Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Pavlova + Cake = at least it sounds good!

It was the fiance's mom's birthday and I wanted to make a not-your-average cake for the dinner we were having at a restaurant. At first, I wanted to make a pavlova, but as I started making it, things were not working out and I had to figure out a way to salvage it. I didn't have time or ingredients to start over! I decided to make a single layer cake on the bottom, top it with the pavlova (or whatever came out of the oven) and add whipped cream to hold it together. I'll tell you right now that it didn't turn out as I'd hoped, but at least I learned a few things along the way:

Lessons learned while making this cake:
Do not wrap cake with a slice of bread. I read that to keep a cake moist overnight, a trick is to leave it out with a slice of bread on top. Well, I thought, Wouldn't it be better to wrap the cake in plastic wrap with a slice of bread on top? The answer is NO. The cake layer was waay too moist - like a pudding cake as someone described it. Ick. I should've just wrapped it in plastic wrap with out the bread as usual.

Making meringue in humidity is dangerous. OK, maybe not dangerous but inconsistent. The pavlova was supposed to be big and fluffy. It didn't get big, and it didn't get fluffy. The egg white and sugar mixture never formed stiff peaks on this humid Vancouver day.

Two tablespoons of egg whites out of the carton does not equal a large egg white from a shell. This is an eyeball comparison, but although the carton said they are equivalent, next time I'd use 3 tablespoons of egg whites to replace one large egg white.

If you want to have a go at this cake, take your favourite pavlova recipe (here's the one I used), half of a vanilla cake recipe (I used this one), and make some stabilized whipped cream, like this

Second time around, I would use a sponge cake for the bottom, like from here

Good luck! 

Here's a peek at the inside.

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