A Not So Successful Cake with 20 Egg Yolks!

Kek Lapis or Indonesian Layer Cake is a really popular snack in Malaysia. We eat this a lot when we were young, not knowing what was in the cake then of course. It’s really rich and bursting with wonderful flavours. It’s been on my to-cook list for a long time but I couldn’t bring myself to try it because of the amount of egg yolks and butter needed.
Indonesian layer cake 1
Last weekend was an opportunity to ‘spread the fats’, I decided to make this for our lab’s international party. I wanted to make this gooey and sticky kuih lapis, which is another type of layered cake, but I couldn’t find srewpine (pandan) leaves anywhere in Chinatown.
Indonesian layer cake 3
Making this cake was hard work. I spent about two hours rooted in front of the oven as each layer has to be handled with care. This cake was actually grilled rather than baked, so if you go for a toilet break while your cake is in the oven, you might end up with a burnt layer and your whole cake ruined. I folded beaten egg whites into my egg yolk mixture as I came across a lot of recipes with that step. This might also help lighten up the cake. But something went wrong. The cake was tasty, but it was a bit hard and chewy..hmm..rubbery? The batter started to curdle when I added butter mixture into bean egg yolks. Is this why? Or I might have over-mixed the batter? The egg whites added? Ay ideas?
Indonesian layer cake 4
Adapted from Nyonya food
  • 340g unsalted butter – softened at room temperature
  • 2 tbs condensed milk
  • 20 egg yolks
  • 140g icing sugar
  • 56g cake flour – sifted
  • 1 1/2 tsp all spice
  • 2 tbs brandy
  • 4 egg whites
  • 2 tbs caster sugar
  • Line and grease an 18x18cm square cake pan.
  • Preheat oven at 180°C.
  • Beat butter and condensed milk till smooth. Leave aside.
  • In another bowl, beat the egg yolks and icing sugar till pale and thick.
  • Fold butter into egg yolk mixture.
  • Fold in sifted flour in 2 batches until combined.
  • Add all spice and brandy.
  • In a clean bowl, whisk egg whites and sugar unstil stiff peaks formed. Fold into egg yolk mixture.
  • Put a small ladle of batter into pan and spread evenly. Bake at 180°C for 5 minutes or till the top is browned.
  • Remove from oven, flatten layer using something flat.
  • Put another small ladle of batter into pan and spread evenly. Grill until golden brown. Repeat this until batter is finished.
  • After you have finished the last layer, turn the oven to bake function. Cover top of the cake with aluminium foil and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Remove and cool on wire rack.
Indonesian layer cake 2