Ice Cream Cake By: Aileen Anastacio You can make this days in advance and it will keep well as long as it’s stored in the freezer. You can also add some shaved chocolate on top and serve this with some whipped cream on the side. It adds texture and drama to this dessert. Makes 3 (9x5x3-inch) cakes Prep Time 20 to 30 minutes, plus 7 hours to overnight freezing time Baking Time 30 to 35 minutes
For the chocolate cake base 1/3 cup sugar 1/3 cup all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/3 cup cocoa powder 1/3 cup water 1/2 cup milk 1/4 cup vegetable oil 1 egg 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 to 4 1/2 cups pistachio ice cream, divided 3 to 4 1/2 cups vanilla ice cream, divided 3 to 4 1/2 cups mocha ice cream, divided shaved chocolate for garnish whipped cream for garnish (optional)
1 Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease, flour, and line an 8 x 12 x 2-inch baking pan. Set aside.
2 In a large bowl, stir together sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3 In another bowl, combine cocoa powder with water until it becomes a smooth paste. Gradually stir in the milk, oil, egg, then the vanilla. Beat by hand using a wire whisk or beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Gradually add the liquid mixture to the dry mixture. Stir just until combined. Do not overmix.
4 Pour batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes; remove from pan and transfer to a wire rack. Cool completely. Cut the chocolate cake into 9 x 5-inch pieces.
5 Assemble the ice cream cake: Line a 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap. Scoop 1 to 1 1/2 cups softened pistachio ice cream into the pan. Spread and level using a spoon or an offset spatula. Place in the freezer and allow to set for at least 1 hour. Scoop 1 to 1 1/2 cups softened vanilla ice cream over the pistachio ice cream. Spread and level using a spoon or an offset spatula. Place in the freezer again and allow to set for at least 1 hour. Repeat the procedure with 1 to 1 1/2 cups mocha ice cream. Place 1 piece cut chocolate cake over the mocha ice cream. Repeat with the rest of the ingredients to make 3 ice cream cakes. Leave to set overnight or at least 4 hours in the freezer before serving. Unmold cake onto a plate, chocolate cake side down. Garnish with shaved chocolate.
Banana Chocolate Chip Bread By: Aileen Anastacio Serves 8 to 10 Prep Time 10 minutes Baking Time 40 minutes
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 2/3 cup dark brown sugar 1/2 cup corn oil 2 eggs 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 3 very ripe bananas, mashed 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch loaf pan.
2 Combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Stir to mix.
3 In another bowl, combine sugar and corn oil. Add eggs one at a time, then add the vanilla and mashed bananas.
4 Add the flour mixture to the banana mixture. Stir until combined. Lastly, add the chocolate chips and mix just until combined. Pour mixture into the loaf pan.
5 Bake for about 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with just a few crumbs clinging to it. Remove bread from the oven then allow to cool for about 20 minutes before removing from the pan. Cool for another 15 minutes on a wire rack before serving.
Sugar tip Use the darkest brown sugar you can find in the market. The darker the sugar, the richer the color of the banana bread.
Buko Pandan Cake By: Aileen Anastacio Makes 2 6-inch cakes or 1 9-inch cake Prep Time 15 minutes Baking Time 20 to 25 minutes for a 9-inch cake
1 cup cake flour 3/4 cup sugar, divided 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/3 cup corn oil 4 eggs, separated 1/3 cup water 1 teaspoon pandan extract 1/4 teaspoon green food coloring 1/4 cup milk 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (for egg whites)
For the filling and icing 1 1/2 cups whipping cream 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar 1 tablespoon buko flavor extract (optional) 1 teaspoon pandan extract 1/8 teaspoon green food coloring 1/4 cup macapuno strips
1 Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line 2 (6-inch) round baking pans or 1 (9-inch) round pan; set aside.
2 In a medium bowl, sift together cake flour, 1/4 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt.
3 In a separate bowl, whisk together corn oil, egg yolks, water, pandan extract, green food coloring, and milk. Add this to the cake flour mixture, mixing until combined and smooth.
4 In an electric mixer, whip egg whites and cream of tartar on medium speed until frothy. Increase speed to medium high and gradually add remaining 1/2 cup sugar, whipping until glossy and stiff.
5 Gradually fold in the whipped egg whites to the batter; blend well.
6 Divide batter evenly into prepared pans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes (25 to 30 minutes if baking a 9-inch cake) or until top springs back when touched. Do not prick cakes.
7 Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
8 Make the icing: In an electric mixer, whip cream on medium-high speed. Gradually add sugar. Add the extracts and food coloring. Whip until stiff peaks form.
9 Assemble the cake: Trim off tops of the cake to smoothen cake layer. (Reserve cake tops to make cake crumbs.) Place cake tops in a food processor and process until crumbs form. Set aside.
10 Slice cake in half horizontally to make 2 cake layers. Place one cake layer on a plate or cake stand. Place about 1 cup whipped cream filling over the cake then spread evenly using an offset spatula. Add a layer of macapuno strips then top with the other cake layer.
