January 30, 2013

Rolls Nice: Japanese Roll Cake

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Japanese Roll Cake Party
I was wondering if cake decorating term is only applied to cookies and layered cakes. When I saw a Greentea Japanese Roll Cake from Rachmah's blog post, I have a thought the term could be enlarged with decorating roll cakes somewhere under that particular category.

I mean, what's the difference? Although decorating roll cakes doesn't need sugarpaste, royal icing or buttercream, it surely needs imagination like a 'normal' cake decorating needs.

JRC-100sand1000s cream nutella filling

It involves drawing and painting with batter. It involves colours and techniques. 

And there is skills. 

JRC-cream and raspberry white chocolate filling

Honestly, I have never met a challenge like it before and it took me by surprise that it is not as easy as it looks. I failed one of my roll cake, cracked and split when I was trying to roll it. I suspect, I was too adamant to put fresh strawberries in the centre and perhaps way too heavy for the sponge to take them all. I learned my lesson.

Frustasi! Setiap abis diberi motif dan masuk freezer, pasti baking papernya kusut! *jambak rambut. Tuh kan kusut. Tapi yg ini gampang ngelupasinnya.

Another tricky thing is to use the right baking paper. Everytime I put coloured batter on to make decorations, the moment it came out of the freezer, the baking paper will be wrinkled. And that means, the final product will not be as smooth as I want it.

Some girls in the group said to use silpat, but my my silpat is way too big for the measurement required on the recipe. I don't know how they did it, but one time around, I decided not to grease the roll tin. The result was just the same, if not only to satisfy my observation on what to overcome with those two techniques. Nah, I'm still not able to make my roll cakes looking perfectly as smooth as I want to. 

There is one thing I have forgotten, a result of not reading the recipe properly. It's that I have to put a pattern paper under the baking paper, so that the baking paper is not on contact with the bottom of the tin. I must try that again one day.

Well, are you feeling challenged now? Here is the recipe.

JRC-Cream and Nutella filling

Japanese Roll Cake (JRC)
Source: Junko Book (Hop on this website to see what the book look like. It includes step-by-step too. I wonder where to get it in New Zealand)
Modified by Rachmah Setyawati

Batter I
4 egg yolks
40g caster sugar
40cc vegetable oil
60cc water
80g plain flour

Batter for Decorations
60g egg whites
15g caster sugar
10g cornflour
Batter II
160-175g egg whites
0,5g salt
50g caster sugar
1tsp lime juice
15g cornflour

1 Tbs Blueberry Paste or dark purple food coloring (I omit this somehow, using different ideas of decorations and colours)

Filling :
Fresh cream, whipped


Batter I: Beat egg yolks and sugar until fluffy, drizzle in oil a little at a time while mixing well and then continued with water until all combined. Fold in flour and mix well. Set aside.

Batter for Decorations: Beat egg whites with half of the sugar until foamy, add in sugar a little at a time while still whisking, until all the sugar is used and it forms soft peak. Fold in cornflour, mix well until the batter appears thicken but not hard peak. Set aside.

Get 5-6 tablespoons of Batter I and spoon into the Batter for Decorations, mix well. Divide into two portions. For the first portion of batter, divide into three colours: light pink, dark pink, and light yellow, following the drawing below, provided by Rachmah Setyawati.
Decorations drawing by Rachmah Setyawati

Prepare 2 roll tins measured 20X20X5cm. Prepare your paper which is already sketched with your desired patterns and place it on the bottom of the tin. Grease this paper with a little butter and put the baking paper over. So the paper with patterns is covered by baking paper. Do not grease your baking paper.

Take a little light pink colour, spoon it on to the love pattern. Then get the dark pink one, spoon onto the rest of the love pattern which is not decorated yet. Repeat the process for the dot patterns.

After all patterns are filled and done, put the tin into the freezer until the batter is frozen and dry. Then pour in the Batter I.

You can create another pattern as much as you want. So with this recipe, it will yield two sponge roll cakes.

Preheat the oven to 165C-175C.

Batter IIMake this while freezing the patterns. Beat the egg whites with half of the sugar until foamy, add in the rest of the sugar a little at a time while whisking. Add in lime juice, keep whisking until soft peak. Fold in cornflour, whisk well until thicken. 
Filling: cream chantilly, white raspberry chocolate, and raspberry powder. Cream and Nutella filling.

Combine Batter I and Batter II until incorporated well enough, no egg whites streaks, that is. Divide into two portions. Drop blueberry paste or food colouring as to your liking into one of the portions, mix well. 

