Friday 15 March 2013

cranberry orange chiffon cake

I have a leftover egg white from making a batch of cookies, what better way than to save it for a chiffon cake!

I am back to making an orange cointreau chiffon cake using the same recipe as these chiffon cupcakes. The only difference is, I added in some dried cranberries as I love it in my bakes, be it cookies, bread or cakes.

To prevent the dried cranberries from sinking to the bottom of the pan, I poured a small amount of the finished batter into pan, just enough to fill the base of the pan. Then I mixed in the dried cranberries with the rest of the batter before pouring everything into the pan. The cake was baked to a nice golden brown, and upon unmolding, I knew this extra effort did help. The dried cranberries did not sink to the bottom (now the top of the cake).

This cake is very light and has a very refreshing taste. The orange flavour is distinct yet subtle while the tangy-sweet dried cranberries gives a perfect balance to the sweet crumb. This recipe is definitely a keeper, I will certainly be making it again and again!

Cranberry Orange Chiffon Cake

(for 17cm tube pan)

3 egg yolks
25g caster sugar
35ml vegetable oil
60ml orange juice
1 teaspoon Cointreau (I used 2 teaspoons)
zest from 1 orange
80g cake flour

4 egg whites
45g caster sugar

40g dried cranberries
some cake flour for dusting

  1. Chop dried cranberries into smaller pieces. Coat with cake flour and sieve to remove excess flour. Set aside.
  2. Place egg yolks in a mixing bowl. With a manual hand whisk, whisk the yolks a little. Add in sugar and whisk to combine.
  3. Add in vegetable oil gradually, whisk to combine. Add orange juice, cointreau and orange zest, whisk to combine. Sieve over the flour and whisk till the flour is fully incorporated. Do not over mix. Set aside.
  4. In a clean, dry mixing bowl, beat egg whites with a handheld electric mixer on low speed until mixture becomes frothy and foamy. Add half of the sugar amount and turn to high speed and beat the mixture. Continue to add in the remaining sugar and beat until the egg whites reaches the soft peak stage.The soft peak stage is reached when the peaks of the whites curl over and droop slightly. 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.)
  5. Add the beaten egg whites into the egg yolk batter in 3 separate additions, each time folding gently with a spatula until just blended. 
  6. To prevent the dried cranberries from sinking to the bottom of the pan, first pour a small portion of batter into a 17cm tube pan (do not grease the pan), just enough batter to fill the base of the pan. 
  7. Add the prepared dried cranberries into the remaining batter in the mixing bowl. Fold with a spatula until just blended. Do not over mix. Pour batter into the pan. Tap the pan lightly on a table top to get rid of any trapped air bubbles in the batter.
  8. Bake in pre-heated oven at 180 degC for 30 mins, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean, when lightly pressed the cake will spring back. 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: adapted from 好吃戚风蛋糕轻松上手, 福田淳子


Unknown said...

Beautiful cake, looks gorgeous

Unknown said...

That looks so good :). Cranberry and orange go so well together :).

Rachael xx.

Sarah @ Scissors and a Whisk said...

Um my stomach growled and my mouth drooled.

Yummy Bakes said...

Wow beautiful chiffon. I did your lemon chiffon last week end but I think along the way either beating of egg whites or folding part not done well so there were a lot of 'holes' in the cake. Despite that, it was still a soft and nice cake.

sherlyn said...

Beautiful chiffon indeed. Since the last 3 tries, I have not made any .. just finding it very tedious. Wonder if I have time this march holiday. I am thinking of making cream puff which will also use yolk only for the custard and will have whites left .. how long you think I can freeze the whites? :)

createwithmom said...

cake looks wonderful lovely presentation

PH said...

Beautifully baked as usual!

Happy Homebaker said...

Yummy Bakes, the holes are due to the lumps of egg whites...bake more chiffon cakes and I am sure u will get the hang of it soon ;)

Sherlyn, practise makes perfect, dont give up! I kept my egg whites for about 2 to 3 weeks in the freezer. Think you can keep it in the freezer for a few months.

