For those of you who have watched Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations episode on spain, or for those of you who have eaten/read up on the menu at El bulli, you probably know what I'm talking about.
I was at El bulli a month ago and I had the black sesame spongecake with miso on top. Frankly speaking, it was one of the most amazing things Ive ever eaten. To sum it up, it was very intensely flavored, and one of the fluffiest things Ive eaten, hence, Ive spent the last month trying to replicate the same cake at El Bulli, here are my reports.
Recipe 1: Playing with fire and water instant chocolate cake
This was the first recipe I tried. I got very inconsistent results, probably because it was the first time I made the cake, and I was trying to figure out optimal settings for my microwave. I did manage to get some very good results, texture wise(fluffy), but I found that the condition of the cakes deteriorated very quickly over time, as the cakes began to harden very quickly. I think part of the reason is due to the microwaving of egg yolks in the recipe.
Recipe 2: Recipe taken from 'the Cooks book' by user on L2O blog
"This is the one I use from the Cooks Book ( it's Adria's recipe)
75g shelled green Pistachio
75g Granulated sugar
20g plain flour
Process the above then strain.
Fill siphon then charge and chill for 2 hours.
cut slats in plastic cups, half fill and cook for 45 seconds in the microwave."
I got much more consistent results with this recipe, I cant remember much about it, the amount of cakes you can make according to the recipe is very little. I dont think it was as fluffy as the first recipe, but it held up alot better after resting.
Recipe 3: Recipe from onespoonquenelle
"300g egg whites, 6og, almond flour, 60g yogurt powder, 70g sugar, 20g flour. blend everything, strain, fill canister, add 2 cartridges, fill cups just under half, cook for 30-40 seconds depending on size of cup."
This was the latest recipe I tried, and I think it should, in theory, be the closest to the recipe Albert Adria uses in the no reservations episode, because he mentions "almond flour"(basically ground almonds) in the video. I found the cake to be fluffy at the edges, but still fairly dense in the center, and very moist(bad). I did, however, use 60g of Green tea powder instead of yoghurt,and I passed it through a very fine sieve before charging it in a siphon, Im not sure if I removed much almond from the mix by doing this.
That being said, here are my overall observations:
First off, I do not have the specifications of my microwave, it is pretty old, but I found that using it on Medium-high setting for 30-40 seconds seem to yield the best result
2nd, The plastic cup warped every single time, I'm not entirely sure if this is safe for consumption.
3rd, the top of the spongecake(the exposed side of the cup), was usually slightly wet when I removed it from the oven, but the rest of the cake was cooked.
4th, cutting slits at the bottom of the cup before filling it with batter makes sure that the cake does not steam and get too moist
5th, none of the cakes had the fluffy-ness of the one I had at El Bulli, I know it is unreasonable to expect the same kind of texture, but I can tell that there is a very definitive difference in the consistency of the cake, for all recipes. Its alot denser.
Has anyone experimented with any of the above recipes, or tried aerating cake batter by charging it in a siphon?
Edited by mis, 13 September 2009 - 08:19 AM.