Thursday, June 4, 2009

Mango Mousse Cake With Lime-Hinted Whipped Cream

Mango Mousse Cake
Tell me the truth, my dears, are you sick of cakes yet? Do you want to run into the warm, comforting arms of asparagus and dance the tango with some low-fat yogurt? Do you crave the cool kiss of a cucumber and dream of summer zucchini? Yeah, me too. But not before I make this cake.

Mango Mousse Cake

Because, you see, it's my birthday. Not just "a" birthday, not some #2 or #7, but it's the birthday that heralds a whole new decade, with that pesky "3" as the first digit. Now, I'm not complaining, nor do I want to go back five years or anything. I have many, many blessings in my life (like my wonderful husband, my beautiful loving family, loyal friends who make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, our house, a job I actually like, Wüsthof knives and a shiny new yellow KitchenAid named Lucy - yes, it's true!) and I am the kind of person who likes to look forward, not back. But this whole being 30 thing... I just don't know if I'm exactly ready for it, if that makes any sense. It seems a little bit daunting, like maybe I have to start taking this life thing a little more seriously now, like I can't wear pink or flirt my way out of speeding tickets, like jello shooters aren't cool anymore and I can officially start saying things like "kids these days" while shaking my head at Lady Gaga. Brrr, snap me out of this, someone! Oh, wait, there's still a mango cake. Ahh... all is right with the world.

Mango Mousse Cake

After making birthday cakes for everyone else, you know that I had to make one for myself as well, right? I used my favorite yellow cake recipe from (you guessed it) Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes, which has worked wonderfully for me before. Instead of a tall, triple-tiered 9" cake, I did a shorter double-tiered 9x13 cake, which I think was just perfect (I may be the only person in the world who is indifferent to gigantic cakes). I filled the cake with a thick layer of mango mousse, moistened the layers a little with simple syrup flavored with lime juice and rum, and topped it with lightly-sweetened whipped cream to which I added a little lime zest. It was a heavenly combination - substantial enough for such a substantial date, and yet, light, breezy and summery - just what this 30-year old afraid of growing up would want to eat.

Mango Mousse Cake With Lime-Hinted Whipped Cream
A big thank you to the lovely and talented Helen of Tartelette, who helped me with the ideas and flavors for this cake.

Assembly: Set the first layer of the cake inside a mold (or inside a 9x13 cake pan with straight sides). Brush the layer with half of the lime/rum syrup. Spread the mango mousse on top of the cake layer. Lay the second cake layer on top of the mango mousse. Gently press on the top to distribute the mousse evenly. Brush the top layer with the rest of the lime/rum syrup. Wrap tightly with plastic and refrigerate for two hours or overnight. Unwrap the cake and either unmold (if using a cake mold) or carefully turn it over onto a 10x14" cake board (if using the latter method, the bottom layer will be the top, but it doesn't matter at all). Prepare the whipped cream frosting and frost the cake. Decorate with chocolate shavings and allow to set for at least 3 hours.

Vanilla Buttermilk Cake
(Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes)
3 3/4 cups cake flour
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon plus 2 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 sticks (10 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups plus 1/3 cup buttermilk
5 whole eggs
2 egg yolks
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Butter three 9-inch round cake pans. Line the bottom of each pan with a round of parchment or waxed paper and butter the paper.

Combine the cake flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large mixer bowl. With the mixer on low speed, blend for 30 seconds. Add the butter and 1 1/4 cup of the buttermilk. Mix on low speed briefly to blend; then raise the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.

In a smaller bowl, whisk together the whole eggs, egg yolks, vanilla, and the remaining 1/3 cup buttermilk until well blended. Pour one-third of the egg mixture into the cake batter at a time, folding it in completely after each addition. There will be 9 cups of batter.

Bake for 26 to 28 minutes, or until a cake tester or wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Turn the layers out onto wire racks by placing a rack on top of a pan, inverting it, and lifting off the pan. Peel off the paper liners and let cool completely. When the layers have cooled, place a cardboard cake board on top of a layer, invert again, and lift off the rack. To make the layers easier to handle, wrap them on their boards completely in plastic, so they don’t dry out, and refrigerate them.

Mango mousse (Tartelette)
3 teaspoons powdered gelatin, 3 tablespoon water
8 oz mango puree (I made my own from 2 large mangoes, but next time, I think I will buy it for more concentrated mango flavor)
4 tablespoons sugar
1 cup heavy cream, cold

In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the water and let it soften while you prepare the fruit. In a medium saucepan, bring the mango puree and sugar to a simmer. Remove from the heat and add the softened gelatin. Stir until the gelatin is completely melted. Transfer the fruit puree to a large bowl and let it cool to room temperature.

In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the cream on medium speed until soft peaks form. Fold about 1/3 of the whipped cream into the fruit puree to lighten it up (do not worry about losing air at this point). Carefully fold in the rest of the whipped cream. Use within one hour.

