Monday, May 30, 2011

The treasure inside...

I was afraid to even pull up my blog today, as yet another full-week hiatus cannot be good for my following or readers in general.  Last week was a blur- not really busy with anything- but somehow completely packed all at the same time.  I bake all throughout the week, but sometimes my husband's (aka photographer's) schedule falls in a way that makes photographing beautiful food nearly impossible.  I thought about writing another photo-less diatribe on my life, but I was not in the mood for thinking last week, or causing anyone else to do the same.  AND-

If you can't say anything nice... you get it.

Which doesn't always apply, I have found.  I have developed quite a taste for cyber foot-in-mouth.


A few days ago, I made a cake per a friend's request, and it looked something like this...

I say "something like" as this is not the same cake.  I made another that looked, well- something like it.

I was pretty pleased with the overall look of this cake.  I was lurking around on, and I saw a similar version of this cake here.

And here.

AND here.  And, well... here, even.

In other words, as much as I would like to lay claim to such beautiful design, it is not my own.

Although it is pretty, and I plan to make many more.

As gorgeous as the cake is; as much as I love swirls of lavender-grey Swiss Meringue Buttercream- as close as Vanilla Butter Cake is to my heart and thighs- the real treasure of this cake is in the filling.

It is no secret how much I love citrus curd, but this creamy custard gets an upgrade in the form of mango puree.

If you have never made citrus curd, it is an absurdly easy task- and one that will demolish (obliterate, even) any sort of diet you might be on.

Citrus curd and blueberry pancakes: delicious.
Citrus curd and coconut cream cheese frosting: obscene.
Citrus curd and finger: you bet.
Citrus curd and palm of hand (spoon, ladle): why, of course!

You get it.

Mango Curd (only ever so slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

2 very ripe large mangoes (flesh removed as best you can and pureed)
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 c lemon or lime juice (I had lemon on hand)
4 large egg yolks
pinch of salt
1/2 stick of butter

Toss the puree (I used my blender for this), sugar, lemon juice, egg yolks, and salt into a heat-proof bowl.  Stir everything together, attach a candy thermometer, and place it over a pot of simmering water.  Stirring constantly (and being certain that the bottom of the bowl doesn't make contact with the simmering water), bring the mixture to 165-170 degrees.  This will take a bit.

Add the butter, one piece at a time, and set aside to cool for 20 minutes (or so).  Place in the refrigerator overnight, or until completely cool and thick.


Note: When filling a cake with curd, pipe a dam of frosting around the edges of the cake layers before filling the center with curd.  You will have a time trying to frost the cake afterward if you skip this step!

I hope all of you have a wonderful Memorial Day, and take a moment to cry like a baby over our freedom (listen to Tom Wait's "Day After Tomorrow").  Hug a soldier, and bring him a cake filled with mango curd.

Have a great one,

Rachel Bee


  1. hey rachel!
    i love the color of this cake, of course the overall look of the cake is stunning, but the color of the icing is very nice ;-)

  2. double batch of frosting, two drops of purple, and one of black, if i remember;)