Thursday, July 26, 2012

Mango Mille Crêpes 香芒千層薄餅

What comes to your mind when you hear the word "cake"? Sweet, soft, something made with flour, eggs, sugar, oil/fat and then baked? According to the Webster dictionary, a cake is "a breadlike food made from a dough or batter that is usually fried or baked in small flat shapes and is often unleavened."
I think this is the first time I make a cake that is not baked but fried. It is called Gâteau de Crêpes in French or Mille Crêpes. Essentially it is a stack of 15-20 plus very thin crêpes with pastry cream or jam spread in between. It is not served at breakfast as Americans do with pancakes but enjoyed as a dessert.
I was a bit shocked to see the price tag of a 9 inch Mille Crêpe Cake sold in a fancy cake shop in New York City (Lady M $75-80). The ingredients are nothing extraordinary. But it does take skill, patience and time to fry those twenty plus pieces of paper thin crêpes. It took me about 30 minutes to fry a batch. After that, just layer with whatever flavored pastry cream you prefer. I picked mango for this one, but you might like strawberry, dark chocolate ganache, vanilla or green tea better. The batter of this French crêpe is much thinner than our regular American pancake batter. Just remember to fry it as thin as possible for best texture.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Matcha Mousse Cake 綠茶慕絲蛋糕

Matcha always gives me a light and refreshing feeling. It's also great when I infuse it into a mousse cake. The addition of Italian meringue makes it very light and smooth.


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Korean Kimbap 韓式紫菜飯卷 김밥

It has been a pleasant summer so far in Southern California, compared to the rest of the country where triple digit temperature has been prevailing. We have been blessed by marine layers from the Pacific Ocean which serve as a natural air conditioner to keep us around 80F for most of Los Angeles.
On hot summer days, light meals with easy to fix ingredients are preferred, like kimbap, a Korean dish similar to California rolls. It is fun to make (my daughter LOVES to do it) and easy to eat. It can be an appetizer or side dish. You can make kimbap whenever you don't feel like cooking. The ingredients do not need any cooking, except the fried egg and rice, but like the rest of the ingredients, it can be replaced with other foods of your choice. It can also be completely vegetarian.

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