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Mirror Glaze Cake (aka Galaxy Glaze Cake)

Patricia Reitz

Mirror Glaze Cake Iaka Galaxy Glaze Cake) - ButterYum

Mirror Glaze Cake Iaka Galaxy Glaze Cake) - ButterYum

Recently I was asked to demonstrate a mirror glaze cake technique (aka galaxy glaze technique) at a cake show and I thought perhaps all of my readers would enjoy learning about it too.  As you'll see, this technique is sticky and fun and very unpredictable so you never know exactly what you're going to end up with.   Let's get started.

Important:  

This technique starts with a frozen chocolate mousse cake - you can also include fruit and/or actual cake as well (which I'll be showing you).  Plan ahead - there's a lot of freezer time needed for this technique.  

Also, this is going to be a very long post so I'll try condense photos as much as possible.

You can get special silicone molds (like these) for this technique, but today I'll show you how to use a 9-inch silicone springform pan, and I'll bake an 8-inch layer of cake to go inside the cheesecake pan.  If you're in a hurry, you can make smaller individual size servings which will freeze much faster (this is the pan I like to use for individual servings).

how to make a galaxy glaze cake (aka mirror glaze cake) - recipe and how-to photos

Before I show you how I make the chocolate cake layer, I want to tell you that I always coat my baking pans with Baker's Joy (a oil/flour nonstick baking spray), and I line the bottom of the pans with a layer of parchment paper.  Also, to ensure a cake my cakes rise evenly without a big hump in the middle, I always wrap my pans with moistened insulated baking strips.  

To make the cake, start by combining dutch-processed cocoa powder with boiling hot water.  

Whisk well to eliminate clumps.

Set aside until needed.

In a small bowl, whisk together sugar, egg, and vanilla.

Whisk whisk, whisk.

Done.

Add the flour, baking soda, and salt.

Whisk to combine.

Add the reserved cocoa mixture and mix well.

Pour batter into prepared cake pan and bake until a toothpick inserted near the middle comes out clean. 

Here's another trick that will help ensure an evenly baked cake...

Insert an Ateco heating core (they're great for really wet cake batters like this one, and I always use them for cakes that are over 9 inches in diameter).

See how perfectly even that cake rose in the pan?  No hump in the center thanks to the insulated cake strips, and no fallen center thanks to the heating core.  Pure perfection!

Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn it out.  If you prepped your pan with Baker's Joy and parchment paper, it should release without any trouble.  Peel the parchment paper off and pull out the heating core.  Allow the cake to cool completely (I like to pop it in the fridge at this point - it'll cool fast and chilled cake is always easier to handle than warm cake).

Time to make white chocolate mousse.  To begin, we'll make white chocolate ganache by pouring scalding hot cream over really good quality white chocolate that's been chopped into small pieces.  Let this mixture sit for several minute, then gently whisk until fully incorporated. 

Yes, you can use high quality chocolate chocolate chips if you like, but chips contain stabilizers that don't melt when heated (this allows the chips to hold their shape when warm).  I find it best to use bar chocolate or white chocolate disks used by pastry chefs (like these or these).

Pour the ganache through a sieve to remove any unmelted bits of white chocolate.  Allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for several hours (or overnight) to "set" (firm up).  

DO NOT cover the hot mixture with plastic wrap because condensation will form on the plastic and will drip down onto the ganache which can make the chocolate seize (turn grainy).  If you must cover the hot chocolate mixture, use a clean kitchen towel which will absorb the steam given off by the hot ganache.

When the white chocolate has "set", whip cold heavy cream until stiff peaks form....

Then fold the whipped cream and white chocolate ganache together until combined.

Next, place the chilled cake layer on a silpat lined sheet pan and  wrap well with an adjustable cake ring.

Make sure the adjustable cake ring is tight, then add a layer of fresh raspberries.

Pour just enough white chocolate mousse over the berries to cover them.

Freeze for several hours until the white chocolate mousse is frozen enough to remove the adjustable cake ring.

