May 24, 2011

Cold Cubes

Cold cubes

For Lydia! Thank you for emailing me, glad you like this cake! I have made this cake so many times, I don‘t even look for the recipe any more. It is simple, delicious, juicy, classic, and a real good dessert for summer, because we don’t always feel like eating fruity stuff just because it‘s berries season! I wanted to share how to make it with as much detail as possible.

For the biscuit:
6 eggs
6 tbs flour
6 tbs sugar
1 heaping tbs cocoa powder (or a bit more for a darker & more flavorful result)
2 tsp baking powder

To soak:
3 cups water
1 ½ - 2 cups sugar (however sweet you want the cake to be, filling is not too sweet because this is supposed to be)

For vanilla/banana filling:

2 (50g/1.75oz) vanilla puddings, cook 7 serve kind (or 1 vanilla, 1 banana)
You can substitute pudding for corn starch, same measurements, and add vanilla extract, or banana extract
3 2/3 cup milk
8-10 tbs sugar
8oz/ 2 sticks of unsalted butter or margarine, room temperature

Chocolate glaze:
100g/3.5 oz dark chocolate (I used Dove dark chocolate silky smooth promises)
3 tbs oil
(or use your own chocolate glaze or ganache recipe)

First make the filling/custard. Mix pudding mix/corn starch with sugar and some of the milk, like ¾ cup, until there are no more lumps. Set the remainder of the milk to boil, reduce the heat, and gradually stir in pudding mix, but mixing fast, until it thickens, and starts erupting. Transfer to a mixing bowl, and cool to room temperature. Cover the pudding so the skin wouldn’t form on top, and mix occasionally too.

When cooled to room temperature, add the butter or margarine (very important that its room temperature, both butter and the custard/filling), and mix well with a hand mixer. I normally add few drops of banana extract no matter how I made the filling,

While you’re waiting for the pudding to cool, make the biscuit. Preheat oven to 400° F. In one bowl mix egg whites until stiff enough that it wouldn’t fall out of the bowl if you flipped it upside down :)

Mix egg yolks with sugar until frothy, then add the egg whites, and fold in, then mix only a little just till it’s all incorporated nicely. Mix flour with baking powder and coca powder, and gradually add it to the eggs. Mix well, but don’t over mix.

Pour it into a baking dish. I use 15”x10” glass baking dish, no need to line it, or grease and flour it. Bake until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. One trick to have the biscuit come out nice and even is to slightly raise the baking dish from the countertop and then let it fall (have a kitchen towel on the countertop for a smooth landing :) ), several times, this releases the air out of the batter, works like a charm.

When it’s baked, it will be quite dry, but should be nicely risen, and even. Cool completely, poke with a toothpick all over, then boil sugar and water, and pour it over the biscuit. This will create a bit of mess on top, because the top skin with mush up, for the lack of a better word, but you can very easily remove that by scraping it with a spoon. Let it cool again, then spread the custard/filling over it, and even it out. You do all this in a baking dish, no need to take it out of the dish. I normally get the exact same height of the filling and biscuit, but this time that didn’t happen. No worries, still equally delicious.

In a double boiler melt the chocolate, and mix in 3 tbs of oil, or you can do this in a microwave if you’re skilled enough. Pour the chocolate as evenly as possible all over the cake, then even it out with a spoon or spatula, whatever works.

Cool in a fridge at least over night, and before serving cool in a freezer for a short time, just until it’s very cold, but not frozen. First piece of cake is impossible to cut out perfectly because the cake is in the dish, you’ll need to scoop it out with a spoon, so the first one goes to you! So make it a big one!!! :) After that cut as usual, and also cut or use fork to raise each cube from the bottom. Once you’re done with about 2 rows of cubes, you can slide the knife under the rest of it for an easier/cleaner bottom cut. Enjoy on a hot summer day!