading their tips and step by step illustrations posted on their blogs gave me the very much need assurance that I shouldn't fare too badly. I went ahead to give it a go even though I have never been good at baking chiffon cakes (^^")


I picked up this chocolate and nut chiffon recipe as I find that it is quite unusual to bake a chiffon with toppings. Wouldn't the weight of the toppings prevent the cake from rising? Wouldn't the toppings sink into the batter during baking?

I didn't use the exact toppings since besides walnuts, I do not have apricots, cashew nuts or pistachios. So, I used my granola combo...walnuts, dried cranberries and rolled oats.


Reading up tips and do's and dont's is one thing, putting everything into practise is another. Alas, I didn't do a good job while folding the whites to the yolk batter :_(

I deflated most of the egg whites (which was whisked to a nice, glossy texture! yeah!!) while trying to break up the lumps of whites trapped in the batter, maybe the whites were too stiff?? The cake rose well above the rim half way into baking. But, it was a short-lived glory. The cake started shrinking even before the baking time was up. It only managed to hover around the rim of the pan, ***sigh***


The texture of the cake was pretty good though. The crumb was tender, moist and springy :):)

Despite the long baking time, the walnuts did not get burnt. In fact it was very nicely roasted.  This cake, which I shall name it as Granola Chiffon, is an excellent choice for breakfast. What better way to have some oats in your diet without forcing yourself to swallow a bowl of oat porridge? Besides the nutty toppings, chopped dark chocolates was added in the batter. It makes the cake taste even better!


One downside of making chiffon cakes with toppings is, upon inverting the pan to cool the cake, some toppings (those that did not come into direct contact with the batter) dropped all over the table. Anyway, it is a small matter, I picked up the pieces and put them in my mouth ;)

I will try another recipe, I hope I will get the folding right the next time. Wish me luck!


Granola Chiffon Cake

Ingredients:
(for 17cm or 7" tube pan)
(measurements in brackets are for 20cm or 8" tube pan)

110g (180g)  egg whites* (cold from fridge)
55g    (90g)  caster sugar
5g     (10g)   corn flour

40g  (70g)    egg yolks*
36g  (60g)    water
36g  (60g)    vegetable oil
9g    (15g)    cocoa powder
42g  (70g)    cake flour
10g  (20g)    sugar

60g (100g)   dark chocolate**, chopped into cubes

15g  (25g)   walnuts, coarsely chopped
15g  (25g)   dried cranberries
15g  (25g)   rolled oats

(* use fresh eggs, and cold egg whites. Remove eggs from fridge and separate them just before using.
** cut the chocolates into small cubes, around 0.5~1 cm, so that they won't sink too much in the batter, and yet they shouldn't be too small till they melt away during baking.)

Method:
  1. Sieve cake flour, set aside. Sieve corn flour, set aside. 
  2. Place egg yolks, water, vegetable oil and cocoa powder in a mixing bowl. With an electric mixer (I used a manual hand whisk), whisk the mixture till well combined. Sieve over the cake flour and whisk till the flour is fully incorporated into the batter. Add in sugar, whisk to combine.
  3. In a clean, dry mixing bowl, beat egg whites with an electric mixer on low speed until mixture becomes frothy and foamy. Turn to high speed and gradually beat in the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until soft peaks forms. Add in the corn flour together with the last tablespoon of sugar. The egg whites should appear smooth and glossy. (Do not over beat the whites still stiff, it is better to beat the whites still soft peaks for easy folding with the yolk batter. The soft peak stage is reached when the peaks of the whites curl over and droop slightly.)
  4. With a spatula, gently fold in 1/3 of the beaten egg whites into the yolk mixture until just blended. Repeat with 1/2 of the remaining egg white. Finally, pour the resulting batter to the remaining egg white. Fold in to combine. Next, fold in the chopped chocolates.
  5. Pour batter into a 17cm tube pan (do not grease the pan). Tap the pan lightly on a table top to get rid of any trapped air bubbles in the batter. Sprinkle walnuts, dried cranberries and rolled oats over the surface.
  6. Bake in pre-heated oven at 160 degC for 35 mins, (for 20cm pan bake for 50 mins) or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. (When lightly pressed the cake will spring back). Remove from the oven and drop the pan at a height of 20~30cm onto a table top. This action helps to keep the springy texture of the cake when it is left to cool.
  7. Invert the pan immediately and let cool completely before unmould. To remove the cake from the pan, run a thin-bladed knife around the inside of the pan and the center core. Release the cake and run the knife along the base of the pan to remove the cake.
Recipe source: 戚风蛋糕秘法传授 by Noriko Ozawa

66 comments:

  1. hi, where do you get ghirardeli baking choc in Singapore?

