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Thursday, 10 May 2012

Strawberry Cake | Kitchen Blooper No. 1

I don't even know why I'm sharing this recipe. It was my first failed cake. But once in a while, its okay to show off your flopped attempts too. :-) I did figure out why the cake tanked. So this is not a completely useless post either. :-)
I have an acquired taste for strawberries. It wasn't my favorite fruit in the world. But I've gradually started enjoying the fruit in foods other than ice cream too. I had a bunch of strawberries at home, so I decided to bake. (I baked this way back in December! Before I decided to take a break :-D) Got the recipe here, and started baking.
[Recipe Source: Tamalpaku]
Ingredients
Amount
Details, if any
All purpose flour
1 cup
200 grams. You can use wheat flour
Milk
1 and 1/4 cup
250 ml
Powdered Sugar
3/4 cup
150 grams
Milk Powder*
1/2 cup
100 grams
Butter
6 tablespoons
Around 90 grams, *at room temperature*
Baking Powder
1 teaspoon
-
Baking Soda
1 teaspoon
-
Vanilla Extract
1 teaspoon
You could use strawberry extract if you have
Strawberries
1 cup
Chopped
Lemon Juice
A few drops
For the strawberries
Sugar
1-2 teaspoons
For the strawberries
STEPS
Picture
1. Pre-heat oven to 160C/325F

2. Chop strawberries, add lemon juice & sugar & mix well. Keep aside until batter is ready. (or about half hour. This helps to bring out the flavor of strawberries)
3. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and keep aside
4. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter & vanilla extract with a wire whisk/hand blender for around 3 minutes
5. Add the sugar & milk powder
6. Beat until it is soft
7. Add half the flour & half the milk
8. Mix well until smooth.
9. Repeat the same with other half of milk & flour. Beat well to form a smooth batter.
10. Add the strawberries along with its juices
11. Mix well
12. Line cake tin with butter paper and pour the batter in
14. Bake at 160C/325F for 25-30 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean
15. Slice & Serve

Notes:
* I cut each strawberry into 4 slits vertically & 1 slit horizontally >  around 8 small chunks. Feel free to cut them into any size you like. But do note that when you have bigger chunks, there's a big gap in the cakes.
* Its important for butter to be at room temperature to cream it well while beating with sugar.
* REGARDING MILK POWDER – I also tried a batch excluding the milk powder. Doesn’t taste the same, but the cake works without it too. Just reduce the milk by about 50 ml
* You can also use blackberries, blueberries, grapes, raspberries etc.
* Let the cake cool completely & frost it with any frosting of your choice. (strawberry butter-cream goes well with this cake)
Verdict:
The cake was soft, moist and delicious! And if you love strawberries, you'll definitely enjoy these! I would however, refrain from adding the lemon juice next time. Strawberries are tarty by themselves. I think the addition of lemon juice made it a bit more sour. I didn't go for any frosting. Just dusted them with a little icing sugar. However, it did leave a black thick crust, and it was so soft that it crumbled when I cut. And here's why I think the cake was a flop -

2 main reasons why the cake flopped:
- Oven temperature - My new convection oven seems to bake the cake in 15 minutes. But the insides still remain uncooked. Prolonged baking ensures that the cake is done, but leaves an unpleasant burnt crisp layer on the outside.
Solution: Cover the cake tin with aluminum foil or parchment paper ; lower the temperature by 10 to 20 degrees than the recipe and check on the cake 5 minutes before the recipe time. I've successfully baked 2-3 cakes after this one, covering the top with parchment. They baked perfectly. So, its all about your oven temp.

- No resting time - My mum had a kid over to teach some Mathematics. She was about to leave just when I took the cake out of the oven. And they rushed the cake! :-/ It didn't even rest for a minute before un-moulding. I wouldn't blame the cake for disintegrating.
Solution: Always let the cake rest for at least 5-10 minutes before cutting.

The taste wasn't compromised though. Plus, I did learn a valuable lesson from the flopped cake! :-D

90 comments:

  1. Nice tasty cake !! looks wonderful !!

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    ReplyDelete
  2. I like this post for multiple reasons.
    Not because it flopped for you (I have also proudly shared my dosa disaster :D), but because you blogged to share why failures could happen and how to correct them.
    I believe that anyone can cook, post recipes and click pictures, but understanding basics, explaining techniques, and giving valuable advice - not everyone does.

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  3. Failure is the stepping stone to success !

    ReplyDelete
  4. Kavi, Good luck with your exams ya, I wish you clear them in flying colors. The cake is a different story. Had cone cup cake disasters and sometimes we cannot understand how others got it right when we did not. Have tried many things like this and its an experience.

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  5. Wow Looks great!
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  6. good post...u helped us to bake a good cake by telling about ur failure and the reason for it...thanks for sharing lovely recipe...we will try this out for sure..

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  7. Looks yummy KavI..... And thanks for sharing the tips as well.... Actually even I ve faced problems when I used fresh fruits in cake ....which left the cake soggy n the center of cake always undone..... Then someone told me that when fresh fruits are used its better to squeeze out its juice n then add and the juice can be used with the batter or use ur imagination..... Well I haven't tried tat yet..... But hope it helps u next time....

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  8. Looks yummy KavI..... And thanks for sharing the tips as well.... Actually even I ve faced problems when I used fresh fruits in cake ....which left the cake soggy n the center of cake always undone..... Then someone told me that when fresh fruits are used its better to squeeze out its juice n then add and the juice can be used with the batter or use ur imagination..... Well I haven't tried tat yet..... But hope it helps u next time....

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  9. Looks yummy KavI..... And thanks for sharing the tips as well.... Actually even I ve faced problems when I used fresh fruits in cake ....which left the cake soggy n the center of cake always undone..... Then someone told me that when fresh fruits are used its better to squeeze out its juice n then add and the juice can be used with the batter or use ur imagination..... Well I haven't tried tat yet..... But hope it helps u next time....

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  10. Ha ha! don't worry it happens :D

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  11. Though my cake came out very well in softness and texture, my family members thought that it tasted too milky(they dislike milk). Can I replace either milk or milk powder with any other ingredient that would reduce the milkiness of the cake?

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