Sunday, January 16, 2011

eat; orange chiffon cake

The other week I wanted to bake. It was during our six days of continuous rain here in Los Angeles and it was COLD! In the fridge were some oranges and I couldn't think of anything better to warm the house up than with the smell of oranges running through with the warmth of the oven. This cake is divine! It is light and fluffy and goes really well with vanilla bean whipped cream. We unfortunately did not have cream to serve with it on the night, but let me tell you, the day after, I was heading for a B-line straight for some cream!!!

Chiffon cakes were invented in the 1920s by a Californian (how appropriate!) named Henry Baker who went on to sell his recipe to General Mills in the 1940s. Chiffon cakes were popular in the 1950s and then seemed to fade away. I can imagine the ladies in their full skirt floral dresses, bum in the air opening the oven door to check if their cake was ready...and their kitchens! I got this recipe from the joy of baking website where the recipe was adapted from The Woman's Association of St. Paul's United Church's (Spryfield, Nova Scotia) "Book One Favorite Recipes" dated 1956.  So this would have actually been a recipe those 1950's housewives would have followed!!!!!

Here is the recipe. There are a few things to watch for that I'll mention throughout the recipe.

What you need;

6 large eggs, separated and at room temperature plus 1 additional egg white
2 1/4 cups of sifted all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups of castor sugar
1 Tb baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup of vegetable oil
3/4 cup of freshly squeezed orange juice
2 Tb orange zest
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 tsp cream of tartar (this can be replaced by baking powder)

Separate the eggs into two bowls. Preheat the oven to 170c (325f) and grease up then flour a 10" (25cm) ring cake tin.

In the bowl of your electric mixer, place sifted flour (don't be lazy here, the flour MUST be sifted). sugar (minus 3 Tb), baking powder and salt. Mix together until combined. 

Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add the egg yolks, oil, orange juice and zest and vanilla extract. Beat about one minute or until smooth. I don't have a mixer here in my share house in L.A so I did this step with a bit of elbow grease and a whisk.

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until they are foamy. Add the cream of tarter and continue beating until soft peaks form. 

Gradually beat in the 3 Tb of sugar until stiff peaks form. Make sure you do beat it until it is glossy and the peaks form and be careful not to over beat! The eggs will kind of separate if you did beat it too much.

With a large rubber spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the batter just until blended. Be careful NOT to deflate the batter. This cake is amazingly light and fluffy because of this step, so be gentle and stop turning when it is just mixed.

Pour batter into prepared cake tin and bake for about 55-60 minutes. Check with a skewer jabbing the cake close to the rings center.

Once cooked, invert the cake on a wire cooling rack whilst still hot. Let cake cool completely before removing from the pan. Once cool, run a long metal spatula around the inside of the ring tin and the center core.  Dust with icing sugar and voila, you have an amazing Orange Chiffon Cake to share with your friends!!!!

This cake will be good for a few days at room temperature or a week in the fridge. It can also be frozen.

You can replace the orange with lemon or lime for different flavours.

Buon Appetito!!!!

pink; five pink heads in the corner

Anyone know whats going on here because I certainly don't! Ahhhh Bruce, you are incredible!!! Just ask Hennesy! Bruce Nauman has been known for his eclectic mix of mediums and subject matter. His practice has been described as "fascinated by the nature of communication and language's inherent problems, as well as the role of the artist as supposed communicator and manipulator of visual symbols." Got that?!?!?!
Naumans sculpture above, is made from epoxy resin and fiberglass. They are heads stacked on top of each other and the tongue of each head is poking out. Five Pink Heads In The Corner (1992) makes me think of naughty kids sent to stand in the 'naughty corner', face the wall and 'think about what they have done', during the olden days of Primary School. Wait...I'm I having a flash back right now?!?!?! Or is the 'naughty corner' a collective memory that actually never existed? I was one of those kids that always got caught doing naughty stuff or blamed for others doing naughty stuff. This work is definitely bringing back those kinds of flashbacks for me.

Feel free to write a comment below of what you think is going on here with this sculpture. Would love to hear what people are thinking when looking at this. Naumans work is challenging at the best of times and this work definitely does not give anything away.

love; 10 things i love this week
1. This quotation website! Click on this link to get a quote for the year. LOVE!

2. Riding around L.A yesterday in Dolphina's mini convertable wearing our tiaras. What a lovely way to spend a winters day in L.A! We made so many people smile with our tiaras sparkling away in the sun! LOVE!

3. Finding this in the gutter on the ground along my travels here in L.A. LOVE!!!!!!
4. Coconut water!!!! It is the best way to sure a hang over!!!! Get into it! LOVE!
5. Wearing white eyeliner on the inside of the eye. I discovered this last year and am obsessed with it!!! . LOVE!

 6. Having fresh flowers in my bedroom. At the mo, I have miniature pink roses...LOVE!!!!!

7. Tom Storm is a photographer who takes photos of landmarks around the world, reflected in a bubble! Check this out! Love!!!

8. As Kramer states on an episode of Seinfeld, "Who's gonna turn down a Junior Mint? It's chocolate, it's peppermint; it's delicious!" I think so too! With it's retro packaging and history these are a definite choice when I get a chocolate craving. LOVE!!!!
9. My housemate Natalie and her black beetle! Well, especially when she goes away for work and lends me her car that is! I've had it for the last five days and L.A is even more bliss with it! LOVE!

10. Cherries!!!!! I do love them! Every year for Christmas Day either my brother, mum or myself will buy a box of them for the table. Soooo ridiculous to have soooo many cherries but they are soooo devine! I bought some yesterday which has confused the shit out of me because I thought they were a late spring, early summer fruit. Either ways, I aint complaining! LOVE!