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  2. HHB, the chiffon looks very nicely baked to me leh. You are making me craving on chiffon but I have phobia of baking chiffon, I failed twice after my 1st success, really no luck :(

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  3. Such a creative use of ingredients! Sounds like the perfect way to make a cake 'healthier'!

    I have yet to try my first chifffon cake because so many things can go wrong, but I'm inspired by your many successes in this area.

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  4. Beautiful baked chiffon cake! That's a very good recipe book indeed!

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  5. Nags, my husband bought the Ghirardelli chocolates from the States. They are not baking chocolates though, just normal baking chocolates. I have only seen Ghirardelli baking chocolate chips at cold storage but not baking chocolates. I used Ghirardelli cocoa powder for baking, also bought from the States.

    Jess, yes, chiffon cakes is really tricky, I hope you are able to identify the cause and give it a try again. Maybe you can share with me the problems you faced, I can try help you look for the cause.

    NEL, overall the cake is acceptable, but it didn't rise as high :(

    dotz, yes, you are right, so many things can go wrong! Do give it a try, you may get it right the first time.

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  6. What a good idea to add rolled oats ... definitely need to add this to my to-do-list ^_^

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  7. ah, i guessed as much!

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  8. Interesting take on making a granola like chiffon, special! I bet the crunchy topping is a nice contrast to the light chiffon, yummy. Thanks for sharing this!

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  9. This chiffon is so beautifully bake. Very healthy version with rolled oats added.

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  10. Very beautifully baked chiffon cake with touch of healthy ingredients. :)

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  11. Wow , fluffy nutty combo , super delicious ! so light and healthy .

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  12. neyeeloh, this is my 古里古怪 chiffon cake!

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  13. Hi HHB,
    I love mostly all your chiffon cakes, and have tried a few too. This one will definitely go into me 'To Bake' list...thanks for sharing ;)
    Btw, your chiffon still looks awesome though you said it didn't rise as much as you expected it to be :)

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  14. I think this looks very delicious! i'm tempted to try this recipe :)

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  15. healthy n yummy cake...looks divine...perfectly baked..

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  16. Beautiful baked chiffon cake!!! :)

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  17. Ellerinize sağlık. Çok güzel ve leziz olmuş ve çok iştah açıcı görünüyor.

    Saygılar.

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  18. I absolutely love this cake!

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  19. Hi HHB,
    为什么蛋白里加入玉米粉,请看第四页。其实蛋白不是算个的而是重量(g),这就是有人失败的原因。注意到吗?Noriko Ozawo用160度来烘烤,看,面粉只有42(70)克,很少吧。她的戚风食谱用低温烤,上面是光面不开裂的。我传她另一本书的戚风食谱给你,试一试吧! 如果看到成功的妈妈--失败也!别放弃,因为好好吃。《好吃戚风轻松上手》和《超Q 润戚风》及下井佳子的书看过吗? 都有不同之处。

    Penny

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  20. spongy looking chiffon cake, i really like this a lot! thanks for sharing the recipe... ^^

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  21. Noriko Ozawo香蕉巧克力戚风蛋糕--20cm模具

    A 蛋白180g,细糖90g,玉米粉10g,
    B 低筋面粉60g,可可粉30g,糖20g
    C 鲜奶油(38%)400ml, 细糖36g,朗姆酒5ml,香蕉3-4根,甜巧克力37%适量---装饰用,
    做法同上,160C, 45 mins 很高而且上面没有裂开。

    Penny

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  22. This is the first chiffon cake I will be trying - wish me luck!! Also, I dare say mine will look half as pretty as yours!! I have a 10" tin so will have to redo the proportions and make it. I will send u a pic if I am successful:))

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  23. Wor, your chiffon sound healthy with all oats and nuts. I have been added corn flour into my chiffon for all this while, but i still using self raising flour instead of cake cake.

