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Friday, April 6, 2012

Chocolate Raspberry Cake - Rasps Whole Cakes #3

  This was the first birthday cake that I made for ME. My birthday was months ago, more than half year ago... as you all know, I post very slowly.

Personally I felt awkward making a cake for myself. But it's because my kids now understand that birthdays are something special for a person, then I can have my own cake and blow it too. I can't wait for the day when my kids will bake me my cake because no one will buy me one ... get it? LOL.

Remember I said my husband once helped me buy 1 punnet of raspberries, and this is the cake that used up that punnet. It was not that fresh anymore when I made this, so I was left with some pathetic ones. Trying very hard to remove the bad parts and get at least 8 whole rasps for deco. Talk about him buying and leaving it at home for a few hours unreferigerated (but with air cond running) in Subang before driving back to KK. That period of time, there was none in Ipoh, suddenly no stock anywhere. So, I asked him to get for me when he went to KL for a business trip.

My first time making a lacquer glaze. Ooooo... I tell you, my heart went bee bee bop bop while I was pouring, hands were almost shaking..... stresss!!!!!! It was because my glaze was 1C too high. I couldn't wait any longer so I just proceeded at 27C and I tell you, I really shouldn't have. The glaze won't stick well and after a few rounds of pouring and catching, it finally went down to 26C and it looked thick and much better.

I gave myself a huge pat on the back when it was finally fully covered. Phew!

Chocolate Raspberry Cake
Idea derived from The Baker's Dozen Cookbook
pg 94, with personal adaptations

9-inch Soft chocolate genoise
Light Ganache
1 punnet raspberries
Lacquer Glaze (26C, freshly made. 29C if made ahead and reheated)

1. Slice genoise into 2 layers. Place 1 piece onto a cake board that is of equal size with the cake.
2. Spread 1/3 of the light ganache onto the cake. Break some raspberries and arrange them onto the cake.
3. Spread 1/3 of the light ganache onto the 2nd piece of cake, and lay the frosted side down onto the first layer.
4. Spread balance of light ganache all over cake, making sure everything is even and smooth. Freeze the cake for 15 minutes. (best will be to chill the cake for 2 hours)
5. Prepare a wire rack.  Place a catchment tray underneath the rack, slightly bigger than the cake will do. Turn on the aircond, a warm room will not be suitable.
6. Remove cake from freezer and place it on the rack with tray underneath.
7. Gently pour room temperature lacquer glaze over cake starting from the center and then on the rim, making sure every bit of cake is covered. Let the glaze drip. Repeat if needed.
8. Transfer cake to a bigger cake board or serving platter. Top with whole raspberries.Chill cake for another 3-5 hours before serving.

Soft Chocolate Genoise
Recipe source: The Baker's Dozen Cookbook
page 63

60gm clarified butter (Homemade version refer here. 90gm butter will yield around 60gm clarified)
60gm plain flour
38gm cocoa powder
5 Grade A eggs (65gm with shells each, if using grade C, use 6 eggs)
200gm sugar (you will need this amount to offset the bitterness of the cocoa)
1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Preheat the oven at 160(fan)/180C (My oven preheats in 6 minutes, so I do this only when it’s time to beat the eggs, so when to preheat, it’s up to u).
2. Prepare a 9 inch round pan and line the base.
3. Sift cocoa powder and flour together twice. Set aside.
4. Heat a pan of water. Break eggs into your mixer bowl and put in sugar. Turn the heat off and put the mixer bowl into the pan of hot water. Stirring it all the time so that it warms up without cooking. Remove bowl from pot when it’s warm. Beat eggs on high speed until ribbon stage (5 mins speed 8 on KA, 10mins with hand mixer)
5. Meanwhile, Turn up the heat again(just to reboil the water, then turn to the lowest heat) and place the clarified butter in the pan to keep hot (not warm). Put vanilla extract into the butter.
6. When eggs are done beating, pour half the sifted flour into the eggs and fold. Pour the balance of flour and fold again (as long as all the flour is folded, but streaks of egg can still be seen, it’s ok)
7. Drop approximately 1 cup of the batter into the butter and stir (not fold) until very well incorporated. Pour this into the batter.
8. Fold batter until incorporated and pour into prepared pan.
9. Bake for 30 minutes or until done. (Cake will rise 30-40% while baking and deflate later)
10. Remove from oven, let cake cool for 1 minute on wire rack. Loosen the crust from the pan, to prevent the cake from cracking. Loosen the sides after 3 minutes for even shrinkage and let cake cool off completely before removing from pan.

