Happy end of the week and happy upcoming holidays to you readers, today’s post can be a whole cake but I put it in these cupcake/peanut party tins that I’m basically obsessed with for a cuter individual look.
Behind the Scenes (BTS): I don’t usually make a lot of cakes since there aren’t enough of us in the apartment to eat all of it before it goes bad (although we have been getting to know the neighbors quite a bit lately and we pawn a lot of the sweets on them as well) and because I find it to be a hassle to make an entire cake, layer and decorate it so even when I find a cake recipe I want to try I never make it into an actual cake.
In terms of the dish: Cranberries and white chocolate, a lot of people who I gave this too said they never heard of the combination before which seemed strange to me since I’m sure it’s been done before, it was just that none of us have heard about it; I wish I could say that the reasoning behind the flavor combination was some culinary flavor epiphany but it was because I had plenty of leftover cranberries and the only chocolate I had left was white. That being said it turned out delicious and the crunchy top of sprinkled sugar was superb.
Adjustments: I actually never made a sponge cake before this, I’ve eaten plenty of sponge cakes but never made one so I didn’t know what adjustments had to be made. I found a very, Very, VERY basic sponge cake recipe on cooks.com and altered it by leaving out the lemon. In this specific recipe the cooking directions were worked out fine but since then I’ve added melted butter to it when I’ve done other sponge cake desserts and have changed the technique of making it depending on how I wanted the cake to be.
If you want your cake not to be so airy and a bit more dense I would suggest separating your egg yolks and whites and using 1/4 cup of your sugar in the egg yolks over a double boiler on low heat until the sugar has dissolved (about 5 minutes; also you can rub some of the egg yolk mixture in between your fingers to make sure it’s no longer grainy but smooth), take it off the heat and start mixing it with your hand mixer until it is a pale pastel Easter yellow and thick and ribbons from the hand mixer whisk attachment; in another bowl mix your egg whites until completely foamy with soft peaks and add the remainder of your sugar so it turns into a meringue type concoction, slowly fold in the egg yolk mixture and then add the flour alternately with 4 tablespoons of cooled melted butter.
Overall: Overall I like this recipe, the nice tart of the cranberries compliments the sweet taste of the white chocolate and since the cranberries don’t have water in them, mostly air, they still hold their form and don’t really melt into the batter altering the texture; while the nice smooth nutty aftertaste of the white chocolate is a great secondary component to the overall flavor.
The best parts for my roommates where the toasted crunchy sweet chocolates that were at the bottom and the nice crunch on top from the sprinkled sugar.
Ta-Ta-For-Now: So I hope you all enjoy this festive recipe as it is too darling and too delicious for you not to try! If your thinking of other fruit to try in this I would say use frozen fruit or dehydrated fruit; berry fruit especially has tendencies of watering down whatever your baking it with and you don’t want that with this recipe.
Cranberry & White Chocolate Sponge Cake
4 eggs (200 grams)
1 c. (200 grams) sugar (extra for sprinkling over before baking)
1 c. (140 grams) flour
1/2 tsp. (2 grams) salt
1 c. (100 grams) cranberries
1/2 c. (90 grams) white chocolate
**Fine Sea Salt to pinch over before baking**
Powdered sugar for decoration
Cupcake holders (optional)
Large metal bowl
Baking pan (if not using the cupcake method)
1. Measure out all ingredients and pre-heat oven to 350F/180C first and foremost; then sift flour 3 to 4 times with the cranberries and white chocolate in the sifter to make sure the fruit and chocolate have a good coat of flour on it to not fall to the bottom while baking.
2. In the large metal bowl with hand mixer beat eggs until they are thick and lemon colored (about 3 – 5 minutes on medium high speed). Once thick add the sugar slowly while still mixing with the hand mixer.
3. Once all the sugar has been added and the egg/sugar mixture gives a ribbon flow (turn off your hand mixer and lift it, the egg/sugar mixture should fall down like a ribbon and dissolve back into the remainder of the egg/sugar mixture in the bowl.) slowly add the flour, alternate between flour mixing and folding to make sure it’s still fluffy.
4. Once the flour is completely folded in add the cranberries and white chocolate and give 1 to 3 good folds into the batter.
5. Either add the batter to cupcake molds (15 minutes baking time) to have a display like in the pictures or add the batter to a loaf pan (20 – 25 minute baking time) for a festive look also. If you’re not going for festive and you just want to bake it as a cake then pour into a average size circle cake pan and bake for 25 – 30 minutes; **add some sprinkled sugar and a few sprinkles of fine sea salt over the batter before putting it in the oven.**