This is a delicious, light gateau with a Japonais (almond meringue) base, filled with a smooth chocolate filling made of ganache and swiss meringue. This simple recipe makes seven gateaux of 7in/180mm in diameter.Makes seven gateauxJaponais basesEgg whites – 400gSugar – 300g- Whisk together until light and fluffy, not too stiffSugar – 300gGround almonds – 300gFlour – 50g- Mix together and fold into aboveOn silicon paper, mark out 14 x 7in diameter circles, and place paper on a tray.Using a piping bag with a round 9mm nozzle, pipe out the Japonais mix in a spiral pattern into 7in circles.The mix must completely cover the interior of the circles. Bake at a low temperature (160ºC) until golden. Remove and trim to size, immediately.FillingGanacheCream – 300gButter – 100gGlucose – 100g- Bring to the boil in a panPlain chocolate couverture – 500g (this is best in grated or drop form)- Pour the hot cream and butter over the chocolate and stir until smooth.Swiss MeringueEgg whites – 300gSugar – 300g- Whisk and heat to 75ºCGelatine leaves – 3- Soak in cold water, remove water and melt- Add the gelatine to the hot mix, and then whisk until mixture cools. Fold the Swiss meringue into the warm ganache. If necessary, warm the ganache in the microwave.To construct the gateauxPlace 7 x 7in x 1.75in-high metal rings on a greased tray. Place one base in each ring. Using two-thirds of your filling, cover the bases.Top this with your remaining bases. Use the remaining third of your filling to bring it up to the height of the ring and smooth over. Set in fridge or freezer. When solid, remove from rings, dust top of gateau with cocoa powder and garnish with a piped rosette (or your logo or other chocolate decoration).The sides of the gateaux can be finished with chocolate chips or masked, according to taste.
Bakers have embraced retarder-provers in recent years as the concept has developed dramatically, both in technology and the consistency of results. The latest machines employ sophisticated microprocessors and refrigeration advances, for perfect production in a variety of situations and with almost any type of bread and baked product. The result has been more flexible production runs, the ability to plan for and iron out production bottlenecks, ease of use and control by staff, faster overall production, lower production costs and, above all, improved product quality. The microprocessor revolution has allowed the ability to ‘bank’ temperature and humidity settings to create a smooth and controlled ‘microstep’ transition from cold to warm. This has been a revolution for bakers, allowing a better product than previously achieved with the erratic steps in temperature of older mechanical timers. If there’s one development in retarder-provers that has made the difference to the actual quality of baked product – as distinct from energy savings, staff training, running costs and administration – it’s the sharp and precise control and adjustment of humidity, temperature and airflow.Modular reach-in and roll-in chambers are also a popular development as they enable retarder-provers to be installed almost anywhere. They can also be enlarged easily or even reinstalled elsewhere if production needs change. For smaller facilities, reach-in cabinets offer a cost-effective solution while incorporating all the essential airflow, humidity and temperature precision of modular chambers. The latest retarder-provers also have an adjustable airflow pattern, checked and adjusted at the time of commissioning and whenever layout changes, to suit the working environment and production requirements of the baker. For perfect results, the air should be directed down the side of the chamber and drawn up through the centre. With airflow and environmentally-friendly highly-effective insulation also helping to make retarder-provers more efficient, recent models have seen a marked reduction in compressor capacity. This has meant less noise, lower energy consumption and, for the baker, potential tax rebates under the Climate Change Levy. Advances in microprocessor technology have also meant easier operation. Williams’ models, for example, are said to be as easy to use as ATM cash machines and this is a vital feature in a field where, while expertise in baking is as high as ever, operator training is increasingly expensive. Seven-day timers are now a common feature, allowing the machine to switch automatically from retard to recovery and prove cycle. The most modern controllers also incorporate time-flexible features, such as holding after proving to await staff who are tied up or ovens still busy baking other products. By selecting the right equipment bakers can be confident that they can deliver the best quality dough consistently and achieve the best results for baked products for many trouble-free years.
A £500,000 TV advert shows the making of a full-sized Skoda Fabia car made out of cake. The two companies involved in ingredients sourcing and baking of the main sponge blocks, are Flour Power City Bakery and the Cake Bake Company. Renshaw supplied sugar paste. See British Baker 8 June
Lawrence Watson has been appointed as head of sales and marketing at Rank Hovis, effective 1 September. He is currently sales director at Bowmans Milling in Hitchin, Herts.Watson told British Baker: “I look forward to joining Rank Hovis in September and also to the challenges of the job in this demanding climate.”Prior to Bowmans, Watson worked as management consultant for change management consultancy EQS. He will report to Simon Devereux, director of milling and bakery businesses.