Light Ganache
Source: The Baker's Dozen Cookbook
pg 331

250ml whipping cream
184gm dark chocolate

*Prepare this 6 hours  beforehand.(or up to 4 days earlier)

1. Break chocolate into smaller pieces and put into a  bowl.
2. Heat cream untill the periphery begins to bubble. Turn off the heat.
3. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Let it stand for about 5 minutes. With a spatula, gently stir the chocolate to make sure it is completely melted.
4. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 6 hours until thick and cold.

5. Whip the cold ganache until it turns to the colour Milo, don't overwhip.Use immediately ************************************************
Lacquer Glaze
Source: Rose's Heavenly Cakes

39gm cold water
1-1/8 tsp gelatin

100gm sugar
59gm water
21gm corn syrup (I used golden syrup)
50gm alkalized cocoa powder
58gm heavy cream

1. Place 39gm water in a bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over. Let it sit for minimum 5 minutes.
2. In a saucepan, heat 59gm water with sugar until it melts and water is hot. Turn off the heat and stir in the corn syrup. Then stir in the cocoa powder until smooth. Stir in the cream.
3. Return the saucepan to medium heat, stirring constantly and let it heat until you can see bubble on the periphery.  Remove from heat and strain. Stir in the softened gelatin (from step 1) until everything is dissolved and smooth. Strain everything again into a glass measuring cup (metal will give the lacquer a funny taste later)
4. Allow the lacquer to cool down for a few minutes, stirring gently so that you do not incorporate air into it. Glaze coats best fresh at 26C, but can be made days ahead and reheated to 29C for best performance.

The genoise was very soft and delicious. Seems like a lot of sugar, but because the cocoa powder taste was also strong, the sweetness was just right. It also felt moist due to the high ratio of eggs to flour. It might seem dense visually, but it's definitely not so... it's soft and moist, almost souffle like.

And when your girl gives you this expression.... it's priceless
chocolate and berries, her favourite.

Added 7 April 2012
If you want to see how Rose glazes her cake with her Lacquer Glaze, see this video

I am submitting this post to
Bake Fest by Vardhini hosted by Sumee


  1. Happy belated really look very yummy...i also bake my own birthday cake ....hahaha...

  2. look like your princess birthday....wahahah...they are so happy...

  3. hi siss..ur ganache very perfect..mesti cuba..

  4. i totally get the gists.. I have been making my own birthday for years (except 2011, cause was in seoul) cause no one will go thru the trouble of getting me some awesome blossom birthday cake from non-chain bakeries..
    havent tot of mine this year yet.. lol..

  5. HAppy belated bday wendy!that is a very beautiful cake!n this is my 1st time knowing abt lacquer..

  6. Happy Belated Birthday Wendy.....I don't hv cakes for my birthday...sobs, sobs...

  7. Happy Belated Birthday to you Wendy..My birthday was over and i did not make a cake for myself this time..A very tempting DIY the cake stand? look nice wor, flower vase from Ikea right, hehehe..

  8. Do you think it is possible if i sub clarified butter with melted butter?..this cake looks divine!

  9. Wa... half a year now only you post it up ! Happy Belated Birthday to you :) It is a beautiful cake and I guess a lot of work...full of love eh :)))

  10. Happy way-belated birthday, Wendy.

    You baked yourself a cake :D Very beautiful, yummy and sophisticated one; the proof is your lil darling showing thumbs up!!

