Daring Bakers Biscuit Joconde (Gluten-Free)…
Its that time again. And it was a good one.
The January 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Astheroshe of the blog accro. She chose to challenge everyone to make a Biscuit Joconde Imprime to wrap around an Entremets dessert.
What the what? A Biscuit Joconde Imprime is basically a layer of decorative cake that you wrap around the outside of a moulded dessert. Its really cool. Just don’t ask me to pronounce it.
Its surprisingly easy to make and assemble, as long as you have to right equipment. You don’t even need one of those expensive ring molds, any one have a springform pan? Just use that. I also used a strip of acetate to make it easier to unmold. If you don’t have acetate you can always use a blow torch. Yeah, sounds drastic. But no, you just hover the flame over the sides of the mold for a few seconds and it works like a dream. Just don’t hover too long or it turns into a melted nightmare.
I made a Chocolate Pecan Mousse Cake with a Crème Brûlée insert. Because I decided to be all complicated with this one we’re just gonna focus on the biscuit joconde today and perhaps we can chat about the other layers another day.
Joconde Sponge: (Adapted from the Daring Bakers January Challenge)
- 14 tablespoons/ 210ml/ 7oz/ 200g unsalted butter, softened
- 1½ cups plus1½ tablespoons/ 385ml/ 7oz/ 200g Confectioners’ (icing) sugar
- 7 large egg whites – about 7 oz / 200g
- 1¾ cup/ 420ml/ 7¾ oz/ 220g gluten-free flour mix
- Food coloring gel, paste or liquid / Reduce flour mix to 6 oz / 170g. Add 2 oz/ 60 g cocoa powder.
- 1 cup/ 240 ml/ 40z/ 110g finely ground almonds
- ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons/ 150 ml/ 2⅔ oz/ 75g confectioners’ (icing) sugar
- 3 large eggs – about 5⅓ oz/ 150g
- 3 large egg whites – about 3 oz/ 90g
- 2½ teaspoons/ 12½ ml/ ⅓ oz/ 10g white granulated sugar or superfine (caster) sugar
- 2 tablespoons/ 30 ml/ 1oz / 30g unsalted butter, melted
To make the Paste:
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy (use stand mixer with blade, hand held mixer, or by hand)
It may seem curdled to you at this point, but don’t worry, it will come together in the next step.
Sift the flour and cocoa powder together and fold into the butter mixture.
Tint batter with coloring to desired color, if not making cocoa variation.
Now the paste is ready to be used. Spoon it into a piping bag, and pipe it onto a piece of silpat (or parchment if you don’t have silpat, but parchment sometimes crinkles and it shows in the pattern). You can make what ever pattern you want. You don’t have to pipe it either if you want to just spread it on.
Place the piece of silpat in a swiss roll/jelly roll pan and chill in the freezer.
To make the batter:
In a clean mixing bowl whip the egg whites and granulated sugar to firm, glossy peeks. Reserve in a separate clean bowl to use later.
Sift the ground almonds and confectioner’s sugar together. (This can be done into your dirty egg white bowl… or not)
On medium speed, or with a whisk, add the eggs a little at a time. Mix well after each addition. Mix until smooth and light. (If using a stand mixer use blade attachment. If hand held a whisk attachment is fine, or by hand. )
Fold in one third reserved whipped egg whites to the almond mixture to lighten the batter. Fold in remaining whipped egg whites. Do not over mix.
Remove the baking sheet from freezer. Quickly pour the Joconde batter over the design. Spread evenly to completely cover the pattern of the Décor paste.
Bake at 475ºF /250ºC until the joconde bounces back when slightly pressed, approx. 15 minutes. (I baked mine for 5 min so just watch it carefully! Everyone’s oven is different. Remember to reduce the oven temperature by approx. 15°C/60°F if you are using a thermofan oven setting.)
Cool in the pan for approx. 5 min. Do not leave too long, or you will have difficulty removing it from mat.
Flip cooled cake on to a powdered sugared parchment paper. Remove silpat. Cake should be right side up, and pattern showing! (The powdered sugar helps the cake from sticking when cutting.)
Trim the cake of any dark crispy edges. You should have a nice rectangle shape.
Decide how thick you want your “Joconde wrapper”. Traditionally, it is ½ the height of your mold. This is done so more layers of the plated dessert can be shown. However, you can make it the full height.
Once your height is measured, then you can cut the cake into equal strips, of height and length. (Use a very sharp paring knife and ruler.)
Make sure your strips are cut cleanly and ends are cut perfectly straight. Press the cake strips inside of the acetate-lined mold, decorative side facing out. Once wrapped inside the mold, overlap your ends slightly. You want your Joconde to fit very tightly pressed up to the sides of the mold. Then gently push and press the ends to meet together to make a seamless cake. The cake is very flexible so you can push it into place. You can use more than one piece to “wrap “your mold, if one cut piece is not long enough.
I used a different cake as the base but a piece of the joconde would do fine. Now you can fill it with all sorts of delicious combinations.
Mine went as follows… Almond Dacquoise, Chocolate Ganache, Chocolate Mousse, Crème Brûlée insert, more Chocolate Mousse, Chopped Toasted Pecans, Vanilla Pecan Mousse and Lastly a Chocolate Glaze. Yum.
Ok. I know it looks kinda dull here but it was late and I was tired and the family was hovering. I’m sure as food bloggers we can all relate to that.