I was thinking “to or not to” have a special post for the 6th b’day of this little space of mine. Recently, when I was reading something, I happened to see this quote “grief can take care of itself, but to get the full value of joy, you must have somebody to share it with” – Mark Twain. When I’ve you to share my joy, why hesitate, right? So here I’m with a post to celebrate the 6th b’day of my blog :)
It’s a coincidence that MariasMenu and myself share b’day in the same month. The only reason I can come up with… is usually when my b’day’s come, I’ll go on a reflection mode to think about what I’ve done with my life so far, whether I made good use of all the blessings that I received. Most of the time, I feel guilty about having not done enough. This reminds me of a particular passage from The Bible. This passage was read at the beginning of every academic year during my college days. It talks about how a master gives his servants a number of talents and how they use it. Some of the servants worked hard and they multiplied what they had, while one didnt do anything about it. So whatever little talent he had, was taken from him and was given to the others who worked hard. This passage always acts as a wake up call for me. So that’s how I started this space and I’d like to believe I’m doing something productive. At least it helped me develop two new skills, writing and photography, though “I’ve miles to go before I sleep” in those two areas.
I dont want to take up more of your time with my jabbering, but I want to say one more thing. I want you to know that I treasure each and every comment and mail that you send me. Initially, when I started receiving comments/mails I was surprised! Because, you often see that even the people you love dearly, take you for granted. So when I received mails from people whom I havent even met, I doubted for a min, is it real? It’s easy for you to try the recipes from here and carry on with your life, even without saying a hello to me. If the recipe worked well, you could come back again and keep trying. On the other hand, if it didnt work, you could very well say “whoever said these internet things ever worked”? But you didnt take the easy route, you came back to me… sometimes saying thank you, sometimes asking me doubts and sometimes just to ask how I’m doing! You were kind enough to spare a few minutes for me. At times you even stood up for me, when some people left a bad comment or remark, I was touched!
In the beginning, I didnt know how to respond when people said nice things about my blog. Seeing my dilemma, one of my good friends Ancy told me… “Maria, whatever compliments you get, accept it gracefully. You many not need it now, but there comes a time when these very words will brighten up your day. Store it safely in a corner of your heart”. Her words came true. There were times in my life, when I found it difficult to smile or be happy, but your comments and mails took over that job and I should say they did a very good job at it :)
I’d like to share with you the recipe of this beautiful pastry to celebrate this occasion. I was saving this recipe to post for a special occasion and I think the time has come. It’s one of my fav pastries of all the time. When I made it for the first time, I was really happy because this was something that I always wanted to make at home and to taste just like my fav bakery’s pastry. It did!
Before going to the recipe…. Thank you for being there with us in good and bad times, it feels great to know that you are out there.
I strongly recommend you to read the notes section before proceeding with the recipe.
- Plain flour (maida) – ¾ cup
- Powdered sugar – 1 cup + 1 tbsp
- Eggs – 4 @ room temp
- Cornflour – 1 tbsp
- Baking powder – 1½ tsp, leveled
- Vanilla essence – 1½ tsp
- Water – 1 tbsp
- Whipping cream – 1½ cups
- Icing sugar – 2-3 tbsp
- Canned pineapple – 1 tin of 570 gm
- Sugar – ⅓-1/2 cup
- Chopped cashew – ¾ – 1 cup
- To make the sponge:
- Preheat the oven @ 180 C, 10 mins before baking.
- Sieve the plain flour with baking powder and cornflour. Separate the white and yolks of the eggs.
- Beat the egg yolks with powdered sugar, essence and water, till it is thick. Beat the egg whites till it form stiff peaks. Fold the egg whites into the yolk mixture, alternately with the flour mixture, very carefully and without allowing the bubbles to subside.
- Grease and line two, 7 inch round baking tins. Pour the batter into it. Level the cake and bake immediately in the preheated oven for 15-18 mins.. Remove the cake from the tin and invert on a greased butter paper, while its still hot. Let the cake cool completely.
- To make the whipping cream icing:
- Whip the cream and add the icing sugar gradually. Do a taste test to see the sweetness of the icing. Whip the cream till soft peaks form.
- To make the praline:
- Heat sugar in a non stick pan with 1-2 tbsp water, when it start caramelises, add chopped nuts. Make sure the nuts are coated well with the caramel. Pour the praline onto a baking/parchment paper. Let it cool. Crush them using a rolling pin.
- Assembling the sponge/cake:
- Drain the juice from the pineapple tin and keep aside. Cut the pineapple into small pieces. Use the syrup to moisten the cake.
- If you want a taller cake, cut each sponge into two layers. Moisten each layer with the pineapple syrup. Spread icing on each layer. Sprinkle chopped pineapple pieces and crushed praline. Place another cake/sponge layer on top of this and repeat this process, till all the layers are done.
- Spread the icing on the top and sides of the cake. Put the praline on the sides and top. Garnish with pineapple pieces and cream. Keep in the fridge for 2-3 hours. Serve chilled.