Allspice, also known as Jamaican Pepper, should not be confused with mixed spice. It is a pea-sized, dark brown berry, available whole or ground. As the name suggests, it has a flavour reminiscent of a mixture of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and ginger and, therefore, will go with similar dishes and baked goods.The berries are used in marinades or to flavour vinegars and ground allspice is used in baking and to flavour meats and stews. Added carefully to venison, game and pork pies, it gives a new dimension to the flavour, but it can be overwhelming if too much is added. More commonly, it is used in cakes, biscuits, fruit pies and pumpkin pie.Why not try making a Pecan and Apple Streusel Cake by putting a little allspice in the cake mixture, flavouring the apples with allspice and cinnamon and putting on top of the sponge and sprinkling over an allspice and cinnamon-flavoured pecan streusel mixture. Be careful with the amount of allspice used – roughly half the amount of cinnamon to allspice. As allspice is an ingredient in pumpkin pie, why not try it in pumpkin muffins? Mix pumpkin purée with yogurt and dried apricots or peaches and flavour with allspice.Fiona Burrell, co-author of Leiths Baking Bible, from the Leiths School of Food and Wine
By Max Jenvey of Oxxygen Marketing Partnership, a strategic management agency that focuses on business and brand development within the bakery, foodservice and convenience sectors.Following the festive parties, drinking, late nights and early mornings at this time of year, there is one New Year’s resolution that almost everyone wants to keep: losing those extra Christmas pounds. So how can you, as bakers, retailers and café owners support your customers with their diet resoltuions? Why not focus on a programme of support so consumers can avoid the ’guilt trip’ around eating bakery goods and food-on-the-go.Add healthy and balanced elements to your range, such as oatmeal cookies, yoghurt with cereals, dried fruit and nuts. Customers still want to eat breakfast, lunch and the usual snacks, but with losing weight in mind, they are looking for a more balanced alternative. Our colleagues from market researcher him! say 67% of health-conscious female customers “take away” their lunch or snack and, during their visit, 55% choose a sandwich. Try offering a wholemeal chicken pesto sandwich for instance, which has no fattening mayo.New Year is also a time when everyone starts to think of ways of saving money. So combine your healthy choice offer in great-value meal deals and make your customers aware of them through effective communication, clearly visible from outside your store. Make sure your promotions stand out at key decision points within your store as almost 30% of our customers remember promotions and meal deals from the last time they visited (him! Food-to-go report, 2009). Meal deals can include a wholegrain bar and for those who can bake on-site there’s nothing easier than creating your own: choose nuts, seeds and berries, bound together with brown sugars or honey. To seal the deal, why not include a healthy fruit juice or smoothie, contributing to your customers’ five-a-day!Oxxygen would like to wish you a very happy and safe festive season.
I enjoyed reading Tom Herbert’s report from the Real Bread Conference, but I recently returned from a conference on Quality and Safety of Grain Crops and Foods, in South Africa. There, the availability of wholesome, reasonably-priced bread from plant bakeries using the Chorleywood Bread Process makes the difference between being able to put sufficient food on the table for your family or not.It’s fine for we affluent and well-fed people to pontificate about ’real’ bread versus CBP, but when you are literally on the bread line, the finer points of ’quality’ mean nothing to you and your family. Just getting any form of bread can be a bonus.Stanley P Cauvain, director, BakeTran, and honorary president of the International Association for Cereal Science & Technology
Bakers and manufacturers are being warned of possible egg shortages when new EU legislation takes effect.From January 2012, it will be illegal in EU countries to produce eggs from traditional battery cages. Instead, producers must convert to new enriched cages, which have more space, perches, a scratching area and nest boxes.While British producers are on target, there are serious concerns that other European countries might not meet the deadline.A British Lion egg products spokesman said: “Some 100 million laying hens across Europe will still be in conventional cages when the legislation comes into force.” He said this meant some manufacturers would need to find new, compliant suppliers and there might be a time-lag, which could mean shortages. Caged eggs still account for more than 75% of eggs used in processed products. The change in legislation is likely to have the biggest impact in the egg products sector, where about one-third of eggs are imported. Martin Turton, head of the Biscuit, Cake, Chocolate and Confectionery Group (BCCC), said: “UK food manufacturers are fully aware of their legal requirements around food production. They understand the importance of compliance and the need to put in place the appropriate measures to achieve this.”
Snack manufacturers across Europe are being urged to produce 30g snack packs to help consumers meet dietary guidelines on calorie intake.The European Snack Association (ESA) has announced a change in its approach and now recommends a voluntary move towards a single-portion size of 30g for snacks and nuts an increase of 5g for snacks. The ESA said the 30g size was “in line with dietary recommendations for a snack in between meals and reflects consumption patterns”.Despite the 30g recommendation, the ESA states that bags under 50g would still be classified as single-serve, while snack bags over 50g would be deemed sharing bags.Dr Sabine Seggelke, ESA public affairs & policy director, said: “The change aims to ensure a meaningful, practical and easily understood portion size. Studies in major European markets indicate that the average portion of potato crisps consumed is 30g.”Last year, the FSA launched a consultation, which covered making savoury snacks single packs of 30g or less more widely available; its recommendations on portion sizes are due out later this year as part of the work into saturated fat reduction.
New functional ingredient Fibrim 1270 is targeted at bakers looking to make their products healthier and more cheaply.Solae has launched the soya ingredient a complex blend of insoluble fibre, soluble fibre and protein for a variety of baked goods. The company said that emerging research suggested soya fibre can help support digestive health, heart health, and a lower glycaemic index for foods. Fibrim is also processed for no flavour impact, good water absorption and consistent functionality.Solae Europe MD Reinhart Schmitt said: “Adding this ingredient to your product can lead to significant overall formulation cost savings, while improving the nutritional profile and fibre content of the final product.”