Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother’s Day with a Tres Leches Cake


Today, May 8, 2011, is Mother’s Day and I’ll be making a Tres Leches Cake topped with whipped cream and strawberries. It is also a family favorite, so it wasn’t difficult to select a recipe from my recipe books for this special day.

I’ve posted the recipe for Tres Leches Cake previously. Click HERE for blog post.

TRES LECHES CAKE

Adapted by Carmen of Baking is my Zen

This dessert is actually Nicaraguan, but has been widely (or should I say, wildly!) adopted by all Cubans with a sweet tooth! Three different kinds of milk (thus the Tres Leches name) are used in the preparation. Fresh, evaporated and condensed. This version serves 8 to 10 portions.

CAKE:1 cup sugar     (3/4 cup for egg yolks, 1/4 cup for egg whites)
5 large eggs, separated
1/3 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cream of tartar

MILK SYRUP:1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
1 cup sweetened condensed milk    (I use 1 (14 oz) can)
1 cup heavy (or whipping) cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp light rum  (I use 4 Tablespoons White Bacardi Rum)

MERINGUE: (I use Whipped Cream instead)1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
3 egg whites

FRUIT TOPPING: (I top with cut strawberries)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit. Generously butter a 13 x 9-inch baking dish.

CAKE: Beat 3/4 cup sugar and the egg yolks until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes (use paddle attachment). Fold in the milk, vanilla, flour and baking powder.

Beat the egg whites to soft peaks (use wisk attachment), adding the cream of tartar after 20 seconds. Gradually add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and continue beating until the whites are glossy and firm, but not dry. Gently fold the whites into the yolk mixture. Pour this batter into the buttered baking dish.

Bake the cake until it feels firm and an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 40 to 50 minutes. Let the cake cool completely on a wire rack. Unmold unto a large, deep platter. Pierce the cake all over with a fork, taking care to not tear it up.

MILK SYRUP: Combine the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, cream, vanilla and rum in a mixing bowl. Whisk until well blended. Pour the syrup over the cake, spooning the overflow back on top, until it is all absorbed.

MERINGUE: Place 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of the sugar in a heavy saucepan with 1/4 cup water. Cover and cook over high heat for 2 minutes. Uncover pan and cook the sugar to the soft ball stage, 239oF on a candy thermometer, 6 to 8 minutes.

Meanwhile beat the egg whites to soft peaks with the cream of tartar. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of the sugar and continue beating to stiff peaks. Pour the boiling sugar syrup in a thin stream into the stiff egg whites and continue beating until the mixture is cool to the touch. The hot syrup "cooks" the egg whites.

Using a wet spatula, spread the top and sides of the cake with a thick layer of the meringue. Refrigerate the cake for at least 2 hours before serving.

Not low-cal by any means, but well worth the effort!

CARMEN’S VARIATION AND NOTES:
For the milk syrup, I use 4 Tablespoons of rum.
My cake bakes in my oven for 30 minutes.
Whipped cream is used instead of meringue topping. See recipe below.
After adding the whipped cream, I top with cut strawberries. It is a great complement to the cake.

WHIPPED CREAM

From book CAKELOVE ~ Warren Brown

2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Place the mixing bowl and wire whip attachment from a standing mixer in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to chill.

2. Sift the confectioners’ sugar to remove any lumps.

3. Combine all of the ingredients in the chilled bowl and whip on medium to medium-high speed for 2-3 minutes, or until medium peaks form.

4. Remove the bowl and lightly whip by hand with a wisk to the desired stiffness.

ENJOY!


HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY TO ALL MOMS!

And, a special “I LOVE YOU” to my mom!


Peace in baking,

Carmen

Baking is my Zen…sweet nibbles for the soul

2 comments:

Lara said...

wow what a recipe! well done!

Baking is my Zen...sweet nibbles for the soul said...

Thanks Lara! It is one of my family's favorite.

Carmen

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