Sunday, 13 September 2009

Please....I need help with my Heavenly Pink Lemon Cake...

October is Pampered Chef's 'Help Whip Cancer' appeal month. Consultants hold pink fundraising shows or sell fab pink products to raise fund for this worthy cause. More on the pink products the moment I have a bigger fish to fry...

The Pampered Chef's Heavenly Pink Lemon Cake is a pink sponge cake topped with a lemon glacé icing and served with raspberries, and they assure me it will have my October guests asking for seconds.

This is their version...

...and this is mine!!!!

The pampered chef reicpe uses a packet cake mix, which is probably ok in the States, but here in the UK, IMHO they're not as good. Anyway, I much prefer making things from scratch, but I have a problem! My first attempt tasted great without all the boxed additives, but didn't look nearly half as good as the Pampred chef version...not nearly as pink as it should be either .... this version was an 8-8-8 & 4 all in one version. Which with hind sight I should have creamed the butter and sugar first, until as white and as fluffy as possible, THEN add the food colouring before continuing on with the recipe, that will be the basis for my second attempt. I will also change it to a 12-12-12 & 6 egg version for a deeper cake, after all the rectangle baker is a large pan to fill.

My second problem was the icing, the edges were too wobbly, it was too thin in places and when I cut it into pieces the icing stuck to the knife and made it even more messy!!

I now know the icing needs to be a bit thicker in texture and spread a little more evenly on the cake, I need to dip my knife into hot water before attempting to cut the iced cake. But the reviews were good, the cake rose beautifully and the lemony icing complimented the sweet cake and cream topping beautifully. I just need to work on Heavenly Pink Lemon Cake MarkII now...

Inverted baker with cake cooling underneath... what does this do to help the cake?

This is where you my dear readers could step in to help me! I know there are so many amazing bakers out there, full of tips and helpful advice, that I am sure with your help I could turn my second attempt into the final one that has my guests ooohing and ahhhhing and my fellow consultants running to their kitchens to make their own!

Anyone up for the challenge???
Please post any tips or advice in the comments box below, I'll be forever grateful, you will also be doing a little bit towards the 'Help Whip Cancer' appeal as this recipe once perfected will be passed around my fellow pampered chef collegues and we will use it to raise funds during our October fundraising shows, so I'm sure they will want to thank you in advance also!

Cake ready for the oven - it looks a bit pinker than the finished cake?

Cooking it in the rectangle baker ensured an evenly baked cake

This is my recipe so far...I'm happy to change it!.

For the cake
5-6 drops red food colouring
12 oz softened butter
12oz granulated sugar
12oz self raising four
4 level teaspoons baking powder
6 medium sized eggs

For the Glaze
1 lemon
280 g icing sugar
150 ml double or whipping
cream, whipped to form soft peaks

To serve
Canned (or fresh raspberries stood for 30 mins with I tbs castor sugar and 1tsp of vanilla extract)

Preheat oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/Gas 4. Lightly spray Rectangular Baker with sunflower oil and line base with non-stick baking paper; set aside.

For cake
In Classic Batter Bowl beat the sugar and butter until very very pale, almost white using Bamboo Spoon. Add eggs, food colouring, flour and baking powder alternatively until thoroughly mixed using Stainless Steel Whisk. Pour mixture into prepared baker; spread evenly.
Bake for about 40 -45 minutes or until top is deep golden brown and a fine skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean. (Do not underbake.)
Remove baker from oven; invert onto Stackable Cooling Rack. Without removing from baker, let stand until completely cool (about 1½-2 hours).

For the glaze and topping,

Zest 1 lemon using Microplane® Adjustable Grater to measure 1 tablespoon zest using Adjustable Measuring Spoons. Juice 1 lemon using Citrus Press to measure about 3 tablespoons juice. In Small Batter Bowl, stir together icing sugar, lemon zest and enough lemon juice to make a thick, spreadable icing, beating until smooth.
Remove cake from baker; discard lining paper. Spoon icing onto cake; spread carefully and evenly using Large Spreader or back of Classic Scraper. Let stand about 15-20 minutes or until icing is set.
Whip cream in Classic Batter Bowl using Stainless Steel Balloon Whisk.
Attach open star tip to Easy Accent® Decorator; fill with whipped cream. Decorate cake with whipped cream; cut cake into squares to serve. Serve using Mini-Serving Spatula; top each serving with raspberries.


