May 12, 2010

Lego Layer Cake (Genoise Sponge)

It was my cousin Alex's birthday last month, and he turned 7.  (Wah, where did the time go?)
He's a big fan of Lego, good on him, so Mum and I made him a 3 brick pile of Lego layer cakes.  The cake layers were made out of Genoise sponge cake; in between the layers went strawberries and whipped cream in one (see above), buttercream in another and ganache in the last one.


I also reached a milestone in my baking life - I got my first double yolk, and my second too!  2 double yolks in the same box.  I must admit it was rather freaky to see two blobs of yellow come out of one egg shell.  *Shudder*


Recipe Source: The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Pastry Arts
Genoise Sponge
Ingredients
300g flour
Pinch baking soda
12 large eggs, at room temperature
300g sugar
60g unsalted butter




Method
1. Preheat oven to 177 degrees Celsius.
Prepare an 18 by 26 inch sheet pan, or multiple sheet pans/cake tins of equivalent size, by lining with baking paper.  Alternatively, you can butter the pan and sprinkle flour onto the butter.
Sift the flour and baking soda into a bowl together, set aside.


2. Fill a saucepan with water, low enough to allow a heat-proof bowl to fit snugly into it without touching the water.  Bring the water to a boil, then remove from heat.




3. Combine eggs with sugar in the heat proof bowl using a whisk, and place the bowl onto the saucepan.  This heats the eggs and sugar using steam from the hot water.
Whisk over the heat for about 10 minutes, or until the mixture reads 43 degrees C on a candy thermometer.  Don't allow the temperature to exceed 49 degrees C or the cake will be dry and tough!




4. Remove the bowl from heat and transfer to an electric mixer with whisk attachment.  Beat vigorously for about another 10 minutes, or until them mixture has tripled in volume and forms a ribbon when lifted from the bowl.
When I say tripled in volume, I mean it.  It does.  Make sure you have a big enough bowl.



While it's doing its thing, melt your butter.



5. Begin folding the flour mixture into the egg mixture in several additions, using a rubber spatula. Fold in each addition while the batter is still streaky from the previous one.
When all the flour has been incorporated, and the batter remains streaky, fold in the melted butter.


6. Add flavouring and/or colouring.  I used cocoa for one bit, vanilla for another and pink colouring for the last.




7. Pour batter into prepared pan, make sure it's an even layer.  Bash the pan on the table a couple of times to get rid of surface bubbles.


8. Bake the cake for about 25 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the centre springs back when gently poked.


9. Once removed from oven, immediately invert the cake onto a wire rack to cool completely.  If it's left to sit in the pan, the cake will become soggy.



Looks good!


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We whipped up some sugar syrup (1 part water, 1 part sugar) to brush the cake layers with, to moisten and sweeten them a bit.  Shown in the following pictures is Mum assembling the pink genoise with strawberries and whipped cream filling.


Spread with whipped cream...


Place sliced strawberries on top...



More cream...


Voila, place the top layer on and six little circles; there you have an un-iced block of Lego!


We iced the circles individually, by sticking them on a toothpick and spreading on icing using a knife.



Pile 'em up...



Happy birthday, Alex!



Let the delicious carnage ensue.