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Monday, April 30, 2012

Chiffon Tips from DeQueen

I won't call myself as an expert in chiffon baking.But after baking more than 10+ chiffons cakes with 20% failed,i guess i can at least give some tips and advices on chiffon cake making.I will be highlighting a few common problems that most faced.

If taken from website,i would look closely at the cake itself,the texture and the shape whether it is even or not.(Pictures can tell a lot sometimes.)
If taken from book,then no choice,just try out.
If modifying,it will be good if you measure the ratio of the flour and liquid.See here for more info.

2.Folding the batter.
Make sure that you beat your egg whites only when you are ready to fold as they tend to deflate on their own.(impatient!!) Fold the egg whites bit by bit and you will find that they blend easier with the egg yolk mixture.Fold them from the outside/under to prevent deflating.Alternatively,you can fold with your hand.(I don't do that though.)

3.Filling the tin.
This is important though it may appear simple.If you have this thinking "just pour in,what is so difficult?",then good luck to you.Sometimes no matter how well you did your batter,your cake somehow just failed during or after baking.
So,it means most probably is the filling or temperature part that went wrong.The tip to have smooth top and fully filled cake(no dents,tunnels,etc.) is after folding in your batter,hit the mixing bowl's base on the table around 3 times.Then start to fill the tin.After filling the tin,dip a chopstick into the tin and go round a few times.Hit the tin base on the table twice,smooth the surface with spatula and hit it twice again before you put them in the oven.In this way,your cake will turn out real smooth and beautiful.Don't worry about deflating the batter,unless you are hitting them with a lot of strength and like 100 times. ;p

Slight cracks are common,they will sort of seal back when cooled.But big cracks are not and can be an eyesore,although you pray hard that no one will see it as you will be flipping it over or slicing them off.Ha!
This is my method when comes to temperature controlling.I bake all my chiffons,be it 13cm or 17cm at 170°C.When i start to see them brown (most likely after 20 minutes),i will switch to 160°C and bake till cooked.(about 10 more minutes for 13cm and 20 more minutes for 17cm.)
Overbaking results in dry cakes and underbaking results in damp cake,bleh! So play around with the timing and you will get the hang of it soon.

You can unmould with the back of a thin knife,go as closely to the tin as possible.Alternatively,you can unmould using your hands.I just learnt about this two days ago.And after mustering some courage,i tried,its really good!The cake just look smoother.See the difference!

Top:By knife.Bottom:By hand.

You just need to press lightly along the edges of the tin and center piece,give a gentle twist on the center piece,its out.Then to remove from center piece,just press along the edges and flip it over.Easy as ABC!!Here's a video i found at Youtube.

Edited:10 April 2013
Many asked me how to know if a chiffon is done. Here's a collage of my chiffon sauna-ing in the oven-clockwise.
When the chiffon rises to its peak(pic 5) and starts to shrink(pic 6),its ready.It takes me about 40 minutes for 15cm tube tin and 45 minutes for 17cm tube tin. I am using this method to know if my chiffon is done(the skewer test is not accurate,at least for me~),hope it works for you as well!

Alright,thats all i have to share for now.Till then,happy chiffoning!!

~Indulge in what we make at DeQueenKitchen~

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