Before we transfer the cake/white chocolate mousse to the silicone springform pan, the base of the pan needs to be lined with plastic wrap.  You could also use parchment paper.

YPlace the partially frozen chocolate cake topped with raspberries and white chocolate mousse in the center of the springform pan.  There should be about 1/2-inch space between the cake and the springform pan walls.  We're going to fill that space with chocolate mousse.

The chocolate mousse is made the same way as the white chocolate mousse - make the ganache by combining scalding heavy cream with chopped chocolate (use high quality like this or this).  Allow the ganache to cool for several hours to "set" (firm up).  

Then carefully fold it with some whipped cream.

Continue folding until the chocolate and cream are completely incorporated (this photo shows that we're not quite there yet). 

I like to use a disposable pastry bag to squeeze the chocolate ganache down into that 1/2-inch space.  Be careful to not allow any air gaps.

Once the 1/2-inch gap is filled, pour the remaining ganache on top of the white chocolate layer to fill the pan completely and use a very long spatula to smooth to top flush with the top of the springform pan.  

Freeze until frozen solid (notice how easily the silicone pan releases from the frozen mouse cake pictured on the right).  If you only have a metal springform pan, be sure to line the base with plastic wrap or parchment paper, and line the sides with food-grade acetate (like this) - the acetate will release easily from the frozen mousse (the metal pan will not).

Now for the really fun part - we get to make the galaxy glaze (aka mirror glaze).  Here's how.

Gather the ingredients for the glaze:  water, granulated gelatin, superfine sugar, light corn syrup, sweetened condensed milk, and chopped high quality white chocolate.  

Stir the granulated gelatin and water together and allow the gelatin to hydrate for 10 minutes.

In a nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat, cook the superfine sugar, water, and light corn syrup together (I love using this caramel pot anytime I need to heat sugary liquids).  

Heat the mixture, stirring occasionally, until it reaches 217F (right around the time it starts to boil).  

Immediately remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the hydrated gelatin until it dissolves.

DSC_9947.JPG

You'll know the gelatin has dissolved when there are no more granules stuck to the bottom or sides of the pan. 

Add the sweetened condensed milk.

How to make galaxy glaze or mirror glaze for cakes.

Stir to combine.

Pour the hot mixture over the chopped chocolate and let it rest for a couple of minutes.

Then whisk to combine.

Use an immersion blender to carefully blend the mixture for two full minutes...

Being careful not to incorporate much air (see short video clip).

Allow the mixture to cool to between 85-95F.

DSC_9996.JPG

Use food coloring suitable for chocolate (I used this brand - the most important color being white.

In the photo above, you can see the glaze on the left has no white coloring added - it's kind of translucent and has a yellow tone which will affect other colors added.  The glaze on the right has white coloring added, which turns the mixture opaque and bright white so any additional colors added will be true.  

Divvy up the glaze and color as you like.  

I think a mix of 3 or 4 colors gives the best results.

Customize colors to coordinate with sports teams, holidays, party themes, etc.

Have fun drizzling that glaze all over the frozen mousse cake(s).  There's no right or wrong way to do it, just be sure to cover all exposed areas.  

disco dust on galaxy mirror glaze - ButterYum

For an extra special finishing touch, sprinkle a little edible "disco dust" on the wet glaze.  It will add a sparkly iridescence that looks amazing.  

Oooo!

And here's a quick view of a large cake I covered with a pastel colored glazed  - I love how the layers of chocolate cake, raspberries, and white and regular chocolate mousse look together.  Chill frozen mousse cake in refrigerator until it thaws enough that it can be cut easily.  Serve very thin slices - this cake is very rich.   Enjoy! 

Items used and/or needed to make this recipe:


Printable Recipes

Chocolate Cake Layer

makes one 8-inch cake layer

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup dutch-processed cocoa powder, sifted 
  • 2/3 cup boiling water
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325F and place rack in center oven position.
  2. Spray 8-inch cake pan with baking spray (such as Baker's Joy) and wrap pan with insulated baking strip.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder and boiling water until no clumps remain; set aside.
  4. In another small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  5. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, butter, egg, and vanilla; add the contents from both of the previous bowls and mix well to combine.
  6. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake in center of oven for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  7. Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes before turning cake out onto a rack to cool completely.  

