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Birthday Cake and December 



December’s the best month of the year, don’t you think?

It was my daughter’s birthday recently, and to celebrate, I made her a winter-inspired cake. The cake features the young girl and her brother from “Stella and Sam”, a cartoon series based on the books by Canadian author Marie-Louis Gay.

I decorated the cake with royal icing snowflakes, with Stella and Sam coloured with edible markers for that hand-drawn effect.

The cake itself was made with soft chiffon, filled with homemade dulce de leche and frosted with whipped cream, giving it that winter feel that goes well with the cake’s theme.




Chiffon Cake:

  • Cake flour 250g
  • Sugar 200 g
  • Salt 6g
  • Baking powder 12g
  • Vegetable oil 125g
  • Egg yolks 125g
  • Water 188g
  • Vanilla extract 6g
  • Egg whites 250g
  • Sugar 125g
  • Cream of tartar 1g


1. Sift flour, half of sugar, salt and baking powder.

2. Mix the sifted flour, half of sugar, salt and baking powder at low speed.

3. Add your vegetable oil, followed by the egg yolks, water and vanilla extract. Add these in a slow and steady stream.

4. Once all the wet and dry ingredients are mixed. Set aside.

5. Whip the egg whites, add the cream of tartar. Once soft peaks form, add sugar.

6. Keep whipping the egg whites until firm but moist peaks form.

7. Fold the egg white to the flour-liquid mixture, being careful not to deflate the egg whites.

8. Immediately place in cake pans and give it a quick tap to release air bubbles.

9. Bake at 375F for 20 minutes, if using 6″ or 8″ cake pans.

Dulce de Leche:

It is very important that you watch this very closely as the mixture will definitely foam up.


  • Milk 1 L
  • Sugar 375 mL
  • Baking soda 1 mL
  • Vanilla 2 mL


1. Combine milk, sugar and baking soda in a heavy bottom saucepan. Bring to a slow boil without stirring. Keep a close watch.

2. Be very careful when mixture comes to a boil, it will foam up. Quickly remove from heat before it boils over and stir.

3. Turn the heat to low, place the pan back and cook slowly and stir frequently with a wooden spoon for about 45 – 60 minutes. The mixture will slowly caramelize.

4. Once the mixture has thickened and turned caramel brown but still pourable, remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Chiffon cake recipe and Dulce de Leche adapted from Wayne Gisslen Professional Baking, Sixth Edition



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