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.
當你想到『蛋糕』時會想到些什麼呢? 用麵粉、蛋、糖及牛油而焗成的甜品、軟綿綿,好好食?跟據字典的定義, 蛋糕是一種用蛋槳經烘焙或煎而成的平面食物。經烘焙而做成的蛋糕做得多,今次我嘗試用煎的方法去做蛋糕。這種蛋糕源自法國,法文翻譯過來是叫『薄餅蛋糕』或是『千層薄餅』。它是用十五至廿幾張煎得很薄的薄餅做成,每張薄餅之間塗上奶油,這種薄餅蛋糕有別於美式早餐的薄餅,它通常是當甜品來品嚐的。
當我見到紐約市一間高檔餅鋪的千層薄餅標價七十五至八十元時,真是有點震驚 (Lady M)。用的材料十分普通,但要相當的手工、耐性及時間去煎出廿多張薄如紙的薄餅。我只用了約半小時去完成,跟著便塗上奶油,可以隨你口味選擇,如這款芒果味,或草莓、黑巧克力、綠茶、雲呢哪等等,慢慢一張一張疊上去便成了。但要謹記這種法式薄餅的蛋槳要比美式的稀,而且要煎得越薄越好!
Ingredients for the crêpes 薄餅材料:
125g/1cup all purpose flour 中筋麵粉
250g/1 cup milk 牛奶
125g/1/2 cup water 水
4 large eggs 大雞蛋
56g/4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted 無鹽牛油溶液
3 tbsp sugar 糖
1 pinch of salt 鹽
1 tbsp Grand Marnier or rum, optional but recommended 橙酒或蘭姆酒
1) Put eggs, water or beer, sugar, salt, Grand Marnier and melted butter in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Add flour and mix until it is blended. Do not overmix. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
2) Take out the batter for about 30 minutes to an hour for it to come to room temperature before frying.
3) Heat up a good non-stick pan (mine is 9 inch) and slightly coat it with oil under low heat.
4) When the pan is ready, ladle or spoon enough batter just to coat the pan thinly. You can also pour more than you need and pour out the excess by lifting, tilting and rotating the pan.
5) Cook until it is set, about 1-2 minutes. Carefully lift it up to a plate and let cool. It is not necessary to fry the other side.
6) Repeat until all the batter is used up.
Mango Whipped Cream 芒果奶油:
200g heavy cream 奶油
200g mango puree 芒果蓉
Whip heavy cream until soft peaks form. Add mango puree and mix well. Refrigerate until ready to use. 打發奶油至六成左右,加入芒果蓉拌勻,放雪柜備用。
Cake Assembly :
Spread a thin layer of mango cream on one crêpe and then layer another one on top. Repeat with the rest of the crêpes. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight before serving. Optional: prinkle powdered sugar on top.
1) Try to use a blender to mix the crêpe ingredients. It will give you a smoother batter than whisking by hand.
2) The batter needs at least an hour in the refrigerator for the gluten to relax, if not overnight.