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Pastry Cream and Genoise Questions

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Pastry Cream and Genoise Questions

Steve G | May 2, 2006 03:24 PM

What do you look for in recipes for both pastry cream and Genoise? I'm trying to make an exceptional princess cake for a very sick friend, and I'm having trouble finding good recipes for the foundation of the cake.

Pastry Cream:
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
6 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
4 large egg yolks, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

This seemed like way too much cornstarch, but I was pressed for time so I charged ahead with this recipe. The end result wasn't up to snuff, and tasted a bit starchy. Do some use gelatin to thicken a pastry cream?

Genoise:
5 large eggs
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup cake flour, sifted

I liked how my warmed but not cooked eggs tripled in volume when I beat them with sugar, and I didn't lose much volume when I sifted in the flour, but the final texture was tough. Do any experts out there recommend a slightly different Genoise recipe? Is it possible to over beat the warm egg/sugar mixture the way you can over beat egg whites? (I heated the eggs and sugar to 123 F in a double boiler while stirring constantly; the recipe said to stir with your hand until "very hot" which was a bit too imprecise for my pastry making tastes)

Link: http://home.ivillage.com/cooking/reci...

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