TORTA PARADISO (PARADISE CAKE)

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Happy in Cyprus
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TORTA PARADISO (PARADISE CAKE)

Post by Happy in Cyprus » Sun Jun 23, 2019 3:07 am

I came across this recipe in a newspaper article on Easter food. Author Skye McAlpine described the cake as: “slices of cloudlike, lemony sponge layered with ambrosial, honey-scented whipped cream are close to heaven on a plate”.

Sounded tempting and easy enough to bake, but using the recipe as given proved an absolute disaster because crucial information relating to making the whipped cream was not provided. I was new to making whipped cream and soon discovered there is an art form to making it without curdling it with warm honey on the one hand, or turning it into butter on the other. I learned the hard way and wasted loads of rather expensive double cream. So I’ve included a number of tips further down to prevent you making the same mistakes. I’ve also tweaked and improved the recipe in a number of ways.

Amounts below serves 8-10 people. Takes 50 mins prep + 50 mins to cook.

INGREDIENTS

Sponge

220 gms SR flour
80 gms cornflour
1½ tsp baking powder
300 gms butter (salted OK), softened and chopped into pieces + extra for greasing the baking tin
300 gms icing sugar + extra for dusting the finished cake
1 tsp vanilla extract (or essence)
Zest of 4 lemons
Pinch of salt
6 egg yolks
3 eggs whole
60 gms caster sugar

Whipped cream filling

300 ml ‘Langley Farm’ Double Cream (48% fat) from Kolios, far and away the best double cream available in Cyprus. Second best, but very acceptable, is Lanitis Thick Cream (40% fat) available some supermarkets, including Alfa Mega.
90 gms Icing sugar
½ tsp Cream of Tartar
4 tsp concentrated lemon essence (I used ‘Rayners’ brand from Alfa Mega)

METHOD

Pre-heat the oven to 180C fan (200C non-fan). Grease a Springform 23 cm circular cake tin with butter and lightly dust with flour. Cut and set to one side a piece of aluminium foil big enough to amply cover the cake tin. Zest 4 lemons and set to one side. Separate out 6 egg yolks and set to one side.

In a large mixing bowl (but not the one which attaches to your electric mixer) combine the flour, cornflour and baking powder.

In the electric mixer bowl beat together the butter, icing sugar, vanilla extract, lemon zest and pinch of salt, until creamy and smooth. Little by little add the 6 separated egg yolks. Then add one third (approx.) of the dry ingredients.

In a third bowl, whisk together the whole eggs and caster sugar until light and lemony in colour and trebled in volume. Fold this fluffy mix into the buttery cake batter, then fold in the rest of the dry ingredients.

Pour the mix into the cake tin and bake on the middle or lower third shelf of the over for 25 mins. By this time the top of the cake should be lightly browned. Remove the cake from the oven with care as it will still be visibly mobile inside the tin. Cover the tin with the oversize foil (tricky as the tin will be hot) to stop the cake from browning further. Return cake to the oven without delay. Bake for a further 25-30 mins until the cake passes the tester/skewer ‘clean’ test when inserted in the middle of the cake.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10-15 mins in the baking tin. Then remove the Springform tin and place cake on a cooling rack to cool completely.

To make the whipped cream filling

Though the original recipe called for warmed honey, water, lemon zest and two sheets of gelatine to be added to whipped-up cream, I found the following ingredients and technique much less perilous and just as tasty.

VITAL: First chill the double cream, mixing bowl, and whisks in the freezer for 15-20 minutes. Weigh out and set to one side the icing sugar; then sprinkle the Cream of Tartar over it. Measure out the lemon essence and set to one side. After removing the chilled items from the freezer, and working speedily, add the double cream to the chilled bowl and whisk vigorously. I used a small electric hand mixer for this. When soft peaks start to form add the icing sugar and lemon essence and continue to whisk until the soft peaks firm up nicely, but DO NOT over-whisk! Place the bowl of cream in the fridge to cool and stabilise while the cake cools.

When the cake has cooled completely, slice it in half crossways and spread the lemon-scented creamy mix over the bottom half. You should end up with a gorgeous thick layer of cream. Carefully sandwich the two halves together and press lightly on the top half. Dust generously with icing sugar using a small strainer. Chill in a fridge for 30 minutes for the cream to settle before slicing.

All that remains is to slice…and enjoy!

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(yeah, I know, sliced a bit low lol)

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Last edited by Happy in Cyprus on Sun Sep 15, 2019 12:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PW in Polemi
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Re: TORTA PARADISO (PARADISE CAKE)

Post by PW in Polemi » Sun Jun 23, 2019 8:06 am

Oh Lloyd, how cruel you are, showing me that scrumptiousness before breakfast!
Next time, how about a truly seriously decadent cake ... make up twice the amount of cream, and cut the sponge twice, once down low as this one and the second across the middle of the top. Then invite me round to show you my magic trick "the disappearing cream cake"! 😂😂😂

Seriously, very well done on your culinary abilities, that cake looks yummy. 👏👏👏
Kay
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Re: TORTA PARADISO (PARADISE CAKE)

Post by Dominic » Sun Jun 23, 2019 8:31 am

We were visiting Nicosia over Father’s Day and the hotel did these Fathers Day cupcakes with bright blue icing. The day after I got a surprise when I went to the loo.
Web Designer / Developer. Currently working on Paphos Life.
Living in Polemi, Cyprus with my wife and daughter.

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PW in Polemi
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Location: Polemi of course! Doh!!! :)

Re: TORTA PARADISO (PARADISE CAKE)

Post by PW in Polemi » Sun Jun 23, 2019 8:46 am

😂😂😂
Don't ever overindulge in beetroot then!
Kay
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Happy in Cyprus
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Re: TORTA PARADISO (PARADISE CAKE)

Post by Happy in Cyprus » Sun Jun 23, 2019 10:57 am

Hi Kay. I won't make the same mistake cutting it again. I used a supposedly specific tool for the task, looked a bit like a flimsy hacksaw. I chucked it in the bin afterwards because it was rubbish. I have since ordered one of these little gems from Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07 ... UTF8&psc=1 Looks perfect for the job!

Dominic, no colourant is used in this cake. The yellowy colour in the cake comes purely from the egg yolks...and maybe the lemon zest. And the cream in the filling looks that colour because it really is such a rich double cream.

So you'll not be reminded in the loo of any over-indulging ;)

Maggie B
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Re: TORTA PARADISO (PARADISE CAKE)

Post by Maggie B » Sun Jun 23, 2019 8:07 pm

Honestly Lloyd, your recipes, along with pictorial evidence are fabulous. Thank you.

My eldest son has started 'hand writing' some of his/My favourite recipes in a wee book along with the tweeks and tips I have passed on.

My Mother worked in Service as a young girl, where she was taught to mix the LIGHTEST of sponges with her bare hands (no whisk, far less an electric one!). I just feel it is so important to pass on what I have learned from her. . . . . to him as he has such an interest in cooking and baking.

I still have my Mothers threadbare, flour and cinnamon covered, butter soaked pages which I often refer to and I sincerely hope you pass your favourites on to your young uns.

In fact, I reckon you should publish a dinky little paper back recipe book (like a Bero one) just for the Expats who will ACTUALLY be able to cook something authentically Cypriot.

I still treasure my time working at George's Garden Centre in Timi where Androulla taught me how to make Koypepia (Stuffed Vine Leaves), and a whole host of other Cypriot/Greek delights. You just cannot beat that experience. I struggle sometimes to get the perfect ingredients but, have also learned to adapt as I go along.

Again. Thank you for posting.

Maggie B

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