 

Chocolate Mousse

makes 6 cups

Ingredients

  • 4 cup chopped semisweet chocolate (700 grams)
  • 4 2/3 cups heavy cream, divided (2 2/3c, 2 c)

Directions

  1. Place chocolate in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Heat 2 2/3 cups heavy cream in the microwave or on the stovetop until boiling and pour over chocolate and rest for 2 minutes; gently whisk to combine fully and allow to cool for at least 10-15 minutes (or longer).
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, beat remaining 2 cups heavy cream until soft peaks form; fold into chocolate mixture until no streaks of cream remain; pour into mold(s) and freeze.

 

White Chocolate Mousse

makes 3 cups

Ingredients

  • 2 cup chopped white chocolate (350 grams)
  • 2 cups heavy cream, divided (1 1/3c, 2/3 c)

Directions

  1. Place chocolate in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Heat 1 1/3 cups heavy cream in the microwave or on the stovetop until boiling and pour over chocolate and rest for 2 minutes; gently whisk to combine fully and allow to cool completely and thicken a bit, 2-3 hours.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, beat remaining 2/3 cups heavy cream until soft peaks form; fold into chocolate mixture until no streaks of cream remain; pour into mold(s) and freeze.

 

Galaxy Mirror Glaze

makes about 4 cups (enough to coat a 9-inch cake)

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons unflavored granulated gelatin
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 1/4 cup super fine sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 3/4 cups chopped white chocolate (306 grams)
  • white gel food color
  • other gel food colors

Directions

  1. In a small bowl, use a fork to combine gelatin and 1/2 cup water (be sure no dry clumps remain); set aside for 10 minutes to allow the gelatin to bloom (hydrate).
  2. In a heavy-bottom saucepan over medium-high heat, combine corn syrup, sugar, and remaining 1/2 cup water; stirring until sugar dissolves; bring to 217F.
  3. Remove saucepan from heat and add bloomed gelatin; stir until gelatin melts and no granules remain; add sweetened condensed milk and stir to combine.
  4. Pour mixture over white chocolate and rest for several minutes; gently whisk until all the white chocolate melts and mixture is fully incorporated, being careful to not incorporate air bubbles.
  5. Use a stick blender to blend for 1-2 minutes to make the mixture completely smooth (add gel food coloring if desired).  
  6. Allow glaze to cool to between 85 and 95F, then pour over frozen dessert.  Leftover glaze can be refrigerated for several days - just reheat gently in the microwave, using 10-15 second intervals, stirring each time, until temp it reaches the proper pouring temperature.  

 

Notes:

  • mousse must be frozen solid before covering with glaze.  
  • after glazing, place cake(s) in refrigerator to allow glaze to set and allow the frozen mousse to soften before serving.
  • if you're unsure if your food colors are compatible with chocolate, test color a small batch first (stir very well and make sure the glaze remains pourable - if it thickens or gets clumpy, try a different brand of coloring).
  • frozen mousse will release easily from silicone, but not metal so if you have a metal springform pan, line the bottom well with parchment and line the sides with food-grade acetate (like this).

Amish Onion Patties

Patricia Reitz

Amish Onions Patties - ButterYum

Amish Onions Patties - ButterYum

If you like the flavor of caramelized onions, you'll go bonkers for these Amish Onion Patties - they're crunchy and completely addictive.  Serve them piping hot with cold sour cream on the side for dipping - then sit back and wait for the oohs and aahs.  

Amish Onion Patties - recipe with how-to photos - ButterYum

Measure out all the ingredients needed.

how to make amish onion patties - ButterYum - recipe and how-to photos

Place the dry ingredients in a medium mixing bowl.

easy recipe for amish onion patties - ButterYum

Whisk them together.

fried onion patties - recipe and how-to photos - ButterYum

Add the milk.