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  24. The cake still looks good, and it got full marks on what counts: the taste. At least it wasn't sunken in the middle. :)

    Is it really possible to completely incorporate whipped egg whites without destroying the fluffiness? Seems like streaky would be the best we could hope for.

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  25. From your pics, I don't see your chiffon cake having shrunk. It looks well-done! This is an interesting chiffon without leavening. Bookmarked!

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  26. Penny, 多谢你的提点!我的戚风蛋糕都不会开裂,因为我的烤箱温度偏低。我只记下食谱前几页,看了却忘了. 上网查看,原来玉米粉能吸收蛋白中的水分而形成稳定的气泡. 谢谢你贴上的食谱,有机会一定试一试!《好吃戚风轻松上手》和《超Q润戚风》还没到手,不过好多站主都贴上这两本书的食谱,我也bookmark好几个了。  

    Lara, I hope you are using a chiffon tube pan? Chiffon cakes are best baked in a tube pan as the centre core allows proper heat circulation, you can use a normal round pan, but the result may not be as good.

    FL Mom, I don't know, I have not been to any baking class, not even demo workshops, so, till now I am not sure when exactly to stop beating the egg whites, and I don't know whether my method of folding is correct? I try to break up the bigger lumps otherwise there will be big holes in the cake. I tend to over-fold as I make sure there is no streaks of egg whites. I find it easier to fold when the egg whites are beaten to soft peaks, I have problem when the recipe calls for stiff peaks :(

    Sonia, maybe you can try using cake flour instead of self raising flour?

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  27. Hhb,

    Your chffon looks very kith and fluffy to me though.... I read on my chffon recipe book it says the egg whites are the one the helps chiffon to rise. So it's not very much of the baking powder that does the rising job. I wonder is it the same thing in the book you have? Cause so far most of the chiffon I baked are none baking powder added. :-)

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  28. Wow! I never would have thought of using granola and chiffon cake in the same sentence let alone the same recipe, but this looks just fantastic!

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  29. HHB,

    I really can't see what is wrong with this chiffon. To me it is a beauty. U have high expectation, is it :)

    So far, I really do not do so much homework as you, before I bake a cake, but I will look into all the comments on that recipe .. looks like I deserve to fail.

    I read from one of the blogger, use balloon whisk to fold in the egg whites. I have not tried before. HAve u heard of this?

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  30. HHB, you are so helpful. I think the cause is due to my folding skill, the more I scare, the more I wanna be extra careful, the higher chance that I will over mix the batter :( probably need you to show me how to fold or go take up baking class :) Thanks again for your kind offering, very appreciated.

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  31. Honey boy, most recipes that do not use baking powder will call for extra egg whites, eg 5 whites to 3 yolks, or 4 whites to 2 yolks. The extra egg whites will give the volume. Whereas I usually follow recipes that call for equal no. of whites to yolks, as I do not know what to do with the extra leftover yolks ;) The chiffon is soft and fluffy, just that it shrank towards the end of the baking time.

    Sherlyn, I have tried using the balloon whisk to fold in the whites. I am not comfortable with it, I still prefer using the spatula so that it can reach all the way to the bottom and side of the mixing bowl. I dropped you an email, not sure whether you have received it?

    Jess, I have problem with folding too! I have not attended any baking class so I am not qualified to teach you ;) I tend to over-fold as I always make sure there is no streaks of egg whites, so much so that the final batter became a little too thin and runny :(
    So, what happened to your chiffon cake, did it sink upon cooling? Sometimes it could be due to the oven temperature.

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  32. I like this cake. It's so different from the chiffon I tried, and a special one. Thanks for sharing...:)

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  33. Hi HHB I am using a tube pan. I seem to have no problem with the egg whites like the others have. In fact all my swiss roll recipes are with whites and yolks separate. I find when you use a silicone spatula of good quality to blend the two it works like a breeze:))

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  34. Lara, I am sure your chiffon cake will turn out great :) I will use my heat proof silicone spatula the next time, thanks for the wonderful tip!

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  35. Your chiffon cake still look very nice and tall to me. Hope to try it out one day. I think this book is not available in the library? Can't seem find it. May I ask why did you use cold egg whites? Isn't it more difficult to whip the egg whites when they are cold?

