Tag Archives: chocolate

Cake Bites: what they are and how to make them

Friends of mine are probably already tired of me yapping away about my newly created Cake Bites. It’s only been one week since I officially started making them, but I’ll be honest and say I’ve been over-the-top promoting them. I just can’t help it! It’s the first product that I’ve created that is really taking off. And why wouldn’t they? Bite-size cakes, who doesn’t want that?

I was actually really surprised to find that no one else is making these yet. Instead, stores and websites are currently obsessed with cake pops. As cute as they are, I find that the popsicle stick useless and a waste of resources. If you’re going to have a bite-size dessert, shouldn’t it really just be bite-sized? As in, pop it in your mouth and that’s it?

I compare my Cake Bites to donut holes. I’m not a fan of donuts but I do love donut holes. Doesn’t make too much sense, right? I think it’s the ease of eating them, how you can (in most cases) control how many (really I mean little) you are eating, and how much more glaze you get compared to a donut bite :)

I really wanted to make them look like truffles too, like the chocolate. As you may or may not know, I used to be pretty obsessed with Godiva chocolates. I also fell in love with making chocolate candies after attending a 2-day chocolate making class in Torrance. I joined these two ideas together – donuts and truffles – to create Cake Bites.

I originally wanted to make them perfectly sphered, but I had bought these macaron molds from Amazon that ended up being way too small for macarons. I baked cake in the macaron molds, and it turned out great. Not completely circular, but good enough.

So fill the molds with the batter of your choosing and bake. Be careful not to overbake since they are so small. Once I overbaked mine and even though they were super easy to pop out of the molds that way, it did not taste good. Underbaking will also make it extremely difficult to pop the bites out. Some playing around with the oven might be necessary to find the exact minutes these babies need to be in there.

Let them cool down before touching them. If baked correctly, most of them should pop out if you give it a little shake upside down. Otherwise they should be easily peeled out. If they’re cracking while doing that, it’s probably just a bit underbaked. If that’s the case just invert the silicone mold (yay for silicone molds!) and de-pan that way. It’s still super easy, just a bit more time consuming.

Then, on half the shells, pipe just the amount of icing needed to adhere the two sides together. Find it’s other half (one of my favorite steps of macaron making!) and sandwich together.

Throw them in the freezer for a little bit so they are easier to handle. Meanwhile prepare the shavings and icings. Shaving chocolate is very, very easy. Literally take a vegetable peeler and start peeling away at a block of chocolate. If you can warm up the block (maybe in a warm oven for a few minutes), you’ll get much nicer shavings and ribbons.

You want to get your icing as soft as you can. In my case I just popped it in the microwave for about 20 seconds. After the now sandwiches are just a bit hard, cover them in icing. Use the method that is easiest for you. Throw them in then fish them out, or cover them with your hands, or drizzle the icing over them (though this method produces a lot of waste).

It’s important to completely cover the sides of the sandwich so the end product can resemble a sphere. If the sides aren’t completely covered you’ll be able to see the two layers, in which cake your Cake Bites will look a lot more like Whoppie Pies. Toss the covered sandwiches in your chocolate shavings and cover completely… and you’re done! After working with them the Cake Bites will be very soft and ready to eat. I store them in the fridge until serving because the chocolate will melt in the heat.

Make variations by using different icings and shavings

I bought little baggies from Joann’s and that’s how I’ve been serving them. Cute, no? :)

Easy, cute and delicious. Good luck!

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Banana Cream Tart

A few months ago, a couple friends and I spent the day in SF just for… well, eats. We woke up at 9am (way too early for a Saturday morning), got in the car and drove an hour to the SF Flea Market for this glorious sandwich:

Porchetta Sandwich from Roti Roli

But in good foodies-fashion, after something savory we needed something sweet. The savory truffle macaron (yea, truffle macaron – you read that right) that we tried at the Ferry Building just couldn’t quite be classified as dessert in our books. After much searching and googling, we ended up at Tartine Bakery.

We ordered a few items, none of which were very memorable except for their Banana Cream Tart. What I remembered most about is was that it cost $6.50 for a tart of 4″ in diameter :( But I must admit that was rather beautiful, pretty good and sparked my own Banana Cream Tart creation.

I needed to make a few changes though to fit my liking. My main problem with the Tartine treat was that the shell was incredibly hard. I’m not sure if this was on purpose or if the tart shells were old, but to say that I was afraid for the utensils wouldn’t be a gross exaggeration. They used a napolean-like pastry dough for the shell instead traditionally using something like shortbread. It had a nice texture since pastry dough is very flakey, but I didn’t think the use of it in a tart was necessary. In addition, I found their banana custard too liquidy when I tend to like my custard nice and thick… and, well, fatty :)

The last change I made in my version was leaving their dollop of caramel syrup out. My heavier custard and sweeter whipped cream made this ingredient excessive. I did like how Tartine lined the insides of their tarts with dark chocolate though – a trick bakeries use to increase the shell’s shelf life – so I followed through with that step. It does give the pastry a nice, unexpectant touch.

one thin layer of chocolate, banana custard, whipped cream, chocolate shavings and powdered sugar

So I was out $6.50 but stumbling across this creation was well worth the money, the trip and even the few extra pounds I’ve put on since :)

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