  11. Hody,
    Yaya... urs is just over right?

    Pei San,
    ooo.. they are happy no matter whose birthday is it, as long as got candles and cake

    Juicy Cafe,
    It's lacquer, not ganache.

    Swee San,
    I don't even mind a chain store cake, but that person won't bother one la.

    eency weency,
    Oh, Rose Levy Beranbaum loves using lacquer and it's very shiny

    What's ur wife's number, gimme, LOL

    U very pandai ler, yayaya, Ikea vase ;)

    Clarified butter makes genoise taste much better.
    If you really want to make a good genoise, do the the extra step.

    Biasala, LOL. If it's not because of AB, it won't be this soon, also, LOL.

    Thanks! My girls nowadays very camera smart oredi..but this day, her thumbs was up and down, up and down.. excitedly happy.

  12. Look who was happier than the birthday girl? Wendy, in my impression, your 2 daughters were born in different years right? They look like a pair of twin sisters! My hubby was standing behind me when I was looking on your birthday cake photos & he asked whether your daughters are twin. The cake looks beautiful & happy belated birthday!

  13. Jessie,
    16 months apart.
    Oh yes, now, the reason my husband and I celebrate our own birthdays are for the kids, they love birthdays and cakes. But to me, I feel its good to teach them this, doing special things for people you love.

  14. wow... that is one lovely cake! Happy Belated Birthday Wendy...

    I can tell how delicious that cake is by the look at your children's faces... :0)

  15. If it still count, happy belated birthday!! Ai ya, I super lazy to bake myself a nice cake la. But I love your cake can never go wrong with chocolate and raspberry! I wish we are neighbors, I can bake for u on your birthday and you bake for me on mine, how's that sound?? Nice right? Lol!

  16. awww!! Your kids are super cute!! I love the last picture where she gave a thumbs up! haha.. What a beautiful cake! Frosting is absolutely flawless!

  17. not yet...coming soon ....but i get my present early...

  18. so beautiful, so at least i got no more excuse to read up the Baker's Dozen now,as i'm rather lazy to convert the measurement fr cups.

  19. This cake looks so inviting! Both your daughters are so sweet & cute! :)

  20. oh it ;)

  21. Happy Belated Birthday Wendy. My dad laughed and said "You bake for everyone's birthday and when it's your own birthday I think you have to bake for your ownself because none of us know how to" he chuckled.... It's so nice to reward ourself with a homemade cake... and yours with the expensive raspberry and chocolate ...yumm!!

  22. Oh wendy, your cake looks delicious.. *wanna share? :D * Happy Easter,dear..

  23. Happy Belated Birthday ! Your girls are so cute , seemed very excited abt your cake ;) I also made myself a birthday cake this year too. Partly cos I wanted to experiment some cake designs. Ur cake really love lovely ;D

  24. all look so photogenic, including the cake! if you say your hand was shaking like crazy , i cant imagine mine, you can see how my hand was shaking when i piped the macarons, if do this, my hands will be shaking like it's going to drop off!the glaze looks really shining, can even see some reflection on it.

  25. lovely lovely cake! I absolutely adore the gloss on the ganache glaze...

  26. Looking at the photos itself already makes me drooling. The chocolate says it all; I loves to eat chocolate so I bet this would be my favourite too. Your cake so very well perfectly done.

  27. Your girls' facial expression say it all, how delicious and tasty this cake is! :)

  28. Food Dream,
    They'd eat any choc cake!

    Oh not only so, I cook one dish per day, you cook one dish, then we split and share! How's that?

    Sweet Samsations,
    oooo.... it was pretty tense.... but i'm happy with the final result

    Hahaha.... but then, by then the Ferrero all melt oredi lor.

    Oh yes, that's the part I hate the most.
    I tried out this cake because it had a picture, LOL.

    Hope you like this


    Me too!

  29. Joelyn,
    the chocolate is just cheapo Beryls, good and affordable.
    I am really looking forward to the day when my girls can bake...