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  36. Great recipe. I tested it tonight, and I love it. I skipped the chocolate and granola because I am interested in the texture. Wow! this is exactly what I have been searching for.
    And I would like to share with others that it is a general method to fold with large spatula (commercial kitchen size 4")and then use balloon whisk to break the lumps. The motion is almost like a folding. I am also testing Seadragon's Pandan Chiffon Cake tonight.(Thanks to your introduction (in past recipe) to her blog site.) It is still in the oven as I write. You and your fellow bakers are amazing!

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  37. Very special, well done! :)

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  38. SSB, it is not available in the library. I borrowed it from a family member. This book uses methods which is very different from the usual chiffon recipes that we are familiar with. If you look at the instructions above, you will notice that the way the yolk batter is prepared is different (sugar added last). The author suggests using fresh eggs (ie just bought from supermarket/market and not eggs that have been sitting in the fridge for days. I never know that it matters!) to make the chiffon. For very fresh eggs, the egg white has more 粘弹性, so you need to chill it well before beating. This way, the beaten egg whites will not deflate easily.


    Bee with Style, thanks for the tip! This recipe gives a very good texture indeed. I am sure your pandan chiffon will turn out lovely :)

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  39. very interesting, chiffon cake with granola topping..

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  40. I love the toppings added which looks appealing and i believe it added fragrance to the chiffon too.

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  41. Hi HHB,

    Thats a nice looking,nutty,oaty,fluffy chiffon cake that screams: "eat me for breakfast!". I would'nt have thought of adding nuts to chiffon cakes =]

    In the past, I fold my egg whites using the spatula. After trying the balloon whisk, I find that it works very well, even better than the spatula with less deflating. What I will do is combine and use both the balloon whisk and spatula alternately to fold. I will do the folding slowly with the balloon whisk, shaking the batter out of the whisk every now and then. Then use spatula to scrape sides and bottom of bowl. Afterwhich the process is repeated until egg whites are well incoporated.

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  42. Hello HHB! I'm very new to blogging and want to inform you that i've added you into my blog roll.
    Love your blog and those wonderful pictures!!

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  43. Looks great! I love the topping!

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  44. Hi HHB, you are too humble, you are my baking idol leh :).

    I am super sucks at folding, so those cakes that sensitive in folding, I have high failure rate hahaha... I have watched so many times of video clips but that doesnt seem help :(.

    My chiffon was compact instead of soft and fluffy as my posts below :
    http://bakericious.blogspot.com/2010/03/pandan-chiffon-cake-ii.html
    http://bakericious.blogspot.com/2010/03/pandan-chiffon-cake.html

    Another one which I didn't post, the texture seem quite alright but there was a big big hole in the cake that made the cake collapse to one side and cake shrink a bit too.

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  45. I'm the same with no baking lessons & no technique so I don't know about how to fold properly either. According to Bakertan at (19/8/10 10:51 PM) though, it can be done so maybe that technique is the one. I still think it's great how you're willing to experiment and then share the results with everyone. :)

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  46. Bakertan, I have also tried using both balloon whisk and spatula too. But I wasn't confident enough to do the folding with the balloon whisk as the whites got stuck in the whisk. I got to knock if off every now and then, and me being clumsy and very 'chor lor' could have deflated the whites even more. I guess the only way for me it to keep practising.

    lena, thanks for adding me in your blog roll, I am so honored :):)

    Jess, I watched videos too, but doesn't help because when it comes to actual doing it, it is another thing. Your banana chiffon cake turn out very good wah? I think you are already on the right path.

    FL Mom, for people like us who have not attended baking classes, our learning curve is much longer. We could only gain experience thru lots of practice and learn from failed attempts. I hope by sharing my experience, those who are interested in baking would able to avoid any pitfalls and minimise any kitchen mishaps. :)

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  47. your cake looks great! i love your pictures, too by the way :)
    -Tawny@ http://theyearofthecookie.blogspot.com/

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  48. Your chiffon cake looks perfect to me. Really love this version, can't wait to try it. Thank you!

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  49. Beautiful chiffon. I dare say it's better than the one from the book.
    I think I have that book in Chinese. One of my favourite chiffon from the book is the Sesame and Rucola chiffon. A very unique combination.

