Ken Hardy was too busy baking when we find him via the video link; A little red, but joyful. “He downed a bit this week, but you won’t hear me complain, at least there’s work!”
Since 2010, Hardy has been running the American Baking Company in The Hague with his husband/business partner Jur van Hoorn and bakes traditional American dishes. I’m thinking of red velvetCheesecake, cupcake, apple pies employment pecan pies, but also carrot cake: carrot cake.
Strictly speaking, carrot cake is not an American invention. It is believed to have been invented in medieval Europe. cooking book Chef’s art (1814) by Antoine Bouvier, Chef of King Louis XVI, containing a recipe carrot cake. Carrot cake is also popular in Switzerland, and they call it there rueblitorte, Less fat than American carrot cake And with a thinner coating.
However, it was the Americans who made carrot cake great. In addition to grated carrots, the mixture usually contains cracker spices, nuts, and possibly fruit. Moreover, a thick layer of white frost (cream cream layer, butter, sugar and vanilla) not missing, cake also has one or two layers of this inside. “I would have preferred to put two layers in the carrot cake, but then it would be too loud. The Dutch don’t like huge points and live healthier than Americans, haha.”
“The recipe that I unfortunately cannot share with you in detail, I started in my previous hometown of San Antonio, Texas. I worked in a restaurant with carrot cake on the menu. People were lining up for it! The lady who invented it shared her recipe with me.”
“Here’s what it tastes like, and that really goes for all cakes and waffles, but even better thanks to the organic Dutch dairy and eggs. They’re richer and tastier than America. We use organic and local produce as much as possible. Sometimes that’s the challenge. Like the nuts we use often, but those Trees need a relatively large amount of water.”
Without immediately revealing all of his cooking secrets, there is one sacred side to Ken. “The frost It should be made from real cream cheese. There are people who make butter glazes, but that’s not how it should be. A pinch of salt in cream cheese works wonders, by the way. Perhaps unnecessarily: let the cake cool before covering it with icing.”
The inside of the cake should not be dry at all, it should taste moist. “What goes for baking in general also applies to carrot cake: weigh the ingredients precisely and let it come to room temperature. Mix all the dry ingredients first, then the wet. Oh, and keep the recipe in order when mixing the ingredients…”
How far should you preach those carrots? And how important is it to the overall tasting experience? Ken: “Very important! Carrots are sweet and not just for texture. Our cake contains six to eight large carrots.”
“Okay, okay, I’m going to lift a corner of the veil. That Texan woman from our base recipe—we adapted it—has a son with a food allergy, so she tossed everything in the juicer. Stuffing leftover carrot pulp in carrot cake. Gives a completely different texture and taste.” We freeze the carrot grater first, it softens and releases water, half of it we use in the cake, and it becomes moist and sticky inside. ”
Research also shows that bakers sometimes add fruit, so does that also apply to hardy? With a naughty look: “That’s right, we use pineapple to make our cake more moist. It also has a bit of orange pulp.. How much? You have to test that for yourself.”
Well, another baking secret! “We mainly use baking soda instead of baking powder. This makes the cake more tender. It reacts favorably with sour pineapple. Try a few things, choose fresh and organic. But above all, enjoy the result!”
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