Marie said...

Hi Julie. In order to get a really pristine white cake you will need to make a cake that hasn't got any egg yolks in it. A recipe such as the one in the following link would work really well, and once you add the pink colouring, you'll have a pretty pink colour instead of goldy orange.

Also try adding more icing sugar to the glaze and allowing it to set for several hours before cutting. I think that might help with your icing problem. Hope this helps!

Your cake looks mighty tasty regardless!

Tulip said...

Awh Marie, its not one of those memory foam cakes is it?? Remember my post on the fatless cake and the ribbing I got from the kids??? lol
Is that the only way I'm going to do it,coz that won't go down well at all. Does that mean boxed cakes are yolkless too?

I'll take on board what you say about the icing, I should have left it set for longer and I'll add more icing sugar too!

Sylvie said...

Hi Julie,

I've come straight here after your comment on my blog. I'm not sure how much help I can be as I never really use food colouring in any food unless I dye Easter eggs.

My approach would probably to just stick with a standard yellowish lemon cake and just go really pink on the icing and the berries.

Otherwise the only thing I know is that my friend's 10-year-old made a cake a while ago it was just a Victoria sponge kind of cake and she'd just put plenty of red food colouring in. It was darker than the one in the picture, but definitely pink and didn't really taste of the food colouring either.

Good luck experimenting!

Nicisme said...

Julie - I agree with Marie, you need a recipe without egg yolks and also use the whitest butter you can find, usually unsalted or the French/Danish kind.
I think you are thinking of those horrid angel cakes, which use no butter at all.

As for the icing, definitely needs to be thicker and use a warm knife to cut though, wiping after each slice you make.

I'm hungry for one now as I love lemon!

Lucy said...

Hmm well a while ago on my blog I made a battenberg, and dyed half of that cake mix pink and it turned out a lovely colour! As far as I can remember the recipe was just a normal sponge, with a decent amount of food colouring: the recipe is on my blog anyway. We had to dye the cake a ery bright pink before baking because we knew it fades when it bakes. I hope you manage to make a lovely pink cake, its for such a good cause :)

Belinda Wood said...

This is so timely as only this evening I sat down to think how I might convert the appalling but so pretty sponge cake mix that is the Heavenly Lemon Cake! Before reading your blog I had considered making a Victoria sponge and simply adding the food dye but now have my doubts! However, I wonder if using one of the colouring pastes rather than the liquid might make a more intense colour. I will have a go tomorrow and report back! I'm also thinking about trying it out in the new silicone crown cake pan. Didn't think I was going to like the silicone but I'm now a convert!

Tulip said...

Thanks for all your comments. I am going to give Maire's recipe a go today. I re-read it and realised there was butter in memo foam cake for us then! lol

Nic - thanks for the butter tip, I used ancor butter last time and that is very yellow indeed.

Slyvia & Lucy - I have another consultant who used your method and it wasn't half bad, very dark pink and we will probably use this method with unsalted / french or danish butter (nic's idea) depending on our results with the white cake mix, thanks for the tip.

Belinda - As soon as I am happy with the results I will email you the recipe so you can share with your team!

Jules said...

Sorry it's taken me a while to get back to you. I would say what everyone else has said. Try an eggless recipe with the whitest butter you can find. Wilson do a pink food dye. Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

Hi all, sorry I haven't had the opportunity yet to read everyone else's comments so I may be repeating someone else's suggestions. I followed my traditional recipe 90g SR Flour, 90g caster sugar, 90g soft margarine, 2 medium eggs for the cake recipe, added 4 teaspoons of strawberry food dye and cooked it in the Loaf Pan on 180 degrees for 30 minutes and it came out perfect, could double it for the baker but haven't tried that yet. Then used the strawberry food dye again for the icing - not even crums left.

PS: Love the recipe ideas Tulip - thank you.x