November 27, 2011

Daring Bakers' November 2011 Challenge - Sans Rival

Catherine of Munchie Musings was our November Daring Bakers’ host and she challenged us to make a traditional Filipino dessert – the delicious Sans Rival cake! And for those of us who wanted to try an additional Filipino dessert, Catherine also gave us a bonus recipe for Bibingka which comes from her friend Jun of Jun-blog.

I chose to do the Sans Rival with the traditional flavouring of vanilla and cashew nuts. The details of the recipe can be found here.

The Sans Rival basically consists of two components: meringues plates filled with vanilla flavoured buttercream. Now, this is the third time I tried my hands at making meringues in one or the other form. Maybe it's the fact that meringues are not among my favourite desserts, but I wasn't surprised, when I struggled with what appeared to be a simple recipe. I baked the meringue plates according to the instructions and they turned a lovely brown, but were still quite humid and not as crispy as they should be. I left them to dry for a couple of days but when I wanted to assemble the Sans Rival, they were still gooey. So I baked them again for about an hour at about 100°C leaving the oven door slightly ajar. They turned darker, but in the end they were dry and crisp.

Even though I'd never made buttercream before, the recipe was quite straightforward and I got an excellent result.

The assembled dessert was a huge success at my friend's brunch and at my office - everybody loved it. While I also liked the taste and constancy of the Sans Rival, I found it a bit rich and heavy with all the buttercream. But the cashew nuts in the meringue added a nice contrast.

Thanks for another fun challenge - Catherine!