Saturday, March 1, 2008

Guava and White Chocolate Mousse Cake (Shangri-La)


I made this cake for a friend who's birthday is on Feb 29th. Poor her :(. So, she only get to celebrate her real birthday once every four years. I was asked if I can make the birthday cake for her small birthday party and of course I said yes. Who would want to waste any occasion/chance/excuse to make a cake???

What came to my mind instantly at that time was a Blueberry Mousse Cake wrapped with violet striped joconde and gorgeous violet color of the blueberry and creamy white chocolate mousse in the middle, plus blueberru gelee in the middle of the cake as a surprise. But, I guess that's an aweful lot of work to do although this ides of cake has been on top of my "to-experiment" list. So, I changed my direction to another "to-experiment" list, which is guava and white chocolate mousse cake. I had guava mousse cake in a bakery called "The Extraordinary" in San Diego and another one here in Bay Area. I guess the flavor is unusual and that's what make the cake memorable. Besides, I love the color :).

I've been wanting to create the same idea of the cake, but instead of using a butter cake (which is what the two bakeries use), I'm using a light sponge cake instead because I think something as light as mousse should be paired with a light cake too. I've always thought that butter cake is heavy and dense. I tried to find guava concentrate everywhere but had no luck. So, I made my own. Using regular guava nectar, I removed the water by boiling it down until it becomes thick and concentrated. It took a while to get the consistency right. I don't even have the base recipe for white chocolate and guava mousse, so I experimented. That's why it is on "to-experiment" list :).

The white chocolate mousse turned out great although white chocolate is always too sweet for me. Next time, I would reduce the amount of white chocolate or increase the amount of cream. The guava mousse, I'm a little dissapointed. I think I didn't make anough concentrate for the amount of cream that I'm using. So, I added guava extract (which taste anything but guava to me) and it made the mousse taste somewhat artificial to me. It's not strong enough. I wish I had time to re-do the mousse, making the concentrate, etc., but it's just not worth the effort. The mousse tasted great, it's just that I can barely taste the guava. Some say it taste like candy (is it a good thing?). Anyways, that why it's called "experiment" right? I can't wait for the next time I have to remake this. I promise I would taste a lot better or should I say perfect (at least to me)?

I think the most time consuming is making the chocolate decorations. It looks easy not not much, but believe me, chocolate is pain to work with. It needs to be in the right temperature, you have to work fast before it starts to harden up, not to mention the pain of washing all of the equipments. Pheewww.... Chocolate has always been my enemy, but I keep using it for my cakes. It just looks wonderful if it's done in the right way. Practice makes perfect, it may not be right now, but we shall see :)

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