Cloudy With A Chance of Fluffy Pandan Chiffon Cake...

Today I continued my trip down memory lane; this time with Pandan Chiffon Cake, one that mom used to make very often when I was a wee kid. I remember I was only allowed to stir the thick green batter with a wooden spoon and not touch the egg whites. That was when I first mused to myself that eggwhites must be for grown ups only and not to be trusted in the hands of an 8 year old. Mom has often commented that Chiffon cakes are temperamental, “Aihhh, sometimes they rise so high and stay that way and sometimes the cake just sinks immediately after baking”. With that in mind, I did not attempt to make any, UNTIL the Chinatown store in Melbourne suddenly stopped selling those Chiffon cakes, much to my disappointment. I have to try somehow to make it.
 
I have previously made an Orange Chiffon cake following the recipe from Joy of Baking  and was quite impressed with the texture. For my pandan chiffon cake, I’ve modified the orange version and tested it to include coconut milk and pandan juice/extract. The result was a dreamy, pillowy soft, moist and fragrant chiffon cake that kept its height. To ensure success, read the important tips under “Notes” below the recipe:-

 

Pandan Chiffon Cake

Ingredients

(A)
7 egg yolks, at room temperature
230 g caster/superfine white sugar
60 ml corn oil
180 ml coconut milk
120 ml pandan extract (from 5 pandan leaves, see note on how to extract the pandan juice)
250 g cake flour, sifted OR (200 g plain flour + 50 g corn flour)
1 tablespoon baking powder (sifted with the flour)
1/2 teaspoon salt
optional: 1 drop pandan paste (or however green you want it to be)

(B)
7 large egg whites, at room temperature
3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
70 g caster/superfine white sugar

 Method  

  1. Preheat the oven to 170o C and have ready a 10 inch (25 cm) two piece chiffon cake tube pan. (see photo below) DO NOT GREASE.
  2. Using a balloon-whisk (manual), electric beaters or hand-held blender, combine (A) until smooth (lump-free)
  3. In a separate clean and dry bowl, using electric beaters, beat the egg whites from (B) until foamy.  Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat until soft peaks form.  Gradually beat in the caster sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.
  4. With a large rubber spatula or wire whisk, gently fold the egg whites, 1/3 at a time – the first portion to loosen the egg yolk mixture (A) and the next 2 portions, gently folded in to incorporate the air until just combined. DO NOT OVERFOLD. (see note)
  5. Pour the batter into the ungreased tube pan and bake for about 55 to 60 minutes, or until a wooden skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.  (When lightly pressed the cake will spring back).  IMMEDIATELY upon removing the cake from the oven, invert the pan and place on a bottle or flat surface so it is suspended over the counter.  Let the cake cool completely before removing from pan (about 1 1/2 – 2 hours).
  6. To remove the cake from the pan, run a long metal spatula around the inside of the tube pan and center core (for the center, you can use a long skewer).  Invert onto a greased wire rack.

 Notes:

  • To extract the pandan juice, you can either use a powerful electric blender by snipping the pandan leaves into 3cm pieces, blending them with the amount of water then pass it through a muslin cloth. Squeeze out all the extract. If using a pestle and mortar like I did in my first attempt, you can pound the leaf cuts with a little bit of water, add the required amount of water and squeeze through a muslin cloth. Repeat by adding the first strained liquid to the fibrous pulp and squeeze again until you get a concentrated extract. 
  • Always use eggs at room temperature
  • Cream of tartar is used in the whipping of egg whites to stabilize them and allow them to reach maximum volume.
  • Do NOT grease the tube pan as the batter has to cling to the sides of the pan for great cake height.
  • When folding in the egg whites, do so with a portion at a time e.g. in thirds: the first portion of beatened egg whites can be mixed through the egg yolk mixture and then the second and third portions can be folded in gently. Do not overfold but also make sure the egg whites are combined thoroughly. If it isn’t combined properly, then large holes will appear in the chiffon cake (as per the photo above which was my first attempt)
  • Do not open the oven door whilst the cake is baking.
  • IMMEDIATELY invert the tube pan (upside down) once cake is out of the oven. This is to ensure the chiffon cake gets suspended while cooling, thus maintaining that great height.

  

 

 

 

Chiffon Cake 2 piece Tube Pan

notice that there are some large holes in the chiffon cake. This picture was from my first attempt and I subsequently found out that it was due to not folding through the eggwhites thoroughly into the egg yolk batter until just combined (See Notes)

Be the first to like.

You may also like:

3 comments to Cloudy With A Chance of Fluffy Pandan Chiffon Cake…

  • Helena

    i remember eating this cake when i was young….they use to sell it in the asian grocery but they don’t anymore. I was very disappointed but now it looks like i could….one day….in the distant future attempt to make it =)

  • Joanne

    have you experiemented with the pandan chiffon cake recipe again? would you be able to post up the recipe? i love pandan chiffon cake!

  • Mei Sze

    Hi Joanne,

    As requested, here’s my tested recipe version of the pandan chiffon cake. Apologies for responding late. Enjoy! :)