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Sans Rival

Catherine of Munchie Musings was our November Daring Bakers’ host and she challenged us to make a traditional Filipino dessert – the delicious Sans Rival cake!  And for those of us who wanted to try an additional Filipino dessert, Catherine also gave us a bonus recipe for Bibingka which comes from her friend Jun of Jun-blog.

cashews two ways

In case you’re confused, yes, this was last month’s challenge.  I am super late posting this!  Procrastination, the usual culprit, wasn’t to blame this time.  Although too late to count, I finally decided to make the Sans Rival last week in between bowing string parts for Beethoven 3 (it’s totally fine and normal if you don’t know what this entails).  With the ingredients on hand and friends to feed it to that evening, why not?

(umm, especially when this is the only thing I’ve been able to make since Thanksgiving…)

I had to stop myself from macaronnage-ing or whatever.

This wasn’t too difficult to make, just a little time consuming if you’re also a slowpoke.  The plan was to bake two 8×8 squares of cake, then cut them in half, making four 4×2 rectangles.  As you can see, there are only two layers.  In an effort to be precise, I laid one cake on the other to cut them equally and they were forever squished together.

meringue cake!

I halved the Sans Rival recipe and added 1 teaspoon Vietnamese cinnamon to the cake part instead of using cocoa powder.  TIP: if you also want to halve this recipe, just do so with the cake and not the French buttercream.  Why?  1) It’s a pain trying to boil such a small amount of sugar and water (it crystallized on me), 2) you can use what you need and freeze the rest, and 3) you won’t waste any yolks!  I learn from experience to look out for you guys.

Anyway, this cake was delicious and not quite like anything I’ve had before!  The soft, chewy* meringue with the creamy buttercream and crunchy cashews  all worked excellently together.  It was also the perfect size for the four of us: we demolished it, but probably would have had leftovers had it been any larger.

* Yeah, so I forgot that the layers were actually supposed to be crunchy and didn’t dry them out in the oven.  I mean….I totally meant to have yummy, soft, chewy layers…yep.

Sans Rival

Thanks to Catherine for introducing us to a new-to-me dessert!  Sorry that it took me a while to make it and even longer to post it, but as always, better late than never.  Click here for the challenge write-up and recipes!