Mix well until no lumps remain.

deliciou onion fritter recipe - with how-to photos - ButterYum

Add the onions.

fried onion patties - fried onion fritters - recipe and how-to photos - ButterYum

Stir the onions until they're completely coated with the batter.

shimmering oil

Heat some peanut or canola oil in a 10-inch cast iron skillet.

testing the temperature of frying oil without a thermometer - ButterYum

You'll know the oil is hot enough when bubble appear around a wooden spoon handle when inserted in the oil.

frying onion patties - amish recipe - ButterYum

Portion patties using 1/4-cup measure.  Fry until the first side is brown.  I like 'em really brown.  

Carefully turn them over and repeat on the other side.

Amish Onion Patties - recipe - ButterYum

Remove from hot oil when done.  I find a flat whisk (like this one) is perfect for this job.

Amish Recipes - Onion Patties - ButterYum

Drain for a minute or two on paper towels, then transfer to a cooling rack so they stay nice and crispy.

Amish Onion Patties - recipe with how-to photos 

Serve immediately with sour cream and chives.  Enjoy!

Items used to make this recipe:


Amish Onion Patties

makes 6 (3-inch diameter patties)

Printable Recipe

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons milk
  • 1 1/4 cup finely minced onion
  • peanut or canola oil for frying 
  • optional garnish:  sour cream and chopped chives

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, and pepper.
  2. Add milk and stir until no lumps remain; stir in onions.
  3. In a 10-inch cast iron or nonstick skillet over medium heat, heat about 1/2-inch of oil until the tip of a wooden spoon bubbles when placed in the oil.
  4. Fry 1/4-cup portions, 3 at a time, for several minutes until brown on first side, then carefully turn over and fry until the second side is brown.
  5. Remove from skillet and drain on paper towel for 1 minute, then transfer to a cooling rack to keep them crispy.  
  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 with remaining batter; serve immediately.

 

 

Freezing Peaches

Patricia Reitz

Freezing Peaches - ButterYum

Freezing Peaches - ButterYum

I absolutely love when fresh peach season arrives.  Peaches make an appearance in my morning smoothies so here is the easiest and most simple technique I've found to preserve these sweet summer fruits.  

how to freeze peaches for smoothies - ButterYum

Start with clean, ripe peaches.  I find the less the peaches are handled, the nicer they look so I don't peel them, but you certainly can if you like (my favorite technique for peeling peaches can be found here).   

You'll need some freshly squeezed lemon juice to make an acidulated water dip that will help preserve the peaches color. 

The acidulated water is made of 1 part freshly squeezed lemon juice and 4 parts water. 

Simply cut the peaches into wedges and dunk the in the acidulated water. 

Then place the peach slices on a silpat lined sheet pan and pop them in the freezer for several hours until firm.

After the peaches have frozen solid, transfer them to a freezer-safe container for long term storage.

If you plan to use the peaches within a month or so, you can use a standard zipper storage bag.  For longer storage, use a vacuum sealer (here's the one I have).

how to make pureed peaches for smoothies - ButterYum

An even quicker peach preparation to use in smoothies is to place the slices in a heavy duty blender and give them a blitz.  Then portion individual amounts into small freezer bags.  As you can see, the color has darkened a bit, but that's fine with me since the puree is going into this smoothie recipe.  

Note:  Freshly squeezed lemon juice can be added to help preserve the color, but that would change the overall flavor of the peaches so I opted to not do that.  

Items used in this technique:


Freezing Peaches

makes 8 servings

Printable Recipe

Ingredients

  • 4 ripe peaches, washed and dried
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 cups cold water 

Directions

  1. Peel peaches if desired.
  2. Cut peaches in half and remove pit; cut peach halves into 8 wedges.
  3. In a small bowl, combine lemon juice and water; dip peach slices into water and place in a single layer on a silpat lined half sheet pan.
  4. Freeze for several hours or overnight; transfer to freezer-safe container for long-term storage.