Cempedak Chiffon Cake

Light and fluffy, full of cempedak flavour. A big hit! 

My parents were never really a huge fan of rich and dense cakes and cupcakes piled high with frosting, but the cake they really loved was chiffon cakes. Chiffon cakes are light, airy cakes that do take a bit more effort, but they taste spectacular. The addition of one of their favourite tropical local fruits, cempedak, makes this cake even tastier. 

This cake is filled with cempedak flavour, is a little moister that usual chiffon cakes, but is still light and airy. 

The egg yolks, oil, sugar and dry ingredients as well as puréed cempedak flesh are whisked together while the room temperature egg whites are whisked to medium peaks. Medium peaks form when they droop slightly when the beater is lifted. Stiff peaks are when they stand up straight when the beater is lifted. Medium peaks are better in chiffon cakes as the egg whites will rise to their full potential when they are in the oven. It also reduces the chances of over beating the egg whites. 

Fold 1/3 of the whipped egg whites and sugar into the egg yolk mixture at a time. The first time is to lighten the yolk mixture so that more egg whites can be added. Fold the egg whites in gently so that you would not deflate them. Fold the remaining 2/3 of the egg whites 1/3 at a time until just combined. A little white streak in the batter is ok. 

Pour the cake batter into a ungreased tube pan with a removable base. A greased or non-stick pan will cause your cake to be flat and dense! With an ungreased pan, it gives the cake a rougher surface that helps it to climb up the sides of the pan easily, giving it a beautiful rise. (I learnt it the hard way, trust me.) Rotate the pan halfway through baking and cover loosely with foil if the top gets too brown. But act fast because the cake starts deflating right when you open the oven door because the temperature of the oven drops! 

Once the cake has been baked, immediately remove it from the oven and overturn it onto a cooling rack. Cooling the cake as it is overturned reduces the chances of your cake deflating as it cools. Let it cool until it reaches room temperature, before loosening the sides and bottom of the pan with a knife and slicing a large piece for yourself.

The cempedak smell will waft through your entire house as it is baking and everyone would gather for a slice. Because chiffon cakes are so soft and light, you can have as large a slice as you like without feeling full. Isn't that awesome!  If you don't enjoy the flavour of cempedak or it is not readily available to you, you can replace the puréed cempedak flesh with durian flesh or any other fruit purée. 

Cempedak chiffon cake 
Loosely adapted from http://www.yearofthedurian.com/2013/03/recipe-durian-chiffon-cake.html"

6 yolks
30g sugar
60g oil
45ml milk (about 3 tablespoons) 
1/4 + 1/8 tsp salt

B: 3/4 Cempedak flesh (reduce to make it less moist)

C: 150g top flour
1/2 + 1/4 tsp baking powder

6 egg whites 
150g sugar
1/8 tsp cream of tartar 

1. Preheat oven to 170 degree C.
2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together ingredients A until combined. Stir in ingredient B. 
3. Sift together ingredients B, then add into (2) and mix well. Set aside for later use.
4. In another large mixing bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks. Add in sugar and cream of tartar and continue to beat until medium peaks form. 
5. Take 1/3 of the meringue and mix with (3) until well mixed. Gradually add in remaining meringue, and stir until just combined.
6. Transfer batter into chiffon pan (8-9 inch pan) and bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes.
7. Invert the cake immediately after taking out from oven, and cool on rack completely before turning out from mold.

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