After two grueling move-ins, we were finally successful in bringing my baking equipment and ingredients to Makati. Sadly, my beloved oven was left behind in Malabon since gas ovens and ranges are not allowed in the building that we’re staying at. Most baking addicts will lose their minds over not having an oven and go into baking withdrawal. Luckily for me, I found this unfortunate circumstance more of a challenge to be resourceful than anything else. Who says I need a gas oven to bake a decent cake? It’s time you meet the underrated baking power of the Microwave Oven! 😀
Now that it’s settled that we’ll be baking using the microwave oven, another dilemma has presented itself — I have no idea what to bake! So I scoured our pantry and realized I have all the basic ingredients to make a plain vanilla cake. But who wants that, right? Then I remembered we still have a kilo of mangoes, slowly rotting in the refrigerator, that my Nanay has brought us when she visited last week. Now we’re all ready to make my favorite Microwave Mango Buttercream Cake.
The first thing we need to do is the cake. We’ll be using the microwave, so our cake ingredients require some adjustment. To be honest, it’s not the best cake, texture-wise, but it can do the job if you want a quick, no-sweat dessert for lunch or dinner.
Microwave Yellow Cake Recipe
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup butter or margarine
- 1 egg
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
1. Cream sugar and butter in a large bowl using an electric mixer until light in color. Mix in the egg.
*Sorry, I wasn’t able to take a picture of this procedure because I forgot that I will be sharing the recipe on the blog. 😀
2. Combine the milk and vanilla. Combine all the remaining dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Alternately add the milk mixture and dry ingredients into the butter mixture. Beat the mixture for 1 minute at medium speed. *Make sure not to overmix or you’ll end up with a hard, barely edible cake.
3. Grease an 8 or 9-inch round baking dish with butter. *You can also cut out a circular piece of parchment / baking paper and place it at the bottom of the dish, so you can easily remove the cake once it has cooled.
4. Pour the cake batter into the baking dish, then cook it at LOW for 6 minutes, then at HIGH for 4 1/2 to 5 1/2 minutes or until toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean.
*Our microwave has 10 power settings. For low, I set it at 3 power, and for high, I set it at 8. Your microwave settings will be different from ours, so make sure to check your user’s manual first.
5. Remove the cake from the microwave oven and let it stand, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
*After you finish baking the cake, allow it to cool completely before removing it from the container or you could ruin your cake.
6. Invert cake on a cooling rack.
Mango Jam Recipe
- 1/2 cup diced mangoes
- 1 cup sugar
1. Dice mangoes and combine with sugar on a sauce pan.
2. Allow to boil until syrup thickens, but make sure it doesn’t burn. Cool the jam completely before adding into the buttercream.
*Boil the syrup until it thickens to a honey-like consistency. Allow it to cool completely before you add into the buttercream or your buttercream will melt. You’ll end up with a butter soup. Yum! Haha!
Mango Buttercream Frosting Recipe
- 60 grams egg whites (2 egg whites)
- 120 grams sugar (1/2 cup sugar)
- 180 grams butter (3/4 cup butter)
- 1/2 cup mango jam (cool)
1. Boil some water in a sauce pan.
2. Combine egg whites and sugar in a clean, dry bowl. Place it on top of the sauce pan. Make sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the boiling water.
*Unless you want scrambled eggs, make sure the bottom of your bowl doesn’t touch the boiling water. All we need to heat the egg mixture is the steam.
3. Stir the egg white mixture until all sugar granules have dissolved. Remove from heat.
*You can dip your finger into the mixture (it will be hot, of course) and check if there are still grains of sugar. Continue heating ’til the sugar granules have dissolved completely.
4. Immediately whip egg whites using a hand mixer until medium peaks have formed.
*Whip the egg mixture while it’s hot. If you let it cool before whipping, it will not reach stiff or medium peaks.
5. In a separate bowl, whip butter until pale yellow in color or it forms stiff peaks.
*Most Swiss Buttercream recipes will tell you to add cubed butter into the whipped eggs slowly. I don’t find that effective. It works better if you whip the butter to stiff peaks separately then combine it with whipped egg whites.
6. Pour the whipped butter into the whipped egg whites. Whip the two together until well-combined.
*Since we whipped our butter separately, the time we need to whip the butter and egg whites together is cut in half. Talk about efficiency! Haha! 😛
7. Transfer 1/4 of the buttercream into another clean bowl and allow to cool in the refrigerator.
*We will be using 1/4 of the buttercream to design our cake for later. We don’t want to add mango jam in it because the pieces of mangoes in the buttercream will make it a challenge to pipe out later. Plain buttercream will be easier to pipe.
8. Add 1/2 cup of cooled Mango Jam into the remaining 3/4 of the buttercream. Mix well and allow to cool in the refrigerator for 10 minutes before using.
*The mango jam should have cooled completely before adding it into the buttercream. Remember: buttercream soup!
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup brandy (optional)
1. Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan.
2. Allow to boil until sugar has dissolved. Let it cool.
*This sugar syrup will help keep our cake moist. It’s a minor detail that will create a major effect on the cake. Trust me. 🙂
How To Assemble The Cake:
1. Using a bread knife, slice the cake in half to make two layers. Transfer cake into a cake plate.
2. Soak first cake layer with the sugar syrup using a pastry brush.
*Take note: sugar syrup will keep your cake moist!
3. Top first layer of cake with Mango Buttercream Frosting. Spread it evenly using a spatula.
*I have an offset spatula, but you can use the back of your knife if you don’t have one. Just be careful though.
4. Put the second layer of cake on top of the frosted first cake layer, then brush it with sugar syrup as well.
5. Cover the whole cake with our frosting.
*Honestly speaking, this procedure would be a lot easier to do if you have an offset spatula. It doesn’t need to be perfectly smooth if you’re just going to eat it at home. You can even add spikes using the back of a spoon, if you can’t make it smooth.
6. Put the 1/4 plain buttercream we set aside (without the mango jam) in a piping pag. Pipe the buttercream on top of the cake to whatever style you like (stars or rosettes).
*If you don’t have a piping bag and piping tip, you can use a ziplock bag. Just cut off its tip and pipe the buttercream on top of the cake.
7. Slice some mangoes into triangles as our garnish on top of our piped buttercream.
8. Cool the cake in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours before serving. Enjoy!
*Cool the cake in the fridge to give the buttercream time to set.
The microwave is a highly underrated piece of cooking equipment. It has more uses than just simply warming you packed lunches. If used properly, it can become an all-around super cooking machine, and I promise to share more microwave recipes in the future just to prove that!
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