Remove the tin out of the freezer, then pour in the blueberry coloured batter onto the love-patterned tin, and the the other portion into the second tin.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until well cooked. Peel off the paper and let it cool.

When the cake is cooled, spread the filling over the non-patterned side, roll well and wrap with baking paper. Let it be hardened in the freezer for a little while and serve.

JRC-Strawberry filling

My Review:
Although I still bump into difficulties of making it right, I definitely will try again and let my children design the patterns.

So yeah. We had had a good time with Japanese Roll Cake. Afternoon tea feels so cute with these little rolls. Do ahead with yours, and let me know what you come up with!

January 29, 2013

January Sweetness of New Zealand Round-Up

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There are sweet reasons of Summer in New Zealand. One of them is that we get to eat as so much delicious as many different flavour of ice cream available everywhere in every corner of this Kiwi land. The option is enormous. It's just like pointing your finger at one kind of ingredients, and voila! the next thing you know there it is churning in your ice cream machine, ready to end your Summer meal.

That is proven by some fellow Kiwi bloggers who had sent me entries of ice cream as to beat Summer heat for Sweet New Zealand. Mairi has her Cardamom Ice Cream, then Sue with her Roasted Apricot Gelato, Lesley with her Creamy Orange Ice Blocks, and I am here with my Black Dorris Plum Ice Cream that I make every year using our homegrown plums and my recipe here. Last but not least, to tell the truth how hot New Zealand is at the moment, there is Pineapple, Coconut and Mint Ice Pops from Alli to quench the thirst of beach babes. Yay!

Black Dorris Plum Ice Cream

Some cool and delicious fruity desserts are marching sweetly for Summer feast below! Some lovely cookies and fruity cakes are on the menu as well. And that delicious Lemon and Mascarpone Meringue Roll that Monique baked to name a few is really something I'd die for. I just love that combination of meringue and lemon curd. There are also beautiful biscuits and cake slices to accompany coffee or tea as you may will see on an array of goodies below, so take your pick.

There is always a way to celebrate this fruity season and everyone has got her best entries served. I am just so happy to receive and enjoy every one of them. Thank you to all my fellow Kiwi bloggers for your lovely goodies. Enjoy your Summer.


Strawberry Mini Loaves
by Arfi of HomeMades by Arfi

Indonesian Caramel Honeycomb Cake
by Arfi of HomeMadeS by Arfi

Rhubarb, Lemon and Cream Cheese Cake
by Monica of Delissimon

Gluten-Free Bake Apricot Madeira Cake
by Nicola of Homegrown Kitchen
Roasted Apricot Gelato
by Sue of Couscous and Consciousness

Ricotta with Blueberries and Honey
by Alessandra of Alessandra Zecchini

Creamy Orange Ice Blocks
by Lesley of Eat, etc.

Carrot Cake
by Genie of Bunny.Eat.Design.

Pecan and Almond Biscotti
by Julie of Domestic Executive
Cardamom Ice Cream
by Mairi of Toast NZ

January 21, 2013

Comfort Food: Model Palembang

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I confess that I have been feeling homesick lately. It's my third year I haven't been back to my home country, that means, I have been missing all of local delicacies Indonesia has got to offer. It ranges from mangoes or rambutan to gado-gado, from tofu fritters to Nasi Uduk, from fresh young coconut juice to ice kacang, and I even miss Indonesian's very own butter: Blue Band.

Even if I can make many of these delicacies I have been missing, still it is not the same as sitting down with friends by the road talking about nothing while waiting for someone to make food for us. Not that I am sure that I still can eat street food, given that my body has been accustomed to Kiwi food, but at least, I can be with good companies and practice my mother tongue.

Palembang had been my home for my high school and college years and I miss its specific food. Like this one I have made these couple of days. I ate nothing more than Model Palembang.

Model Palembang2

Model Palembang is simply fish dumplings stuffed with firm tofu and served in seafood broth with bits and pieces of little morsels.

Model Palembang

In daily life, Palembangese often have model for breakfast as another option to the famous empek-empek. It isn't quite as filling as lontong sayur (rice cakes served with vegetable curry) as your breakfast, but it is of course on the little more soupy side.

Making model is no other simpler than using food processor. Finely minced fish fillet is what we need here. I choose to use a cube of chicken stock as to enhance the flavour of the fish dough itself, so when it is made into balls and cooked in a boiling water, they'll remain flavoursome.

