Lau­ren Del­gado:

Pas­try chef ’s ad­vice is ic­ing on cake.

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Mich Turner has quite the client list.

The owner of Lit­tle Venice Cake Co. based in Lon­don has cre­ated cakes for Queen El­iz­a­beth II, ac­tors Pierce Bros­nan and Emma Thomp­son, for­mer Bea­tle Paul McCart­ney, rocker Ozzy Os­bourne, chef Gor­don Ram­say and soc­cer star David Beck­ham.

Turner has been bak­ing cakes and other treats since she was a child, stand­ing on a chair to make short­bread or stamp out bis­cuits.

More than 10,000 cakes later, the chair is de­cid­edly un­nec­es­sary.

Turner will be in Cen­tral Florida this week for The Amer­ica’s Cake Fair. The three-day show will host bak­ing-themed classes, demon­stra­tions, ven­dors and more Fri­day through Sun­day at the Or­ange County Con­ven­tion Cen­ter. (Tick­ets, $20 and up, at


Turner will demon­strate how to make hand-painted sugar but­ter­flies at 11 a.m. Sun­day. She will also take the main stage at 11:30 a.m. Fri­day and 1 p.m. Saturday for a dis­cus­sion that in­cludes her new book, “Have Your Cake and Eat It.”

In it, Turner shares recipes and tips on cre­at­ing health­ier desserts. There’s one rule with these “healthy” cakes:

“They have to taste amaz­ing,” Turner said. “There’s noth­ing bland or bor­ing about them.” Here are a few tips Turner shared:

Try dif­fer­ent frost­ings. If you want frost­ing on your cake, give some thought as to the type. Is but­ter­cream a must, or would a Greek yo­gurt frost­ing work just as well? Same goes for the fill­ing.

“By choos­ing dif­fer­ent ways of putting fill­ings and frost­ings to­gether you can be clever with the calo­ries you’re con­sum­ing,” Turner said. Think about in­gre­di­ent qual­ity.

Avoid ar­ti­fi­cial col­or­ing for some­thing more nat­u­ral, such as beet­root pow­der for red vel­vet cake. Lit­tle tricks can cut calo­ries.

Hand-pip­ing in­stead of lay­er­ing ic­ing onto your cake can trim off some calo­ries, Turner said.

Her recipe for Ba­nana, Co­conut & Caramel Pavlova ex­em­pli­fies this. It con­tains all the fla­vors of a banof­fee, an English dessert pie that uses ba­nanas, cream and tof­fee. By serv­ing caramel on the side it has some por­tion con­trol as well.

Gluten-free and dairy-free co­conut meringue is filled with fresh cream and sliced ba­nanas.

Ba­nana, Co­conut & Caramel Pavlova

Reprinted with per­mis­sion from “Have Your Cake and Eat It” © 2017 by Mich Turner, Ster­ling Epi­cure.

6 large egg whites at room tem­per­a­ture Scant 1½ cups su­perfine sugar 1 tea­spoon dis­tilled white vine­gar ½ tea­spoon cream of tar­tar Gen­er­ous 1 cup dried unsweet­ened co­conut


1½ cups whip­ping cream, whipped 3 ripe ba­nanas ½ quan­tity salted (or un­salted) caramel (be­low) 1 ounce dried co­conut flakes

1. Pre­heat oven 350 F. Draw a 10-inch cir­cle on a sheet of parch­ment pa­per, turn it up­side down, and use it to line a bak­ing sheet.

2. Beat egg whites un­til stiff peaks, but not dry, and add sugar 1 ta­ble­spoon at a time un­til stiff and shiny. Add vine­gar and cream of tar­tar and stir in the dried co­conut.

3. Spread meringue onto the cir­cle on pre­pared sheet and make an in­den­ta­tion in the cen­ter with the back of a spoon.

4. Trans­fer meringue to oven, im­me­di­ately re­duce the tem­per­a­ture to 250 F, and bake for 1 hour 30 min­utes. Turn off oven, open door slightly and leave the meringue to cool com­pletely in the oven.

5. Place meringue on a large plate, pile with whipped cream and slice over the fresh, ripe ba­nanas. Driz­zle caramel over the top and sprin­kle with toasted co­conut. Serve ad­di­tional caramel sauce on the side.

The meringue can be made up to three days in ad­vance and stored in an air­tight con­tainer at room tem­per­a­ture. Once filled, it should be con­sumed the same day, within four hours. Not suit­able for freez­ing.

Salted caramel sauce

2⁄3 cup heavy cream 3⁄4 cup su­perfine sugar 1 ½ ta­ble­spoons un­salted but­ter A pinch of salt Put cream in saucepan and bring to a boil. Re­move from heat and let cool slightly. Melt and cook sugar in a saucepan, with no stir­ring, un­til it turns a dark caramel color. Re­move from heat and add cream — a lit­tle at first, as it will bub­ble up, then pour in the re­main­der. Add but­ter and stir un­til it has melted. Add salt to taste. Cool and let thicken. Store for up to 14 days in a jar in re­frig­er­a­tor.

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