Sunday, March 30, 2014

Black sesame chiffon cupcakes with banana

It was my mom-in-law's birthday yesterday. Coincidentally, all of MIL's siblings were back to Sandakan for the QingMing festival (tomb-sweeping festival 清明节)and we were going out for a 'reunion' dinner. But my hubby only told me it was MIL's birthday in the afternoon. And he asked if we should get a cake. Yet both him and I knew very well that none present at the dinner would like any cakes from outside. They are all well over their 40s and are all very health and sugar-conscious and probably have stopped eating cakes sold outside for decades. I knew I had to bake something, but weren't sure what I should make cos of time constraint. Finally I decided to bake my favorite chiffon cupcake recipe, which I was very familiar with, but I was gonna double up the recipe and gonna add in black sesame as I felt it's a very 'healthy' ingredient. Hohooo... just right for the health conscious ones.. ay?

I was quite proud of myself that I baked them well and at the same time, I needed to make sure the little fella got his milk and took his late afternoon nap before we went out for dinner. All these were done in 20min when the chiffon cupcakes were baking in the oven. Just wondering if the 'pat on the shoulder' should be given to me, or to my little fella for being a good boy yesterday. Sometimes he takes at least a couple of hours before he finally give in to his nap.

Instead of using black sesame powder (which you can obtain simply by grinding toasted black sesame seeds), I used a sachet black sesame cereal drink powder (see photo below). I made up the black sesame drink with a cup of warm water and chilled it slightly before using it in this recipe. This drink is made up of black soya, black sesame, black rice, walnut, blackcurrants, pine nuts, black mu-er 黑木耳 and 何首乌。 I felt that drinking this drink is better than drinking black sesame alone, cos there are a multitude of other antioxidants and nutrients available from other iron-rich grains, seeds and nuts. Black soya, black mu-er and 何首乌 are also great for hair health. I have also used it to bake soft and fluffy black sesame bun with sunflower seeds. 

Here's the recipe adapted from my favorite chiffon cupcake's recipe
(I doubled up the recipe, which made about 17 cupcakes)
*this recipe doesn't yield sweet cakes, if you like your cakes sweet sweet, do consider topping UP the sugar.
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1tbsp molasses powder
  • 50g grapeseed oil
  • 2 ripe banana (when I doubled up the recipe, I only used 2.5 medium size banana) **
  • 3tbsp black sesame cereal milk drink ** (I pureed the banana with the black sesame cereal drink)
  • 80g sifted cake flour (I used superfine flour)
  • 4 egg white
  • 2-3 tbsp. molasses powder (when I doubled up the recipe, I only used 5tbsp)
Garnish: Raw untoasted organic almond

  1. Preheat oven to 165deg C.
  2. Whisk egg whites till they form soft peak. Gradually add in molasses while continuing to whisk. Keep whisking till egg whites just reach stiff peak.
  3. In another bowl, whisk egg yolks and 1tbsp molasses till thick. Add in oil and black sesame cereal-banana mix. Whisk till combined. Sieve in cake flour. Whisk to combine.
  4. Add egg whites to yolk batter in 3 batches. Fold till just evenly mixed.
  5. Divide the batter between cupcake liners till about 70% full. Tap liner gently against worktop to level batter and get rid of air bubbles. Top with an almond for garnishing purpose.
  6. Bake for 20min. Let cool and serve.
Personal note:
I baked these at 165deg C in my toaster oven for first 10min. Then turn down the temperature to 155deg C and baked for another 10min. Just like the owner of this recipe mentioned, cakes crack after first 10min. 

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