    Mom's the little one,
    Long time gone into our tummies oredi, unless u can dig them out

    The Ombre cake? That was absolutely stunning!

    My heart was crazy but my hand still can control, almost shaking only. But with very deep concentration and w/o the kids around, all napping! LOL. Oh yes, the lacquer's crazily beautiful, of which I die die wanted to use Rose's lacquer instead of the usual ganache.

    travelling foodies,
    Lacquer la wei.

    Weirdly choc has never been my fav, LOL.
    But it's a fav of many

    Most kids will love chocolate, my kids are not any different. I rarely make chocolate cakes, that's why they are so excited about it, LOL.

  30. you mean that;s the same one that Rose used in the cake on the book cover?

  31. wow you made your own birthday cake?? ok actually so did I, that was all the way back in october last year, but it was nothing amazing liek this. just a normal apple muffin-like cake.

  32. lena,
    she used it in a few cakes, like the designer baby grand, la bomba and the cover cake too.
    She stunned me with its beauty, so I die die must try at least once.

    Shu Han,
    I remember that one...
    I like to challenge myself and try new things all the time, and birthdays are good excuses to do whole cakes that I may never do again, probably, LOL.

  33. Belated Happy Birthday! what you did was just priceless - - - your kids are one lucky bunch to have you :)

  34. Happy Belated Birthday Wendy. Your cake looks superb. Thumbs up to you - AGAIN!

  35. Your cake is beautiful! I made my own birthday cake too last year, only it wasn't a cake, it was a chocolate walnut tart because I wanted to eat that! My son thought it was funny baking my own birthday cake! It is a bit late, but Happy Belated Birthday anyway! Love your shiny glaze!

  36. Happy Belated Birthday! No one buys or bakes me a birthday cake I end up baking my own. I wish I could have this same exact chocolate raspberry cake on my birthday...but for now, I can only dream on since I can't create something as beautiful! I really envy your girls ;) I am sure in time to come, they will bake you a gorgeous birthday cake!

  37. Your birthday cake is beautiful so are the photos of you and your two princesses! I like the photo of your girl with her thumb up!! hehehe, so cute!! PRICELESS! really PRICELESS!

  38. Glaze looks sparkling and heavenly!!!! Aahhhhh.. LOved your Ganache recipe.. thnx again for linking up..

  39. Thank you for the recipe of the lacquer glaze and the video, your blog is an inspiration, I will post your link in my favorite blogs list on my blog.

  40. Hi Wendy,

    Will be making this cake tonite, just would like to check with you...regarding the light ganache , do we need to whip it when cold ?
    Thanks a lot !!

  41. wvfy,
    Any ganache must be whipped while cold. must.

  42. I LOVE IT!!! especially the glittering ganache glaze!
    Raspberries are quite expensive... How many grams of them did you buy?

  43. Carine,
    Less than 200gm I think, the usual Driscolli punnet sold here.
    Most of them turned mouldy la.

  44. Can I substitute corn syrup in this recipe with the syrup that we used to make traditional moon cake??

    What is the difference between alkalized cocoa powder and ordinary cocoa powder???

  45. Judy,
    Most of the cocoa powder in our region is alkalized, the more alkalized it is, the darker it will be, and the richer it will taste.
    I used Van Houten and just don't use Hershey's Natural Cocoa, but you can use Hershey's Dark Cocoa powder.
    Yes, you can use golden syrup, I used that too, see the words in ( )

  46. Hi Wendy,

    How long did you whip your cold ganache??yours turn to the color milo but my can't.......still dark color......

  47. Hi Wendy, as this is my lst time using ganache, I'm abit confused as some ganache recipe doesn't required to be chilled n whipped while some does. Is there a difference? TIA


  48. BB,
    If you are using the ganache as a fluffy filling, you need to chill and whip.
    If you are using the ganache as a topping, you use it when it's warm and runny.
    This recipe is on the complicated side, make sure you have the exact temperature for the lacquer, if not, it will be hard to handle.


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