| Hazelnut orange carrot cake. |
| To create this carrot cake, you will begin building it upside down. Line the cake ring with an acetate sheet cut to the height of the cake ring. You may use a textured acetate sheet, cut to the diameter of the cake frame, on the bottom. Fill the ring with the first layer of mousse. |
| Place the cake/cremeux layer in the cake ring, cremeux side down, on top of the mousse. Use a cake press to ensure even layers. |
| In the cake ring, add another layer of mousse on top of the cake/cremeux layer. |
| Place the cake/hazelnut layer, hazelnut side down, into the cake ring on top of the second layer of mousse. Press again with cake press. |
| Once all of the layers have been assembled, freeze the cake. After freezing, invert the cake right side up, and remove the cake ring. Then, garnish the sides with macaroons, and spray the cake with melted white chocolate and cocoa butter. |
| Chef John Kraus, pastry chef and instructor at The French Pastry School at City Colleges of Chicago teaches his students the art of pastry that includes advanced bread techniques. In 2005 and 2006, Chef Kraus was named one of the Top Ten Pastry Chefs in the United States by a national pastry magazine. For more information on The French Pastry School, visit www.frenchpastryschool.com. |
This version of an American classic, the carrot cake, demonstrates how ordinary desserts can be adapted to become truly unique. Today’s consumers are more aware of freshness and quality, and they are looking for desserts that are appealing to the eye, but also have distinct combinations of flavor and texture.
Traditional carrot cake is composed of three layers of cake, cream cheese icing, toasted pecans and decoration. Customers are looking for new and different ways to enjoy classic desserts, and this carrot cake version gives a classic cake a unique twist.
Some of the layers used in this carrot cake are typical, and some are non-traditional. Instead of the traditional incorporation of pineapple, this version uses exotic fruits in the cream layer. Pecans are typically used in carrot cake, but I chose to use hazelnuts to introduce a new texture and flavor. If your customers do not like hazelnuts or any other flavors or textures used in this formula, substitute them with what your market will buy. You want to challenge the traditional, yet still entice the customers.
A technique used in this formula introduces a new way of cake building and decorating that is clean, fast and efficient. Bake the carrot cake in a 160 mm cake ring, which is one inch smaller than the final cake. By baking the cake in a smaller ring, the actual building is cleaner and more efficient. Slice the cake in two equal halves, and place each slice on a 160 mm cake circle. Then, layer one carrot cake slice with exotic cream and the other with caramelized hazelnuts. Line a 200 mm diameter and 45 mm high cake ring with plastic strips around the edge. And, cover the bottom with a textured acetate sheet.
Once the layers are set, start building the cake upside down in the prepared 200 mm ring. Add a layer of mousse. Invert the carrot cake layered with the exotic cremeux inserts on top of the mousse. Press the layer evenly with a cake press. Then, add another layer of mousse. Flip the carrot cake slice topped with hazelnuts on top of the second layer of mousse. Freeze the cake in the ring.
Invert the cake right side up and remove the ring. Spray the cake using a paint gun with a combination of 1 lb. melted white chocolate and 1 lb. melted cocoa butter. You may use an airbrush, but the cocoa butter and chocolate must remain warm. Then, place macaroons (formula provided) around the side of the cake. Garnish with dried carrots and chocolate logo.
In today’s industry, quality is the number one reason why you will have repeat customers. Each time they come into your shop they will expect the freshest and highest quality products. Keep these new techniques in mind when building your next cake. Take the traditional concepts and formulas that your market already appreciates and modify them.
Hazelnut orange carrot cake
Fresh whole eggs 130 g
Sucrose 130 g
Finely ground sea salt 0.5 g
Hazelnut powder 190 g
Grappe seed oil 20 g
Hazelnut oil 10 g
Pastry flour 100 g
Baking powder 13 g
Baby carrots, shredded 320 g
Crushed roasted hazelnuts 75 g
Candied oranges 85 g
Total appr. wt. 1.074 kg
Method: Butter and flour three cake moulds (160 mm & 45 mm high). Whip to ribbon stage the eggs, sucrose and salt. Add the hazelnut powder, oils, flour and baking powder (sifted together), shredded carrots, crushed roasted hazelnuts and candied oranges. Pour the batter into the cake moulds, and bake in a convection oven, vent open, at 340°F (170ºC) for about 45 minutes. Remove the cake from the moulds while still warm, and place them on a cooling rack.
Yield: 3 cakes.
Cream cheese mousse
Cream cheese 375 g
Sour cream 275 g
Organic freshly squeezed lemon juice 47 g
Lemon zest 1/2 lemon
Water 40 g
Sucrose 94 g
Fresh egg yolks 50 g
Gelatin 6 g
Heavy cream 35% fat 430 g
Total appr. wt. 1.317 kg
Method: Warm the cream cheese, add the sour cream, lemon juice, zest and homogenize. Cook the water and sucrose to 248ºF (120ºC), and pour over the yolks to make a pâte a bombe. Add the melted gelatin solution to the pâte a bombe. (Hydrate the gelatin with 30 g of water). Fold in sour cream mixture and whipped cream. Pipe immediately.
Exotic cremeux inserts
Mango puree, 10% 20 g
Passion fruit puree, 10% 115 g
Litchi puree, 10% 90 g
Fresh egg yolks 75 g
Fresh whole eggs 75 g
Sucrose 50 g
Gelatin 6 g
Unsalted butter, 82% fat 100 g
Fresh bananas 250 g
Total appr. wt. 781 g
Method: Cook the purees, eggs and sucrose to 185ºF (85ºC). Strain and add the melted gelatin solution. (Hydrate the gelatin with 30 g of water). When cooled to 95ºF (35ºC), add the butter and homogenize. Place large pieces of banana in 160 mm circle inserts, cover with the cremeux, and top with a slice of hazelnut orange carrot cake.
White chocolate caramelized hazelnuts
Whole skinned hazelnuts 400 g
Sucrose 100 g
Water 40 g
Bourbon vanilla bean 1/4
Unsalted butter, 82% fat 20 g
Total appr. wt. 560 g
Caramelized hazenuts* 225 g
Finely ground sea salt 1 g
White chocolate couverture 120 g
Total appr. wt. 346 g
Method A: Warm the hazelnuts. Cook the sucrose with the water to 239ºF (115ºC). Add the nuts and stir until the mixture begins to sand. Continue cooking until the sugar melts and caramelizes evenly around the nuts. Quickly add the butter, mix well and pour over a non-stick mat.
Method B: Add the tempered white chocolate and salt to the tempered nuts, and spread on the carrot cake.
Use the remaining hazelnuts from A for another cake.
Almond flour 187.5 g
Confectionery sugar 187.5 g
Egg whites 62.5 g
Egg whites 90 g
Salt 1 g
Sucrose 187.5 g
Water 50 g
Glucose 10 g
Total appr. wt. 776 g
Method: Bring all ingredients to room temperature.
Mixture A: Sift the almond powder with the confectionery sugar and let dry. Fold in the egg whites, and mix until homogenized.
Mixture B: Boil the sucrose with the glucose and water to 248°F (120˚C). Do not stir in the syrup after it boils or it will crystallize. Whisk the egg whites with the salt half way. Pour the hot sugar over the whites, and whisk until the meringue is stiff, but still shiny. Fold the meringue into the almond mixture until it becomes glossy and slightly runny. Pipe quarter size bulbs onto parchment, and bake right away at 300°F (149°C) for 10 to 11 minutes, vent open in a convection oven. Let cool and freeze immediately.
The dry ingredients should be left to dry before attempting macaroons.