Dubai: Stuck to the pan, leaked from the sides, overmixed, overbaked, collapsed centres, lack or excess of ingredients … the list never ends for baking disasters. But how do you make up for all that time and effort put into your flopped masterpiece? Make a pudding instead!
Personally, I was looking for a hack or two to work around a failed cake when my Editor suggested I could make a pudding base out of it. While I’m still yet to try it, I was intrigued well enough to put my thinking cap on and do a little research.
That being said, here’s how you can transform a failed cake into a fancy treat …
1. Build up on the frosting
The best way to cover up a sunken cake is to load up on the frosting (not too much, just enough). Frosting your cake on its exteriors or just slicing and adding a layer of chocolate frosting will give your cake a whole new look. Top it off with a few slices of fruit and you’ll have a masterpiece on your hands.
Food by Gulf News was also able to get in touch with Chef Luisa Fernanda Caicedo, Executive Chef at Mondoux, Dubai, who said based on her expertise: “One of the easiest ways to salvage a flopped cake is to make a cake sandwich. Cut it in half and use all the ingredients that you were originally going to use as decoration on the outside of the cake as a centre filling instead. This means that you might have a middle layer of frosting, fruits, nuts and any other ingredients that you had in mind. The remainder of the frosting can be used outside and all around. It might not be perfect but if done neatly, no one will know.”
2. Cake bites
Got guests coming over soon and a flopped cake? Try cutting it into tiny pieces, dipping in a sweet chocolate or vanilla sauce, place it on parchment paper and let it cool for the night. These tidbits work like a charm for those who’ve encountered a baking disaster. If it still seems like a task, drizzle a spoonful of chocolate and top it off with a few roasted nuts or fruit.
If you still don’t want to cut it into massive cubes, maybe cut it into smaller cubes and layer it up one by one with frosting and fruits in a parfait glass. Also, whipped cream works.
For Michelin-star chef Massimo Bottura, his perfect dessert tart was due to be sent out when it was dropped. That resulted in him renaming the dish as 'Oops! I’ve dropped the lemon tart!' dessert, which is also a signature dish on the menu. This eventually became an example of a perfectly imperfect dish. When a carefully baked tart falls apart, there is nothing that a little chocolate can’t solve. You could be like Chef Massimo, and go a little crazy with your presentation.
4. Pudding base with biscuits
If you’ve got a large quantity of biscuits lying around and don’t know what to do, grind them into a powder for your pudding base. Pour in a sugary mix of cream cheese at topping, mixed with gelatine and chill it overnight, because tomorrow morning you will have yourself an easy no-bake cheesecake ready to be served.
5. Maybe a biscuit cake would do fine as well
Did you know? With the extra biscuit packets lying around your house, you could just bake a biscuit cake. All you need is a handful of ingredients – biscuits, milk, sugar, chocolate, coffee powder and a little bit of baking soda – and 30 minutes.
Here's the recipe for biscuit cake:
For the cake
- 300 gms biscuits
- 1 cup milk
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ cup cocoa powder
For the icing
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp coffee powder
- ½ cup melted chocolate
- 75 gms butter
1. Grind the biscuits into a fine powder using a food processor.
2. Once done, add the baking soda.
3. Next add the milk in equal measures till it forms a smooth and considerably thick batter.
4. Place butter paper in your baking tray and grease it with a little more butter and cocoa powder.
5. Pour the batter in and bake it at 180C for 30 to 35 minutes.
Note: You can use a skewer to see if the batter comes out clean.
6. As you allow your cake to bake, you can make the icing sugar by mixing sugar, coffee powder, melted chocolate and butter.
7. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes before icing it.
8. Once cooled, cut, serve and enjoy!
6. Cake pops
Another hack to change your cake is to break it and roll it into balls, also known as cake pops. Dip it in frosting or chocolate sauce, roll it in sprinkles and leave it to chill overnight. Maybe you can even add tiny wooden skewers to amp it up.
Dubai-based Nama chocolate founder and creator of The Kakao Guy Mhon Lee also swears by cake pops and he said: “Mash the cake with some cream and add a little flavour (you can go crazy on the mix). Shape into small pops and coat with chocolate or sprinkles. You can also eat it like a cake toast, slice the cake and toast in the oven … it makes for the perfect afternoon tea break snack.”
7. Add in a scoop of ice cream
Who said cake and ice cream don’t go well? If you can manage to pull off an ice cream cake, you are undoubtedly creative with your food. And if you don’t want to change the entire cake, maybe cut a slice, add a scoop of ice cream on the side and drizzle a little bit of chocolate across it. After all, good presentation proves you know what you’re doing.
Baking does come with perks and pitfalls. But you know what they say, mistakes are proof that you are trying. Know of any such ways to fix your flops when it comes to cooking? Tell us about it at firstname.lastname@example.org