Whether or not there’s a special occasion, cakes always have a way of cheering me up. I dream about cakes everyday–I just admire the precision and artistry involved in cake baking and decorating. I don’t know if I’ll ever acquire the skill and talent to make a real edible cake (I’ve made one out of Play-Doh–does that count?), but what I know for sure is that I can devour cakes every single day. Let me tell you about two of my most recent cake discoveries: One is a creation of an esteemed pastry chef, the other is a product of mere passion–without any formal training. One is scrumptiously heavy, and the other incredibly light.
Cake # 1 : Roca Cake by Park Avenue Desserts
Chef Buddy Trinidad took up professional baking and pastry making courses abroad and was touted as a “pastry chef to the stars”, having worked in Hollywood for years. When he came back to Manila, he put up Park Avenue Desserts, offering cakes and dessert solutions to cafes and hotel restaurants. Recently, he set up shop at the Paseo de Magallanes complex, which I eagerly visited a few weeks ago. I tried the Roca Cake (individual size-P150)–creme brulee and caramel mousse lavishly enrobed in chocolate ganache and crowned with a thin chocolate disc with the shop’s initials. For added texture, almond slivers line the side of the cake, which also help tone down its sweetness. If you’re looking for a decadently rich chocolate experience, this cake is for you. I must warn you, though, that it’s a bit too sweet, thus making you want to reach for a glass of water so it’s best to share this cake with a friend or someone you love.
Cake # 2: Chocolate Macadamia Sansrival from the Cake Planet & Cafe
The Cake Planet and Cafe is the fulfillment of a sweet dream for a certain guy who has never had any formal training in baking. He is a young executive, holding a full-time job while managing to operate a cake shop “on the side.” Located along Dona Soledad Avenue in Better Living, Paranaque, this new cake place is starting to make waves–thanks, in large part, to Lori Baltazar’s famous blog site (dessertcomesfirst.com). My Bea and I went to visit the Cake Planet with the intention of sampling either the Mango Empress or the Lemon Walnut Torte, but neither of them was available at the time. We then opted for the shop’s bestselling Chocolate Macadamia Sansrival (P150/slice). In stark contrast to the first cake, this one has very subtle flavors. The chocolate buttercream frosting is utterly light, and the same goes for the meringue wafers, which seemed to “evaporate” quite instantly inside my mouth. My Bea liked it a lot, but I was kind of underwhelmed by it. Maybe I should’ve lowered my expectations. But just the same, the cake is quite good especially because of the macadamia nuts.
Got a new cake discovery lately?