Saturday, November 14, 2009

Farewell to Fay - White Gold Passion Genoise

On Friday, Fay retired to a life of freedom and cruises - we can't wait to hear what Fay does next!

In the usual fashion, I made Fay a cake. She wanted me to make her something new, so I chose the White Gold Passion Genoise from Rose Levy Beranbaum's Heavenly Cakes. It consists of a genoise soaked with passionfruit syrup, filled with passionfruit curd, then topped with a white chocolate cream cheese frosting.

Before I go further, a word from our sponsor - you can now buy the BloggerAid Cook Book online here. Laws of the Kitchen has contributed a recipe, once again using passionfruit, so check it and all the other fabulous recipes out! All proceeds go to the World Food Program's School Meals Program.

Here is Fay proudly displaying her cake, even before she knew what sort it was or had tasted it. Love ya Fay!

This cake is very involved as far as steps go, so I made the genoise and the curd one night and the syrup and the frosting on the night of assembly. The genoise worked out great - I loved Rose's tips, like combining some of the batter with the melted butter before incorporating the butter into the batter; I found that this prevented an oily separated pool forming at the bottom of the bowl. I also liked her idea of sifting the flour into the batter instead of just plonking some in before folding - it helped a lot in the combination process.

Here's a peek inside the cake, showing the layers:

The sweetness of the frosting is cut by the sharpness of the passionfruit, and together it makes a wonderful combination. None was left over, even though I cut the cake into tiny pieces for it to go around as far as possible.

The recipe is as follows:


3 tablespoons clarified butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup cake flour
1/2 cup minus one tablespoon cornflour

Preheat your oven to 175 degrees Celsius and grease, flour and line a 9" cake pan with 2" sides.

Put the clarified butter in a heatproof bowl and warm it until almost hot, then stir in the vanilla. Cover the bowl and keep the butter warm.

In a heatproof bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together. Put the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and heat, stirring constantly, until lukewarm.

Remove the bowl from the heat and whisk the egg mixture with a stand mixer for 5 minutes or until the mixture has quadrupled in volume.

Whisk together 1 cup of the beaten eggs with the clarified butter mixture. Set aside.

Sift half the flour over the rest of the egg mixture and fold in with a spatula. Once it has been combined, fold in the remaining flour and finally the butter mixture.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 20-20 minutes or until the cake is golden and has started to pull away from the sides of the pan. Unmould onto a wire rack sprayed with cooking oil immediately, then, leaving the bottom pan lining in place, turn the cake right side up and leave to cool completely.


3 egg yolks

1/2 cup sugar
42g butter
1/2 cup passionfruit pulp
pinch of salt

Whisk the egg yolks, sugar and butter in a saucepan until well combined. Whisk in 5 tablespoons of passionfruit puree and the salt. Cook the mixture on medium-low heat, stirring continuously, until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of your spoon. Remove the curd from the heat and strain into a heatproof bowl, then stir in the remaining passionfruit. Allow the curd to cool at room temperature for 30 minutes before covering and refrigerating until cool.


1 vanilla bean

3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons passionfruit pulp

Put the sugar into a small saucepan, and scrape in the vanilla beans from the split vanilla bean pod, and rub them into the sugar. Add the pod to the pan, and stir in 1/2 cup passionfruit pulp. Bring the mixture to a rolling boil, stirring continuously, then cover it and remove it from the heat and allow it to cool completely. Transfer it to a jug and stir in the rest of the passionfruit pulp.

White Chocolate Frosting

100g white chocolate

2 x 50g butter
1 egg
1 egg yolk
170g cream cheese
1/2 tablespoon creme fraiche or sour cream (I used natural set yoghurt)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a baine marie, melt the white chocolate and 50g butter. Whisk in the egg and yolk, and continue whisking and heating the mixture until it reaches 60 degrees Celsius. Remove the mixture from the heat, and allow it to cool to ~20 degrees Celsius. To speed it up, you may refrigerate the mixture for around 20 minutes. (I had to - my kitchen temperature was 26 degrees Celsius!)

In a stand mixer bowl, whisk the cream cheese and 50g butter until smooth, then beat in the creme fraiche (or sour cream). Gradually beat in the white chocolate mixture and vanilla, then increase the mixer speed and beat until light and creamy.


Using a serrated knife, remove the top and bottom crusts of the cake, and cut it in half. Brush the top and bottom of each half with the syrup.

Place one half of the cake onto a cardboard cake round. Spread it with 3/4 cup passionfruit curd, and place the other half of the cake on top. Frost the top and sides of the cake with the frosting, swirling the top, and place the cake in the fridge for an hour to set the frosting. Put small dabs of the remaining passionfruit curd on top of the frosting and swirl to combine.


I recommend buying Rose's book if you are into making cakes - it is very beautiful and packed with wonderful recipes and tips.


Palidor said...

What a gorgeous cake! I wish I could torte my cakes as well as you. Even using a Wilton cake slicer, I'm not very good at it!

Simply Life said...

Oh that cake looks wonderful!

Gloria said...

I love youra cakes Cakelaw really enjoy!! look so delicious and you are sooo nice to make this cake to your friend, xxx gloria

Jennifer said...

What a beautiful cake and a wonderful way to honor Fay!!!!!

Barbara said...

Heavenly Cakes is the bible! That and anything Maida Heatter has written.
Love your cake. The passion fruit filling must be wonderful. Because I love it so I can't imagine why I haven't thought to use it as a filling before. Thanks for the great tip!

Anonymous said...

What a delicious sounding special cake. A great way to send off a coworker!

How neat that you contributed a recipe to the Blogger Aid cookbook!

Pam said...

Oh your cake looks so amazing...could you pass me a piece please...Fay looks very happy and is one lucky gal!


natalia said...

Ciao ! How wonderful this cake looks !! I really wish I was working with you !!! We do not have so many passion fruits what could I use ??

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

POassionfruit curd cake no less? Passionfruit is my favourite curd Cakelaw and this sounds divine! :D

Brenda said...

Looks heavenly! Well done!!

Gretchen Noelle said...

I got Rose's cookbook not long ago in the mail! I have looked it over a number of times and just don't know where to begin! I SO WISH I had passionfruit at my fingertips all the time. I need to go back below the ecuator!!!!!!!

Happy cook said...

I love that filling from the cake, looks beautiful and so yumm.
Love the seasame street cup cakes too from the earlier post.

Clivia said...

Passionfruit and white chocolate - yum. Lovely cake!
Congrats on the cookbook entry!

Y said...

Mmm I like the sound of that cake. I've just ordered the book too, so can't wait to get stuck in :)

Nutmeg Nanny said...

Wow this cake sounds amazing. I love all the flavors...yum!

Lisa said...

OMG..this cake looks and sounds outrageously good! I own a copy of RLB's Cake Bible, and I don't recall this cake. Apparently I didn't look hard I'm pumped! The passion fruit filling sounds amazing. I'll be making a white cake sometime next week, and I was thinking of using a white nutella filling, but now I may frost it with white nutella and fill it with passion fruit curd. I hope mine turns out as gorgeous as yours :)

Lisa said...

Oh dang, no wonder I didn't see it in The Cake's in the Heavenly Cakes book, which I do NOT own. Shoot! Hoever, I'm glad you posted the recipe, although I stink at metric conversions and my scale is off