Rum/lime simple syrup

1/3 cup water
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons rum
1 tablespoon lime juice

In a small saucepan set over medium high heat, bring all the ingredients to a simmer until the sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally. Let cool to room temperature.

Stabilized Whipped Cream Frosting
2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 tsp powdered gelatin dissolved in 3 Tb. cold water
grated zest of one lime

Rub the lime zest into the sugar to release the oils. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the cream with the sugar/lime zest until soft peaks. In the meantime, dissolve the gelatin in the microwave for 10 seconds. Or set the cup where the gelatin was in a large saucepan filled with a couple of inches of water, bringing the water to a simmer and waiting for the gelatin to melt. Slowly pour the gelatin in one steady stream over the whipped cream and continue to whip until firm. If you add your gelatin a little cooled and before the whipped cream is still at soft peaks stage, it should not clump on you. Decorate your cake with the whipped cream and return the cake to the refrigerator to chill until you are ready to serve it, at least 3 hours.


Manggy said...

Wooow! Happy birthday to you, Irene! I'm glad you had a great day and are looking forward to the future :)

Happy cook said...

Happy b'day to you. Wow 3 number started.
Well I started 4 this month :-)
I am never fed up with cakes, espcially if there is a celebrations.

Y said...

Happy Birthday to you! I remember when I hit that new age bracket too (not too long ago, mind you! ;P) but there was no mousse cake, darn it!

oneordinaryday said...

Wow. Looks and sounds delicious. And happy birthday to you!

Nutmeg Nanny said...

Happy Birthday!!! If it makes you feel better every year I have a birthday I generally break down in tears because I'm so scared the older I get the more I have to grow up. I still love jello shots, watching Maury (I know...but there is just something about people on that show that make me laugh) and wasting time not acting my age. In only three years will the "3" start showing up first but until then (and after then!) I plan on living my life the way that makes me happy. I have a feeling you will do the same. Happy Birthday and enjoy your super delicious cake. It looks like a great way to celebrate a fantastic day!!!

Elra said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY .... May You Have Many Many More!
Your birthday cake sounds irresistible, perfect cake for a perfect beautiful girl!

Holly H. said...

Happy birthday! And no! Never sick of cakes!

kirsteniteleader said...

I'm usually in the habit of doing birthday dances (you can ask Nicole on that one), but seeing as how I have a fuzzy kitty on my lap, I may have to pass. It's so rare for her to sit on my lap that I'm even passing up a second helping of banana smoothie waiting for me in the kitchen. =)

In any case, Happy Birthday!!!

I love the idea of a "fruity" cake that's light on the fruit. Mango and lime happen to be two of my favorite fruit flavors, and I love how you topped it with a bit of chocolate (I'm assuming that is chocolate).

Nicole also made her own birthday cake. Is this is a new trend? Should I get on the bandwagon and make my own this year? o.~

Many more birthdays to you! I hope you like the 3's.

Sara said...

Happy birthday! My husband just started his 3's a few weeks ago too :). Beautiful cake.

nicole said...

Happy Birthday! I just made my own birthday cake last week too, and everyone thought I was crazy, but I'm glad I'm not the only crazy one out there :). Yours looks delicious!

Mermaid Sweets said...

Happy Birthday, I always make my own cakes, and wow, this sure looks like an amazing one. A lawyer that likes her job, huh, what's the secret?

Peter M said...

Happy Birthday Irene and I know how you feel...30 was 'reflective" but now it's all uphill...I'm 41 and never better.

Got any yummy cake left for me/

Melissa said...

Happy Birthday! Trust me, your 30s are wonderful, for so many reasons. But I sympathize - I turned 34 last week and I was less than thrilled. These things sneak up on you a bit!

Bunny said...

Happy Birthday, you picked a wonderful cake to make to celebrate it! Your just a pup just, now don't start taking life to seriouly! LOL!!

Deeba @Passionate About Baking said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY...this is a gorgeous cake & well worth the effort. Helen is such a wonderful person & I love her creativity. This is a great cake; I'm gonna try it one day...YUM!

the caked crusader said...

Don't worry about being 30 (happy birthday, by the way!) worry about typing that you're sick of cakes!!!!! Until you see the error of your ways you will remain in my thoughts.....!

Eileen said...

Happy 30th! No, I will never be tired of cake. And this one sounds incredible.

Ash said...

This looks scrumptious!

Kevin said...

That cake looks really good!

Ingrid said...

Nope, not tired of cake and certainly not your lovely ones!

Happy 30th! LOL, sorry had to say it!

Helene said...

Happy belated birthday! Great cake.

Jude said...

I don't think it's possible for anyone to get sick of cakes. At least not anyone I know.
Happy 30th birthday!

Lauren said...

I think we may be the exact same age... June 4th, right? Spooky! Lovely cake and happy belated!

Irene said...

May 28th, but my husband is June 9th, so you're right in between! :) Gemini rule.