The Flourist's woodland Christmas | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, December 19, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, December 19, 2017

The Flourist's woodland Christmas



2 cups flour, sifted thrice

1½ cup granulated sugar

1 tbsp baking powder

1 tsp salt 

½ cup vegetable oil

7 egg yolks

¾ cup cold water

2 tsp vanilla extract

1 lemon rind grated

7 egg whites

½ tsp cream of tartar

For the French buttercream —

75g egg yolk

90g granulated sugar

40ml water

1 tsp vanilla extract

125g unsalted butter

A few drops of rose pink gel food colour

For the Macerated strawberries —

1 cup fresh strawberries

1 tsp balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp sugar syrup

For the Chiffon cake —

Preheat oven to 165 C. Prepare three 4” cake pans brushed with butter and lined with parchment paper. Place flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl. Mix in. 

Make a well in the centre and add oil, yolks, water, vanilla, and grated lemon rind. Fold and barely mix.

In another bowl, beat the egg whites till it reaches a stiff peak. Add one third to the yolk mix, folding it in gently. 

Once fully mixed in, divide into three pans. Cook each layer for 15-20 minutes, checking to see if it's done. Once fully cooked (check with a knife, if it comes out clean then the cake is ready) remove and cool completely.

For the French buttercream —

Place sugar and water in a saucepan and heat up until its temperature reaches 118 C. Monitor the heat using a candy thermometer.  Meanwhile, measure out the egg yolks in a bowl. Whisk with a handheld electric whisk or on a stand mixer. The yolks will fluff up and double in size.

Once the sugar syrup comes to temperature, dunk the bottom of the saucepan in a shallow bowl of water to shock the syrup and lessen bubbles. Add the syrup to the egg yolks in a thin stream from one side of the bowl, whisking the yolks the entire time. Once the entire syrup has been poured in, whisk at high speed for 10-12 minutes until cool to the touch.

Add the butter in bits to the mix while you keep whisking. Once all the butter can be added, the mixture will turn into a silky buttercream. Add vanilla essence and food colour and use as required.


Place a cool layer of chiffon cake on your board. Add a dollop of French buttercream. Push to the sides and make a very shallow well. Repeat with another layer. Top up with the final layer and using a scraper and a leveller, coat and finish the cake in the buttercream. Keep in fridge to chill, while you finish off the decorations.


Decorate with a white chocolate drip, flowers, meringue dust, fresh flowers and anything else that strikes your fancy!

Cake keeps fresh for 4 days if kept whole in the fridge. Store in airtight container if sliced into. Best served at room temperature.



For the doughnuts —

6 tbsp water

150 ml milk

1 egg, whisked

4 tbsp butter, melted

450g flour

60g sugar

1 tsp salt

1½ tsp yeast

Sunflower oil, to fry

For the strawberry chocolate —

100g white chocolate, melted

50 ml double cream

½ tsp strawberry essence

A drop of pink gel food colour

Toppings include fresh flowers, doughnuts sprinkles and petals

For the doughnuts —

On a clean counter top, place the flour, yeast, sugar and salt. Make a well in the centre and add the egg, water, melted butter and milk; mixing slowly with your fingers. Slowly form a ball and knead lightly. Lightly brush a steel/aluminium bowl with oil and place the doughnuts inside. Place a damp cloth on top to cover and leave the bowl aside for 1-2 hours to be doubled in size. 

Once the dough has risen, place on a lightly floured counter top and divide it in half. Using a roll pin roll out half of the dough to approximately ½ inch thickness. Cut out doughnuts using a cutter. Cut out square baking/parchment papers for each of the doughnuts and place a doughnut on top of each paper. Transfer on to cookie trays. Leave to rise in a warm spot. You can leave them in the oven at 50 C, along with a jug of boiling water placed inside the oven. Check every 20 minutes until the doughnuts have doubled in size.

Heat the oil to 180 C. You can test the oil with a small bit of leftover dough – watching to see if it fries immediately. If not, then the oil is still too cold. Drop the doughnuts one by one making sure not to overcrowd the frying pan. Fry until golden brown and turn. Remove and dry on kitchen towels. Cool and coat in chocolate and add the toppings.

For the frosting —

Melt white chocolate over double boiler or in the microwave (30 second blasts). Slightly heat up the cream and add to the chocolate. Mix well until there are no lumps. Dunk the doughnut in one at a time and leave on parchment paper. Decorate with toppings as desired. 

Keeps fresh for one day.


Makes approximately 30 macarons (60 shells)


100g egg whites

6 tbsp granulated sugar

200g icing sugar

100g almond flour


Line trays with baking sheets and have piping bags ready to with a circular tip nozzle. You can draw out 1 – 1½ in circles on the baking paper to act as a guide.

Whisk egg whites on a hand held electric mixer or a stand mixer. Add the sugar bit by bit as the mixture foams up. Whisk further 5 minutes until stiff and glossy. 

In the meantime, mix almond flour with icing sugar and sieve them together. Add the dry mix to the meringue. Gently fold until all the ingredients are combined. Be mindful to not over do this step — 50 to 60 folds at most. We are looking for a thick 'ribbony' stage.

Transfer to piping bag and pipe out the macarons. Once done, tap the tray thrice gently to let out air bubbles. Leave to dry for a few hours until hard to the touch.

Bake at 135 C for 12-15 minutes per tray. Once baked and cooled, pipe out snowflakes using royal icing. Fill with French buttercream or any topping you desire.



1 cup butter

250g sugar

1 egg

3 cups flour

1 tsp vanilla extract

Red food colouring


Cream butter and sugar on a stand mixer/hand held electric mixer. Add in the egg and mix well. Add the vanilla extract and then the flour bit by bit. Do not mix more than what is necessary. The dough should come together. 

Cut out a sheet of baking paper and place the dough on top. Cut out another piece and place on top of the dough. With a roller, flatten the dough evenly (like a rooti). Leave to chill in the fridge. 

Cut out shapes and bake for 8-10 minutes until lightly golden at 180 C. Once cooled, use royal icing to pipe out trees and gloves.

Keep stored in ziplock bags. Keeps fresh for 3 weeks.

Recipes and food styling by Saria Saguaro, The Flourist

Photo: Shahrear Kabir Heemel

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