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Room Temperature Fillings
Posted: 07 April 2010 01:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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That technique is often used for angel food cake—perhaps that’s where you’ve seen it?

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Posted: 07 April 2010 03:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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I love the moist chocolate genoise. I have had the chocolate/water mixture ?break? only once, and that?s when I scorched the bottom of it (too high heat + too light of a sauce pan + not enough whisking = scorching and ?breaking?). I?ve taken to heating the mixture over a simmering water bath, so it doesn?t come into contact with a direct heat source. Takes a bit longer, but I think it?s worth the extra ?cushion.? The little specs of chocolate in the genoise you found was probably the cocoa solids coming out suspension. You don?t really notice it on the tongue because they pretty much dissolve in the mouth.

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Posted: 07 April 2010 04:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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CharlesT - 07 April 2010 04:46 PM

Didn’t I see somewhere that mixing a bit of the sugar with the flour helps prevent pellets?

I think Shirley Corriher says this in Bakewise, to reserve a tablespoon of sugar from the eggs and whisk it into the flour to help with folding/pellets.  Many of her genoise tips come from other pastry chefs, so she may have quoted someone else in the book (I forget).

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Posted: 09 April 2010 10:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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Roxanne - 07 April 2010 06:18 PM

You don?t really notice it on the tongue because they pretty much dissolve in the mouth.

That’s kinda what I suspected while looking at them.  Perhaps that was related to the broken chocolate.

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Posted: 09 April 2010 11:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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Julie - 07 April 2010 07:07 PM

I think Shirley Corriher says this in Bakewise,

You’re right, I looked it up.  She says she got it from Flo Braker, but Flo Braker doesn’t mention in her book.

On a side note, what is your take on the sponge cakes where you mix the yokes and whites separately?  How does this compare to a genoise?  This seems to be the main kind of cake that Maida Heatter uses in her chocolate dessert book.  As I read through one cake after another, each purporting to make a chocolate layer cake, I’m wondering, “sounds good, but why would I make this sort of cake over another?”  How can I choose?

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Posted: 10 April 2010 10:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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CharlesT - 10 April 2010 02:00 AM

On a side note, what is your take on the sponge cakes where you mix the yokes and whites separately?  How does this compare to a genoise?  This seems to be the main kind of cake that Maida Heatter uses in her chocolate dessert book.  As I read through one cake after another, each purporting to make a chocolate layer cake, I’m wondering, “sounds good, but why would I make this sort of cake over another?”  How can I choose?

There are two basic points to consider when choosing. First, whether the eggs are whipped whole or separated.  The RHC Tres Leches beats them whole, while the Cake Bible Biscuit de Savoie beats them separately.  The whole egg cake has a slightly denser, finer-grained texture, while the separated-egg cake achieves the maximum volume and lightness.  So choose the separated-egg technique when trying to achieve the highest, lightest volume.  Sometimes this is used when incorporating heavy ingredients such as ground nuts or chocolate.

The second point to consider is whether there is added butter (or oil, or cocoa butter in the case of moist chocolate gen).  I think this makes a bigger difference, flavor-wise and texture-wise, than whether the eggs are separated or whole.  The more butter, the heavier and denser the texture and the more amplified the flavor. 

So biscuit is lighter in texture and milder in flavor, while genoise is more fine-grained and flavorful from the butter.  Biscuit also needs more syrup, and is generally slightly sweeter than genoise.  Also genoise can have a wide range of butter content, from a little (genoise classique) to a lot (bittersweet cocoa-almond gen), and that changes the texture and flavor dramatically.

Back to Maida’s chocolate book, I’m guessing that she uses the separated-egg method with bar chocolate because of the cocoa butter content.  Bar chocolate has a higher fat content than cocoa powder, and so needs more lift from the eggs to compensate.  Cocoa butter is also more highly saturated than butter and so is heavier.  It emulsifies more than butter, giving a more fine-grained cake.  Choose cakes with bar chocolate when you want the flavor of a chocolate bar.  Choose cakes with cocoa powder/butter when you want a more complex flavor that, to me, tastes more traditionally of “chocolate cake”.

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Posted: 11 April 2010 10:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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Julie - 10 April 2010 01:32 PM

There are two basic points to consider when choosing.

Very helpful, thank you Julie!

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