The seafood stock is a simple fresh mixture of prawn heads and skins, fish bones, leeks, a head of garlic and a large brown onion, left overnight, and strained before using it to make the soup. I like making soup fresh from scratch rather than using cube stocks or powder. I have found it much more delicious than ready-made one. 

Many of Indonesian traditional food use morsels as the side dish and garnish. Perhaps, you can omit them, but to me, they are as important as the main dish itself.

Here is what I do. And within this bowl, my homesickness is evaporated. For now.

Model Palembang recipe-HomeMadeS by Arfi

January 18, 2013

Sweet NZ: Caramel Honeycomb Cake

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Bolu Sarang Semut. That's we, Indonesians, call it. It is indeed simply a sweet caramel cake that has a unique texture resembling honeycomb or a slice of termite mound--well; the latest perhaps a bit exaggerating. But perhaps, that's where the name is coming from.

Gluten-Free Indonesian Caramel Cake3

I made this once I saw Anh showed us her breakfast on instagram that appeared on my Facebook news feed. It was a cake made by her husband (how lucky she was!), and it looked alike this caramel cake we used to eat when we were kids. Anh apparently has hit the homesickness in me which has been lingering for such a long time.

Gluten-Free Indonesian Caramel Cake2

One positive thing about it is that my children get to taste what my childhood was like. While enjoying this cake, I take them back to my old times. So they know.

My second entry for Sweet New Zealand.

Gluten-Free Indonesian Caramel Cake

January 03, 2013

Sweet NZ: An Opening Year of Sweets

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January 2013. Happy New Year! This is my first post of the year, dedicated for Sweet New Zealand and for those who read my posts from year to year and for those who have just discovered me. I am so grateful to have you all who have followed me throughout the years, even I haven't really written much.

My first attempt of baking this year of 2013 is gluten-free Strawberry Mini Loaves. Since we pick strawberries a small bucket every three days from our garden, I am using fresh strawberries.  I especially made it on an effort to explore my SLR camera again after more than half years depending on my iPad camera. Long story short.

Yea, I'm a happy person. *pulling my lips from ear to ear.

Now, the result of being a happy citizen of the world, here comes Strawberry Mini Loaves from the happy oven. As a happy host for January Sweet NZ, originated by our happy and lovely New Zealand very own food writer, Alessandra Zecchini. Looking at the links, it seems I am the regular host for January when many of NZ food bloggers are away for vacations. But I'm not to lose hope that many yummy sweet entries will be sent my way.

There are simple rules to join in. I just write it shorter:

  1. You are a Kiwi blogger, living here in NZ or overseas.
  2. You are a sweet tooth and love sweets...kidding. You can send me your recipes of desserts/cakes/biscuits/anything sweet that you produce from your own kitchen.
  3. Send me your sweets to arfi.binstedATgmailDOTcom no later than 28 January 2013 with details of your name, blog name and link plus post link. A photo is also a mandatory, not exceeded than 500kb please.
In the meantime, here's my entry.

Strawberry Mini Loaves

Strawberry Mini Loaves2

Not difficult to make these. They're in fact are muffins baked in mini loaves. Nah, I don't trick you. Just want to make it different for a change, because I'm submitting it on my next photography article, written with Tika for Rasa Indonesia online magazine. It is published in Bahasa Indonesia.

21/2 cups gluten-free flour
1/2 cup almond meal
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
a handful strawberries, hulled and diced if they are large; keep them as is if they are thumbprint size
1/2 cup caster sugar (more if you like it sweeter)
1 vanilla bean, halved and scrapped out the seeds
1 lemon, grated
2 eggs, loosely whisked
1/2 cup rice bran oil
1 cup soy milk/rice milk/almond milk
extra strawberries, sliced for topping and mixed with a little raw sugar or demerara sugar

Preheat the oven to 190C. Prepare your 8 muffin tins or 8 small loaf tins by greasing or lining them with paper cup. I just grease and flour the loaves.

Combine flour, almond meal, baking powder, baking soda and sugar in a large bowl. Mix well. Add in diced strawberries, stir well. Set aside. In another bowl, prepare the wet ingredients. Mix vanilla seeds, eggs, grated lemon, oil and milk together until well blended. Pour into the dry ingredients while mixing with wide metal spoon until just incorporated. 

Strawberry Mini Loaves

Spoon into each muffin/mini loaf tin. Top with sliced sugared strawberries. Bake for 20 minutes or until cooked through. Leave in the tin for 5 minutes before take them out of the tin and put them on the wire rack to cool completely. Serve dusted with icing sugar. Makes 8.