Thursday, April 3, 2014

My 1st chiffon: orange chiffon cake (tang mian)

I haven't done blogging and proper food photograph with my DSLR for very long. So I consider myself a noob still. And I have only started to watermark my photos a few months back. It takes time, but seeing all the others doing it, I'm sure it's needed. If you're reading this and have your view on this, do share with me :)
Now this is what happened. I did a 咸鱼宝 (salted fish bun) as inspired by the drama 食为奴 by TVB, some time back, and as usual, I shared about it on my blog, here. I was quite pleased with it, cos that was one of the very few times my hubby complimented that he liked it. He usually tells me that my food are bland :p  
This is my signature shot, I call it my signature shot, cos all of my closed up cross-section photos are held by my left hand as I capture it with my right hand. I can't handle my DSLR with my left hand.
The photo was featured in a local Malaysian magazine by the name of 号xx报,but they have PSed to remove my watermark and no credits was given back to my blog or the photographer. I am not too bothered about it, cos I'm not selling any of my photos, but I'm writing about it, cos I have been educating people that whenever we follow or copy someone's recipe, we should always always always give credit back to the originator, because the originator did take the extra efforts in making the food and capturing those good photos. Ok, that's lesson of today, shared.
Now, back to my first chiffon cake. I have not taken up the courage of baking a chiffon cake, even though I bake chiffon cupcakes all the time, cos I failed it big big time when I first tried it some time back. But the chiffon trend is always in-the-air, it never seem to subside, and a few of them have done this version and have great reviews over it, naming a few, Sonia, Bernice and Victoria. They are among the few bloggerchefs whom I admire and follow quite closely. I have done my first chiffon using the famous tang mian method which is supposed to yield even softer chiffon. I'm a big chiffon fan, I love chiffon cos it is soft and fluffy, like cotton candy, and it's not so sweet, and I always wonder, what's softer than something which is already so soft. So now I know. Tang mian method does produce a softer and moister chiffon, you wont need to dip it in your coffee or milo when eating it cos it's not that dry or throat-choking (which can be, for some store-bought chiffons).

The skin is a little on the thick side. I'll try a lower baking temp. next.

Despite of that, this is still a very soft one. See how it flops!
Here's the recipe for this orange chiffon cake using the tang mian method (adapted from here)
  • 6 egg white* original recipe uses 5, but I have used 6, cos my eggs were small 
  • 60g superfine flour
  • 55g freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 50g corn oil (I used rice bran oil)
  • 60g brown sugar
  • 1tsp. grated orange zest (for extra fragrance)
  • 6 egg yolk
  • 15g brown sugar (I reduced this from 20g to 15g)
Baked using a 21cm chiffon tube pan
  1. Bring orange juice, oil and 15g sugar to a boil, while continuously stirring, in a shallow pan.
  2. Remove pan from the heat once the liquid starts to boil. Hold the pan handle and swirl the boiled liquid mix for 100 rounds (to chill the liquid).
  3. Pour sifted flour into the liquid mix and immediately mix to ensure the flour gets in contact with the heated liquid, this is the 'tang mian dough'.
  4. Separate egg white and yolk in two separate bowls. Once the tang mian dough has cooled down to a temperature that doesn't scald, pour it into the beaten egg yolk.
  5. Mix with a plastic spatula and this becomes the egg yolk batter. Sit aside for use later (may keep in fridge for better results).
  6. In another bowl, beat egg white till foamy, add in sugar in 3 separate batches until stiff peak forms.
  7. Scoop out 1/3 of the egg white peak and add into the egg yolk batter. When combined evenly, add it back to the remaining egg white peak. Mix in the grated orange zest.
  8. Pour the batter into the chiffon tube pan and bake in a preheated oven at 160deg C for 50min.
  9. Invert cake to cool once out of the oven.
*I baked mine at 170deg C for 45min, at about 20min into baking, the top has already browned and I had to tent an aluminium foil over the top to avoid over-burning, by doing this, I think I may have created a vast temperature drop (while having the oven door opened) which had caused the shrinkage.
**I did add a tbsp. cocoa powder into 2tbsp of final batter and created some marble-prints, but the amount was too little to be notable. Will try more next.  
Personal note: I should try it out at 160degC next.

UPDATED 4/4/2014

I did this chiffon again the very same day in the evening. It worked out by
*baking it at 155deg C for 40min
*egg white was beaten to the very stiff peak (beaten for about 4min)

I added about 2tbsp chopped cranberries to this recipe.

This post is linked to the event, Little Thumbs up organised by Bake For Happy Kids, and My Little Favourite DIY, hosted by Ann of Anncoo Journal at this post. 


  1. Hi Jennifer,

    Me too... I have learned to know my oven and camera a lot more after I started blogging. Yeah, I agree that using a lower temperature setting might help :D


    1. Thanks dear Zoe. It meant a lot to hear from you! I can't wait to try it again with a lower baking temperature.

  2. Hi Jennifer, So glad you join LTU this month. I love orange, especially in soft cake like chiffon. I'm going to bake one soon.
    As for using dslr camera, why not get a tripod stand, as this really helps to take good pictures.

    1. Hi Ann, yea, orange is such a versatile fruit.

      Tripod sounds like a good idea. I shall look into that. Thanks for your suggestion :D

  3. You are inspirational! Did they really used your picture? Cruel!
    Love your blogs and sharings.... Are they any eggless Chiffon?

    1. Eggless chiffon? Hahahaa..not at the moment, but I'm sure anything is possible. It'll just need to take some time. Stay tuned ya.

  4. I have not tried baking chiffon cakes using this method before, sounds interesting and turned out looking so soft and moist…will give it a try!

    1. Yea, it is really fluffy and moist. Try it try it :D


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