Posh Nosh: Chalk Farm christmas cakes

By Tan Hsueh Yun

The Straits Times

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2013

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When you sample enough Christmas food, you start to notice little things. A particularly good buttercream, for example, or a lacklustre log that barely tastes of the flavour the spin doctors say are in the cake.

When I take a bite of Chalk Farm's Hazelnut Cake ( $70 for a 1kg loaf), I swoon immediately because the caramelised hazelnuts piled artfully on the cake are coated in a shiny, slightly bitter caramel. It requires skill to take caramelisation to the edge without turning the sugar into a burnt mess.

Underneath is a sponge cake with ground-roasted hazelnuts worked into the batter and a chocolate-hazelnut frosting. Everything is in fine balance.

A new offering this year is Harvest Moon Log ($88), a soft golden orange sponge filled with a seriously good cream cheese frosting. It is spiked with homemade kumquat brandy and flavoured with maple syrup. Texture comes from chopped dark chocolate, candied orange and lemon peel and chopped dates folded into the cheese.

Coffee bean-scented whipped cream coats the log and it is topped with toasted chopped pecans and a sprinkling of gold dust.

It sounds terribly rich but then I break my tasting rule for this column: I finish the entire slice and cut myself another one.

Christmas cakes, from Chalk Farm, B1-K24 Paragon. Order online at www.thechalkfarm.com at least three days in advance or call 6235-2872.

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