Thanks Phong Hong!

Priya, Rachael, createwithmon, thanks for your kind comments!

Anonymous said...

Hi, I like orange flavor cake. May I know what is Cointreau? Is it a kind of liquor? How does it help in baking? Where can I get it? - Sue Chua

Anonymous said...

Very very nice blog! I am a novice baker with a lot of dietary restrictions but always looking for new and exciting cooking and baking projects. I was wondering if you could please explain to me the essential difference between a chiffon cake, bundt cake, sponge cake and sheet cake. Thank you

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Sue Chua, you can read about Cointreau here:
or visit its website. basically it is a kind of orange flavoured liquor. I got it when I was overseas. Are you a local? You can get it cheaper at the airport duty free shop. I bought the smallest bottle (350ml) only using it for baking.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, you can read about the different types of cakes here:

Kimmy said...

Hi HHB, nice chiffon cake esp. with the Cointreau. Haven't been baking chiffon cos' was so addicted to my Cottony cakes. Must get back to baking chiffon cake soon.

Anonymous said...

HHB, thanks for your kind response. I'm local and I'll get my hubby to get a small bottle for me in his next business trip. - Sue Chua

Happy Homebaker said...

Kimmy, looking forward to your chiffon post!

Sue Chua, you might also want to ask him to get you a bottle of Myer's Dark Rum ;) I got my husband to get it for me recently, finally I will be able to bake something with rum but it comes in 1 ltr bottle!

Yummy Bakes said...

haha thanks. This is my lemon chiffon cake.

Jasmine Dk Shepard said...

That's a beautiful cake. I've been baking alot of chiffon cakes lately too, mostly strawberry. Never though about cranberry orange though. I'll have to try it.

Janine said...

your chiffon cakes are always unmoulded so beautifully!

Anonymous said...

how long do you usually beat your egg white to soft peak? the last time i tried to make chiffon cake, i took 45 mins to beat it using my Philips hand held electric mixer.
Do you think its too long?

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, it takes only about 5 mins. and another 1 to 2 mins to reach the stiff peak stage. I think you would have over beat the whites after 10 min.

Anonymous said...

Hi HHB, may I know where did you purchase that white elegant plate?(The one u place the chiffon on it)=)

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, I got it from King & King Wong.

Fi Fi said...

I baked this today and was happy with the taste as it was my first time baking a Chiffon cake. I didn't use any Cointreau as I hv none; the cake was soft though not as fluffy.

I want to confirm when you meant 'just blend' in step 5; do you mean the "whites" has to be fully incorporated into the orange mixture so that there's no trace of whites? I realized my mixture deflated as I was folding the mixture to a full orange colour.

Secondly, my final cake has crumbs stick to the pan; am I supposed to use parchment paper on the side? And the cranberries sank to the bottom...

Lastly, thanks to your tips in beating the whites, I finally managed to get a double mixture and soft peak this time... :P

I will certainly tried again next week!

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, yes, blend until the whites are fully incorporated into the batter, no traces of whites, otherwise the lumps of whites will become large air holes in the finished cake.

for baking chiffon cakes, do not line or grease your pan. do not use parchment paper. you are using those non-stick pan, which actually affects the result. the batter will not be able to rise as high compared to a proper chiffon pan, which has a taller (greater depth).
pls refer to this post on how I unmold the chiffon cake, there will be crumbs sticking on the pan:

to prevent the cranberries from sinking, cut them into very small pieces, and dust/coat with flour before adding. you can also add the cranberries after you have filled the pan with about 1/3 of the batter, sprinkle some on top, then fill the batter with some more batter, and sprinkle the leftovers again, then top with the leftover batter. this way, it may help the cranberries from sinking too.

Serene Chua said...

Hi HHB, I'm actually a beginner. If I have a 22cm chiffon pan, how should I increase the ingredient portion. Thks p!

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Serene, I am not able to advise how to increase the portion for 22cm pan since I have not tried it myself. as chiffon cake can be quite tricky especially for first timer, I would recommend that you look for recipes that are meant for 22cm pan.