Laura Foo's Pandan Chiffon Cake

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By Team Studio Kitchen

This delightful Pandan Chiffon Cake recipe comes courtesy of the gracious Laura Foo, champion of Great Australian Bake Off season Six. This is her fail-safe choice for impromptu gatherings—after all, a baking competition winner can't arrive empty-handed. This cake is not just feather-light; it's a crowd-pleaser that vanishes effortlessly. Thank you @lozfozbakes 

Invented in the mid 20th century, Chiffon cake is a type of light and fluffy cake that falls into the sponge cake category. It is known for its airy texture and moist crumb. Chiffon cakes are characterised by the use of vegetable oil instead of butter, which contributes to their lightness. The other key ingredient that sets chiffon cake apart is the use of whipped egg whites, which are folded into the batter to incorporate air and create a fluffy texture.

The basic ingredients in a chiffon cake include flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, egg yolks, vegetable oil, water, and flavourings like vanilla extract and in this case pandan essence. The egg whites are beaten until stiff peaks form, and they are then gently folded into the rest of the batter. This folding process is crucial to maintain the cake's light and airy structure.

Chiffon cakes are typically baked in an angel food cake pan or bundt pan, allowing for even baking and uniform rising. Once baked, the cake is cooled upside down to prevent it from collapsing.

* cake flour (Make your own combining 150g  plain flour and 50g of corn flour)

Time

4

hour

0

minutes

Degree of Difficulty

Medium

Save

0

Portions

12
servings

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Ingredients

Servings

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120g egg yolk (aprox 6 large egg yolks), room temperature
315g egg white (approximately 9 large egg whites), room temperature
100g caster sugar (A)
100g caster sugar (B)
1tsp cream of tartar
115g canola or vegetable oil (neutral flavour)
140g coconut milk
200g cake flour **
2tsp baking powder
½tsp fine sea salt
1tbsp pandan essence (Laura prefers Koepoe Koepoe)
0tsp vanilla essence (optional)

SPECIALITY EQUIPMENT

 24cm chiffon cake tin with removable bottom
1

Preheat oven to 160℃ fan forced. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt together, and set aside.

 

2

In a large bowl of a stand mixer, place egg yolks and caster sugar (A). Whisk together on medium speed until pale and tripled in volume (about 6 mins), scraping down the bowl occasionally to ensure no sugar is trapped at the bottom.

 

3

Meanwhile, mix the coconut milk, oil, pandan essence and vanilla (if using) together in a measuring jug and whisk together to combine. With the mixer still running, slowly pour this mixture into the egg yolks, and continue to whisk until combined. It will deflate slightly but this is normal.

 

4

Sift the flour mixture into the bowl, then mix on low until a smooth, thick batter forms with no lumps. Set this aside, transferring to separate large bowl if you don’t have another stand mixer bowl.

 

5

Clean and dry the whisk and bowl well before starting on whisking the egg whites. Place egg whites and cream of tartar into the bowl and whisk on high until soft peaks form. Gradually add spoonfuls of caster sugar (B), whisking constantly, until a stiff meringue is formed with a firm peak. This should take about 4-5 minutes in total.

 

6

Add a third of the meringue into the egg yolk mix using a flexible spatula to loosen the mixture. Then, fold the rest of the meringue VERY gently until no white streaks remain, trying to keep as much of the air in as possible.

 

7

This might sound counter-intuitive, but to remove some of the larger air bubbles, tap the bowl on the bench 2-3 times before proceeding. Then, treat it like a delicate baby.

 

8

Gently coax the batter into your UNGREASED chiffon cake tin, being very careful to preserve as much air as possible (don’t pour the batter into your tin from a height. Using the back of a spoon or an offset spatula, smooth down the surface of the cake before baking.

 

9

Bake for 20 mins on the lowest oven rack possible, then lower the temperature to 150℃ and continue baking for another 30-35 minutes, checking every 10 min or so to see if it’s done. If the cake is starting to crack or brown too quickly, cover with some foil and return to the heat. Once baked, a skewer should come out clean when inserted into the cake.