11 Ice the cake all over with the whipped cream filling.
12 Dust top and sides of cake with cake crumbs. Decorate with icing piped in the shape of rosettes or shells.
Honeycomb Crunch Cake By: Aileen Anastacio A light, spongy chiffon cake, layered and iced with softly whipped cream, and topped with crunchy honeycomb coffee candy. Such an interesting mix of textures! Makes 1 10-inch cake Prep Time 25 minutes Baking Time 30 minutes
For the cake 1 cup cake flour 1/2 cup plus 1/3 cup sugar, divided 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/3 cup corn oil 5 eggs, separated 1/2 cup water 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar 3 cups honeycomb candy
For the honeycomb 1 1/2 cups sugar 1/3 cup strong coffee 1/4 cup honey 1/3 cup light corn syrup 2 tablespoons glucose 1 1/4 tablespoons baking soda
For the icing 3 cups whipping cream 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a 10-inch baking pan with parchment paper and set aside. (Learn how to line a pan here.)
2 In a medium bowl, sift together cake flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt.
3 In a separate bowl, whisk together corn oil, egg yolks, water, and vanilla extract. Add to the dry mixture and mix until well combined and smooth.
4 In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the egg whites and cream of tartar on medium speed until frothy. Increase speed to medium-high and gradually add the remaining sugar. Whip until glossy and stiff.
5 Gradually fold the whipped egg whites to the batter, making sure it is well blended.
6 Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes or until top springs back when touched. Do not prick.
7 Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
8 Make the honeycomb: Line a baking sheet with a nonstick mat or parchment paper. In a large, heavy-bottomed nonstick saucepan, combine sugar, coffee, honey, light corn syrup, and glucose.
9 Bring to a boil until candy thermometer registers 290ºF and sugar begins to caramelize or turn amber in color.
10 Add the baking soda by sifting it over the mixture for even distribution. Using a wooden spoon, stir in gently to keep the mixture from deflating. The mixture will foam up.
11 Pour the mixture into the prepared baking sheet and let cool completely. Break into pieces.
12 Make the icing: In an electric mixer, whip cream to soft peaks. Gradually add in sugar, whipping until stiff.
13 Assemble the cake: Slice cake in half horizontally. Place the bottom half on a cake board or cake tray/stand. Place about 1 cup icing over the cake then spread evenly using an offset spatula. Add a layer of honeycomb pieces, about 1 1/2 cups, then top with the other cake half.
14 Ice the cake with whipped cream.
15 Stack the remaining honeycomb pieces on top of the cake to finish.
Aileen’s tips: • Before you even start preparing the cake, make sure that your oven is at the right temperature (verify with an oven thermometer).
• Use fresh eggs and keep them at room temperature.
• Before adding the sugar, make sure you whip the egg whites until they’re frothy with small bubbles.
• When you add the sugar into the whipped egg whites, do so one tablespoon at a time and whip until the mixture is glossy and stiff.
• Use a wire whisk when folding the whipped whites with the batter, or better yet, your hands—this way, you can feel if the mixture’s been mixed well already. Do this slowly to prevent the whites from losing its volume.
• Try to make the honeycomb in a cool or air-conditioned area. Humidity causes the candy crunch to “weep” and become sticky. If you prefer, you can purchase readymade honeycomb at Sweetcraft. Look for “sugar crunch.” (SweetCraft is located at #373 Boni Avenue, Mandaluyong City; tel nos.: 532-1595, 571-8008, or check out SweetCraft’s facebook page) .
• When the honeycomb mixture is ready, pour it into a greased baking pan and leave it. Do not level it off using a spatula or tap it to make the mixture spread out—just let it be. Once cooled, break it into pieces and keep in an airtight container to prevent it from melting.
Mango Torte By: Aileen Anastacio Right before serving, if you wish, you may drizzle some chocolate sauce over the slice, making it a rich, gooey treat. To keep the heat at bay, pair it with home-brewed iced tea or an iced latte. Enjoy! Makes 2 (8-inch) tortes Prep Time 10 minutes Baking Time 1 1/2 to 2 hours
For the meringue 1/3 cup egg whites, from about 2 large eggs (Learn How to Separate an Egg here) 3/4 cup sugar 1/4 cup chopped walnuts 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
For the topping 2 cups whipping cream 1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar buttercream for spreading (optional) 4 pieces ripe mangoes, balled
1 Preheat oven to 200ºF. Line two baking sheets with greased parchment paper.
2 Make the meringue: Beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar a tablespoon at a time. Beat until stiff.
3 Reduce speed to low. Gradually add walnuts. Mix until well combined. Mix in flour.
4 Divide the meringue in half. Place an 8-inch ring mold on the greased parchment. Scoop half the meringue and spread evenly using an offset spatula. Remove the ring mold and do the same with the other half of the meringue on the other cookie sheet.
5 Bake in the oven for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until crisp. Allow to cool and store in an airtight container.
