“Singapore’s All-Time-Favourite Durian Cake”
If you have not come across durian, let me tell you briefly about it. Durian is a seasonal tropical fruit in Southeast Asia which we regard it as the “King of Fruit“. Durian has this very distinctive and penetrating scent which you either love it, or disgust by it. Though you might not like its scent, but tasting it in the palate could be entirely different experience and feeling to you. I don’t know… Perhaps it was just me, finding it rather disturbing to smell, but irresistibly delicious to taste! You know what I mean, if you have the same sentiment.
Texture of a good quality durian flesh should be felt dry on your finger tip when lightly pressed, with soft and creamy texture as a whole. Some durians taste completely sweet and some are sweet but with a hint of bitterness in it, all depending on its types. I preferred the later. If it is to use for cake filling, it’s better to choose the sweeter type (with more yellowish flesh *refer to pic on right) instead of bitter-sweet (paler flesh) as sweeter flesh matches the theme of sweet bakes. :)
Different type of durian varies in its pricing. Get the better ones since it’s for own eating pleasure. I got the mid-level kind which is D24, imported from Malaysia, it costs about S$10 per kilogramme. You need only about 1 kg of durian (total weight includes husk) for the cake filling in my recipe. Musang King would be even better, if pricing is not an issue.
It is surely much more economical to make your own durian cake than the store-bought. If it’s not wrong, I think 1kg of store-bought durian cake probably costs S$40 – S$70.
I loved durian, real fresh fruit, especially. So, only pure durian flesh would be used in my durian cake. No adding of extra sugar, cream or artificial flavoring at all.
Durian from Malaysia taste more aromatic and delicious with more intensive flavour than those from Thailand. I reckonned using Malaysia durian for the cake. Pretty sure Thai durian wouldn’t make up to the same standard.
We loved durians, but hardly eat them with our bare hands which supposed be the way it is, worrying of the strong after-taste odour on the hands afterwards. Hence, making durian into cake is the best alternative for us to enjoy this favourite fruit without what would be considered a hassle. And so, I’ll be the one who does all the job.
Anyway, it’s worth all the effort, to indulge in such an exotic sweet treat. I, too, get to satisfy my sweet tooth, with both my favourites, the durian and cake.
This homemade durian cake was deceivingly good even though it might not looked as good as it does in my pictures. Well, it’s the effort that counts.
One more point to bring up here, I did not blend the durian flesh. Simply use a fork to mash it. I liked my cake filling to be with more texture. Well if you prefer smoother and more creamy mouthfeel, blend the durian flesh, then. It would give you a more cream-like consistency, as desired.
Yields 8″/ 9″ cake (about 800 – 900 grams per whole cake)
250 grams of sponge cake premix (Optima Ready Mix from Bake King brand)
3 medium eggs (about 200gram)
50ml water (about 1/4 small cup)
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
6 – 8 seeds of fresh and sweet durian, seeded and mashed into durian paste with a fork (or blender, for smoother cream-like texture)
200ml of whipped cream (get the ready-to-use instant whipped cream or click for my Homemade Whipped Cream Recipe)
Lightly greased (with olive oil or butter) 8″ or 9” round baking pan
1) Extract durian flesh and place in a medium container. Use a fork to briefly mash and stir it till paste-like texture. Cover durian paste and keep refrigerator, reserve for later.
2) Pre-heat oven for 15 minutes, set temperature to 180°C (top and bottom heat on).
3) Break eggs into large mixing bowl. Then, add in cake premix flour, water and vanilla essence. Beat mixture with electrical mixer at medium speed (No. 2 or 3), for 10 minutes. Texture of the end-result of mixture (after beaten) should look light fluffy and creamy with some resistance.
3) Pour cake batter into the greased baking pan. Place baking pan at middle rack. Bake for 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out completely clean. The top of the cake baked should appear slightly bloated/ rounded instead of flat surfaced.
4) Allow cake to completely cool in the pan on wire rack, for about an hour, before removing from pan.
5) In the meantime, you may whip the fresh cream. Store whipped cream in the refrigerator before use.
6) When cake is cooled, gently slice it into 3 layers, horizontally. For easy spreading of whipped cream on the sponge cake, you may also remove the very top brown (baked) layer of the cake, with knife or gently peel with bare hand. Then, place the bottom layer of cake gently on a flat surface/ flat cake board, spread a thick layer of durian filling evenly on the layer of cake. Leave some space around the edges. Repeat the same for second layer. Then, top the most top (slightly rounded surfaced) layer of cake on the second layer cake. Lightly press the layers for a better hold of the cake in 3 tiers.
7) Frosting: Spread whipped cream on the entire cake. Decorate it, as wished.
Chill decorated cake in the refrigerator till ready to serve.
Actually, I thought my sponge cake was slightly too thick as I used a 7.5″ round pan, even though I didn’t mind having thick layers as I loved the softness of my sponge cake which goes so well with its durian filling, but what I’ll suggest, if you do prefer thinner layers, is to use a bigger baking pan to bake the sponge cake, for instances, a 9″ or 10″ baking pan, so that you cake will be baked wider but thinner (in term of height) in whole. Alternatively, use a smaller, 7″ pan, to bake a thick cake, and then, slice it into 4 – 5 thin layers. I think making thin layers would create different mouthfeel of the durian cake, in a positive manner.
A slice of creamy durian cake counts about 450kcal. I have already used only pure durian and reduced sugar amount in the sponge cake. Anyway, do enjoy the durian cake, if you are one of the durian lovers, like us.
Though durian is delicious and irresistable, but eat it in moderation. It is not only about keeping your waistline in shape (as durian is high GI fruit), it’s also to avoid increasing of body heat, as Chinese believes that durian is a ‘heaty‘ fruit which might cause heatiness in our body if over-indulging. So, to balance up body coolness, drink more water, herbal tea or eat some mangosteens (which it, on contrary, regards as cooling fruit). I believed in drinking salted water right after eating, for more effective cooling result.
P/S: My durian cake was ended up a big hit to my family, and even colleagues. Brought to work today to share with some close colleagues, and we rushed to eat it so that the office pantry would not smelt too strong (laughing).. They were pretty impressed and well-commented the cake.. Oishi! :D
Tips: This is an express & hassle free cake baking. So, go get the sponge cake pre-mix off the shelves. I’ve gotten it from NTUC Fairprice Extra (at their baking section).