How to make a successful Génoise Cake...

Discussion in 'Cakes' started by J13, Aug 23, 2019.

  1. J13

    J13 Well-Known Member

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    My husband’s fave cake, but though minimalist in terms of ingredients, I’ve found it somewhat tricky and problematic. I’d like some help. Also, some clarification....

    (1) How do you fold in the flour so that it’s incorporated, but doesn’t deflate the fluffed-up egg batter...or end up sinking to the bottom (which seems to happen to me each and every time)?

    (2) Some recipes say to warm the eggs and sugar over a brain-marie while whisking it by hand for, like 10 minutes. Then switch it over to the mixer...others say just use the mixer. Is there any real benefit to warming the eggs/sugar? Because I sure would like to skip that step and the risk of accidentally cooking the eggs.

    (3) Some recipes fold melted butter into the batter before pouring into the baking pan, while others say that a true Génoise sponge is only eggs, sugar and flour.

    So. What works and what doesn’t to create a successful Génoise sponge cake?
     
    J13, Aug 23, 2019
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  2. J13

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    This is a classic genoise and yes it has butter. But most home bakers lack the skill to add the butter, so don't add it.

    Baker’s Percentages
    Cake flour 100%
    Eggs 162%
    Sugar 100%
    Butter 10%
    Total baker’s percentages 372.00%


    A processional bakery will use different formula. They will add invert sugar (trimoline) for as a natural preservative and to add moisture; add potato starch, finer crumb because fine bakeries will not use bleached cake flour; butter is also used for flavor.

    INGREDIENT Baker’s Percentages
    Eggs 162.00
    Sugar 90.50
    Trimoline 11.00
    Pastry flour 81.00
    Potato starch 19.00
    Melted butter 10.00
    Total baker’s percentages 373.50


    Scale all ingredients by weight

    Don't sift the flour until you are ready to use it.

    Combine the whole eggs with the sugar and warm them over a Bain Marie. You want to dissolve the sugar EDIT--but you do not want this really hot!

    Whip on medium high to ribbon stage. This usually takes a good 8 - 10 minutes

    Ribbon stage is when there is a significant increase in volume (it’s in possible to measure, although many recipes will say triple volume); and the egg mixture will thicken enough that when you lift the beaters out of the bowl it will flow from the beaters and sit on top of the mixture for a few seconds before disappearing into the bowl.

    Do not add any flavorings until the eggs are ribboned. I've seen recipes where a bunch of crap is added before the eggs are whipped--just don't.

    if you are going to use butter, take a cup of the eggs out, whisk the butter into the portion you removed, then set is aside and fold it in after the flour is folded into the rest of the eggs.

    Sift flour into egg mixture and gently fold in with a large balloon whisk.



    Look for Rose Levy Beranbaum's Genoise or Flo Braker's recipe. Beranbaum uses Wondra flour, which is a pre-cooked instant flour. I'm sure I have Beranbaum's recipe if you can't locate it online.



    How to use a balloon whisk to fold

    https://www.epicurious.com/expert-advice/balloon-whisk-fold-cake-batter-egg-whites-article
     
    Norcalbaker59, Aug 23, 2019
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  3. J13

    J13 Well-Known Member

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    This is great! Thank you. Wondra, huh? I wouldn't have thought of using that, but if it will help keep the flour from sinking to the bottom... And I have seen and achieved the ribbon stage, so I know what that looks like. And, fortunately for me, my husband likes the cake au natural. No flavorings.

    I think the butter is probably a must if it is "au natural" as the flavor then becomes, well, butter-y. :D So, I'll attempt that.
     
    J13, Aug 23, 2019
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    Norcalbaker59 likes this.
  4. J13

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Yes Wondra is an odd choice, but whatever works for her. Let me know how you’re cake goes.
     
    Norcalbaker59, Aug 24, 2019
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