6 Make the topping: In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip cream on high. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar and whip until stiff peaks form. Transfer whipped cream into a piping bag with a star tip.
7 Assemble the torte: Place meringue base on a cake board or cake tray. Spread some buttercream on top, if desired, then pipe about 1/4 cup of cream and spread evenly over the meringue. Pipe the cream in ripples, spacing the rows about 1/2-inch apart.
8 Place mango balls in between the rows of cream, then pipe cream along the edge of the torte.
9 Place in an airtight container and keep in the freezer until ready to serve.
Chocolate Cake with Toasted Pecans and Bourbon Caramel Custard By: Aileen Anastacio Yield 12 individual cakes Prep Time 30 minutes Cooking Time 90 minutes
For the cake 1 egg 2/3 cup corn oil 1 cup buttermilk (combine 1 cup fresh milk and 1 tablespoon vinegar; let it sit for 5 minutes) 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 3/4 cups sugar 1/2 cup cocoa powder 1 tablespoon baking soda 1 tablespoon salt 1 cup hot coffee
For the filling 1/2 cup dark brown sugar 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 egg yolks 2 tablespoons butter 1 cup fresh milk 2 tablespoons bourbon
For the chocolate icing 2 1/3 cups semisweet chocolate morsels 3 cups heavy cream 2 tablespoons light corn syrup 2 tablespoons butter 1 cup toasted and sliced pecans, for filling and garnish 1 cup store-bought caramel sauce, for garnish
1 Grease and flour 12 individual cake pans and set aside.
2 Make chocolate cake: Combine egg, corn oil, and buttermilk in a bowl, and mix well. In a separate bowl, combine flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt; mix well. Pour liquid mixture into the flour mixture. Mix using a wire whisk. Pour coffee into the batter and mix until just combined. (The batter should be thin and slightly runny.) Pour batter into baking pans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes at 350ºF or until tester comes out clean.
3 Make the custard filling: In a metal bowl, mix dark brown sugar, flour, egg yolks, butter, and milk thoroughly. Place in a double boiler on medium-low heat and stir until thickened, about 20 minutes. Cool. Add bourbon and mix well. Cool completely before using.
4 Make the icing: Place chocolate and cream in a medium saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until thick, about 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in corn syrup and butter. Transfer to a metal bowl and refrigerate until frosting is cool enough to spread, about 2 hours (check and stir every 15 minutes).
5 To assemble: Slice the cake horizontally in half. Place the custard on the bottom half. Sprinkle with toasted pecans. Top with another cake slice. Cover cake with chocolate icing. Garnish with toasted pecans on the sides of the cake and decorate with caramel sauce on top.
Creme Brulee Tart with Peaches By: Aileen Anastacio Yields 6 individual tarts Prep Time 20 minutes Baking Time 25 minutes
For the custard 7 egg yolks 1/2 cup granulated sugar 2 2/3 cups liquid cream 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 2 tablespoons granulated sugar for topping 3 to 4 pieces canned peach halves, sliced
For the flaky pie pastry 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/3 cup cold butter, cubed 2 tablespoons shortening 2 tablespoons cold water, or up to 1/4 cup
1 Prepare the flaky pie pastry: In a large bowl, combine the flour and salt and stir to mix. Scatter the butter and shortening pieces over the flour mixture. Using a fork or pastry blender, toss flour to coat then cut in the butter and shortening until the mixture forms large, coarse crumbs, the size of large peas.
2 Drizzle the ice water over the mixture and toss with the pastry blender until the dough is evenly moist and begins to come together in a mass but does not form into a ball.
3 Transfer the dough to a work surface. Roll dough to form a disk. Wrap disk tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled, about 1 hour for up to overnight.
4 Make the custard: Whisk yolks and sugar in a double boiler until thickened, about 10 minutes. Bring cream and vanilla to a boil and gradually add to the egg mixture. Cook in a bowl over simmering water, whisking constantly for an additional of 5 to 8 minutes. Remove from heat. Allow to cool completely.
5 Make the tart shells: Let the dough sit at room temperature for at least 10 to 15 minutes to soften the dough. Roll each dough between two sheets of parchment paper to 1/8-inch thickness, 5 inches in diameter. Place the dough into the tart pan and allow the dough to take the shape of the pan. Press the dough into the edges. Gently prick the bottom of the tart using a fork. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for about 20 to 30 minutes. Place aluminum foil over the dough and gently mold it to the dough in the pan. Add pie weights (dried beans work well). Bake at 375F for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and weights and bake for another 10 minutes or until golden. Transfer tart to a wire rack and allow to cool completely.
6 Once shells are completely cool, pour the custard into the completely cooled tart shells. Chill in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours or until set. To serve, sprinkle sugar on top of the tarts. Use a blow torch to caramelize the top. Return to the refrigerator for about 15 to 30 minutes. Top crème brulée with sliced peaches and brush with pastry gel or syrup where peaches are soaked in before serving.