Bubble Bubble

To me assembling a Dobos Torte isn’t all that different from making a stack of pancakes, though the batter in truth is more akin to waffle batter. Like waffle batter, much of its bulk consists of egg foam…millions of tiny little bubbles which will heat up, expand, and leaven the cake.

Keeping those millions of bubbles from popping is the main challenge of this type of batter, and that means proper folding. For most folks, folding is just like stirring, except with a spatula. Good folding though is a very different process. I think of it like snow shoveling, taking a big wide scoop from the bottom of the bowl and gently turning it over onto the top, rotating the bowl as you go. However, since most folding involves incorporating something light (like whipped eggs whites) into something heavy (like a mixture of butter and yolks), you need to incorporate the two a bit first so they’ll blend. That means taking anywhere from a quarter to a third of the foam you’re working with and simply stirring it in (bubbles be damned!). But once that’s done it’s gentle over-and-over flipping from there on in.

One false assumption that most people have about folding is that the end batter must be 100% homogeneous. Not true. A few streaks or lumps are perfectly OK. Perfect homogeneity (gosh I love that word for some reason…homogeneity, it’s just fun to say) can and should be sacrificed in the interests of light, spongy cake.

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