 

10

Carefully remove cake from the oven but leave it in the tin. Allow it to cool upside down, propped up on the tin’s little feet, for at least 3 hours until completely cool. If your tin doesn’t have little feet, prop it up on a drinking glass over a wire rack to allow for maximum airflow. Be patient, it will be worth it, I promise!

 

11

To remove your cake from the tin, use your fingers to press very gently around the edge of the cake to tease it away from the sides of the tin. You may need to run a butter knife around the edge of the tin to loosen it. Do this decisively and without hesitation to ensure you don’t accidentally catch the edge of the cake and tear it (but if you do, it will still be delicious, just a little uneven).

 

12

Slice using a serrated knife and enjoy, and try not to demolish in one sitting. Or do, I’m not here to judge.

 

1
0 hours 0 minutes

Preheat oven to 160℃ fan forced. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt together, and set aside.

2
0 hours 0 minutes

In a large bowl of a stand mixer, place egg yolks and caster sugar (A). Whisk together on medium speed until pale and tripled in volume (about 6 mins), scraping down the bowl occasionally to ensure no sugar is trapped at the bottom.

3
0 hours 0 minutes

Meanwhile, mix the coconut milk, oil, pandan essence and vanilla (if using) together in a measuring jug and whisk together to combine. With the mixer still running, slowly pour this mixture into the egg yolks, and continue to whisk until combined. It will deflate slightly but this is normal.

4
0 hours 0 minutes

Sift the flour mixture into the bowl, then mix on low until a smooth, thick batter forms with no lumps. Set this aside, transferring to separate large bowl if you don’t have another stand mixer bowl.

5
0 hours 0 minutes

Clean and dry the whisk and bowl well before starting on whisking the egg whites. Place egg whites and cream of tartar into the bowl and whisk on high until soft peaks form. Gradually add spoonfuls of caster sugar (B), whisking constantly, until a stiff meringue is formed with a firm peak. This should take about 4-5 minutes in total.

6
0 hours 0 minutes

Add a third of the meringue into the egg yolk mix using a flexible spatula to loosen the mixture. Then, fold the rest of the meringue VERY gently until no white streaks remain, trying to keep as much of the air in as possible.

7
0 hours 0 minutes

This might sound counter-intuitive, but to remove some of the larger air bubbles, tap the bowl on the bench 2-3 times before proceeding. Then, treat it like a delicate baby.

8
0 hours 0 minutes

Gently coax the batter into your UNGREASED chiffon cake tin, being very careful to preserve as much air as possible (don’t pour the batter into your tin from a height. Using the back of a spoon or an offset spatula, smooth down the surface of the cake before baking.

9
0 hours 0 minutes

Bake for 20 mins on the lowest oven rack possible, then lower the temperature to 150℃ and continue baking for another 30-35 minutes, checking every 10 min or so to see if it’s done. If the cake is starting to crack or brown too quickly, cover with some foil and return to the heat. Once baked, a skewer should come out clean when inserted into the cake.

10
0 hours 0 minutes

Carefully remove cake from the oven but leave it in the tin. Allow it to cool upside down, propped up on the tin’s little feet, for at least 3 hours until completely cool. If your tin doesn’t have little feet, prop it up on a drinking glass over a wire rack to allow for maximum airflow. Be patient, it will be worth it, I promise!

11
0 hours 0 minutes

To remove your cake from the tin, use your fingers to press very gently around the edge of the cake to tease it away from the sides of the tin. You may need to run a butter knife around the edge of the tin to loosen it. Do this decisively and without hesitation to ensure you don’t accidentally catch the edge of the cake and tear it (but if you do, it will still be delicious, just a little uneven).

12
0 hours 0 minutes

Slice using a serrated knife and enjoy, and try not to demolish in one sitting. Or do, I’m not here to judge.