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  50. This is an eye opener! Never thought of using granola as chiffon topping! I'd just eat granola plain or with milk or yogurt. @@

    I also suck at folding. 我們跌到一次,但會爬起來再繼續往前進!加油!

    但是我每天都在跌,跌到滿身是瘀青了。。。唉!這大頭蝦仍是永遠學不會的。哈哈哈!

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  51. banana chiffon is the only one that success, another pandan chiffon after tat failed again :p, texture soft and quite fluffy but with giant hole in the cake, almost 1/3 of the cake that almost collapse the cake. Anyway I will try again, got hold the '戚风蛋糕秘法传授'liao, will study to get some tips. Thanks for the helps :). BTW, I ve the soft copy of this book, let me know if you are interested to have it.

    Have a nice wkend!

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  52. Nice idea to use granola for chiffon cake...I made it few times and I really don't remember if I used baking powder or not...I will check it out...
    Let us know if you solve the problems you had.

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  53. I've never ever thought of incorporating granola into a chiffon cake! This is great! All my favourites combined into one. You always wow me with your bakes. :)

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  54. HHB, is this the first time you bake from this book? Corn flour helps to dry up the moisture in the egg white, thus stabilizing it. I couldn't tell that your chiffon cake shrank. It still looks very beautiful.

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  55. Shirley, yes, this is the first recipe I have attempted from this book. Will try another recipe, hope it will turn out well.

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  56. Hi, I really wanted to say "THANK YOU" to you, this is 1st time I follow your instruction, my chiffon cake turn out so soft and fluffy, also because of the topping make me try this recipe, we love granola. I love to bake but never can bake a sponge cake, I am an super sucks at folding, I stop baking those cakes that sensitive in folding, 1st time I bake my chiffon cake was few year ago, turn out wet and heavy. Next day (Sunday) I try your recipe of Leomon Chiffon cake turn out perfect, my family love it. Do you have Pandon Chiffon cake recipe? Can share? Once again Thank you very much....
    Mrs Ow Yong

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  57. hi. i am a student. need a recipe for home econ. project. i saw you peach tart recipe. may i know i long you took to make it?
    Student

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  58. Hi Mrs Ow Yong, I don't really have a good pandan chiffon recipe, will post it if I find one :)

    Hi student, the peach tart is done in stages, there is chilling time and cooling time involved. So it probably takes 2~3 hrs in total.

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  59. ok thank you, but i don't think i have that long. sorry to bother you again. do you have any recipe for baking that is easy for student to bake? around 14 years old one? about 1 hour to complete everything.

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  60. 我是烘培新手,sponge cake 我常做的不好,但我尝试了好多次chiffon cake ,就失败了一次,下来每一次都没让我失望,都没大问题。我都不放发粉或小苏打。虽然不是发的很高很高,但也有4-5 inc的高度。但在打蛋白时我加了Cream of tartar,下次我会学你用corn flour 来取代。我通常先打蛋白,再打蛋黄,在把其他的佐料加在面粉里轻轻(这一步我会加一粒全蛋,通常油份太少,很难拌允)再来就蛋黄加进面粉里拌匀,最后就用Ballon Whisk or Egg whisk 把蛋黄慢慢用滚动方式拌进蛋白里。不好意思,也许我的步骤怪了点但每次都没失望哦。

    Alvina , Sg.

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  61. Alvina, 多谢你的分享和提点 :) 我先蛋黄再来打蛋白, 怕蛋白会消泡,反而sponge cake 的全蛋打法我没问题 :)

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  62. I love the idea of combining granola and a cake! Can't think of a more brilliant way to sneak cake in for breakfast! :)

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  63. 要是先打蛋黄的话,我就得洗了再抹得非常干净和干。我先打蛋白是因为懒惰清理,打了蛋白再transfered到另一个碗待用,就不用洗直接打蛋黄。HHB 你有做过Kuah Lapis 吗?我前天做了一个味道是不错,就是难看很不理想~~

    Alvina .

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  64. Alvina, 我和你一样懒得清理, 不过我有两个碗, 一个打蛋白, 一个打蛋黄 :) 我不做Kuah Lapis, 因为我的烤箱温度难控制, 开开关关温度会一直下降, 升不上来. 小时到是有和妈妈一起做过. 

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  65. like your !chiffon cake looks very jummy.

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