Apr 142011

So sad.


Twice i failed.

Failed to get the beautiful purple, pinkish hue for my sweet potato chiffon cake. :(

I have no idea what went wrong. I did all i could to prevent the batter colour from changing during the second attempt.. alas… it was not meant to be. Sigh.


Guess what?

I’d be trying again — my third and last attempt. IF, the cake is still this colour, i’ll wave my white flag then.

Sweet Potato Chiffon Cake

from Florence

(17cm chiffon tube pan)

100g purple sweet potato (steam and mashed)
3 tbsp milk

3 egg yolks
20g brown sugar
pinch of salt
50ml corn oil
3 tbsp water

85g cake flour

4 egg whites
50g sugar
1/2 tsp cream of tartar — i omitted this

Diced steamed sweet potato cubes (optional) — and this as well

1. Steam sweet potato, add milk to it and mashed till fine or blend it in a blender.
2. Mix all ingredients in (A) till well blended. Add in (1) and mix well. Sieve in (B) and mixed till smooth and lump-free. If batter is on the dry side, add a tablespoonful of water – some purple sweet potatoes can be quite dry.
3. Beat egg whites in (C) till stiff.
4. Add half portion of egg white mixture into egg yolk mixture and mix well with a spatula.

when i thought everything would be okaayy…

5. Pour egg yolk mixture into the remaining white and mix till well-combined.

until i saw this… YIKES!

6. Pour batter into chiffon pan. Bang the cake pan a couple of times to release air bubbles in the batter.
7. Bake at 180C for 30 minutes or till cooked.
8. Invert the cake and cool it completely in the tin.


So upset i was that i had no mood for styling.

So upset i was that i anyhow cut the cake when i was getting it out.
(see pic below)

So upset i was that i didn’t wanna eat the cake after that.. but errrr, in the end, i did lah of course! I don’t say no to cakes! :P

see the strange colour conbination? quite something huh? hee!

  19 Responses to “Sweet Potato Chiffon Cake — FAIL!”

  1. Looks fine to me, don’t be so hard on yourself!

  2. for me, your chiffon still look nice and good.

  3. i think the purple colour is wonderful! i wonder if “bleaching” the mashed potato with something acidic will change the colour of it.

  4. This is beautiful!!! Love the golden brown crust and texture. For mine, i added in some small orange sweet potato cubes in it for colour contrast. :)

  5. I love that you posted your “FAIL”!!! But it doesn’t look like a fail to me! Good luck next time. :)

  6. OMG. I struggled with this same problem for so long! But I finally figured it out. It’s all in the type of purple sweet potato you use. There is one kind (bigger, fatter, gray skin, found in chinese and korean markets) that is purple inside but when you mix with the egg yolks it will turn a blue/gray when baked. There is another kind or purple sweet potato (darkish skin and looks almost like the purple hue is trying to come out, skinny and slim, found in japanese markets) that does not turn color when mixed with egg yolks. it will just be a light purple. and if you add lemon juice, it will be a pink. You can read about it in my post here http://kirbiecravings.com/2011/02/purple-sweet-potato-chiffon-cake.html

  7. I am wondering if the sweet potato would have a pigment that oxidises when heated up above 100C… if that is the case, then, probably the purple will not be attainable….so not your fault!

  8. Looks like the potato mixture reacted to the acid in the cream of tartar (guessing here). I’m not sure if letting the mixture cool down before adding it to the egg whites would help (this is assuming it’s still warm from the steaming potatoes). Whatever the case, don’t raise the white flag Sherie! There’s still some purple in your cake so keep trying.

  9. I agree with pickyin. Try leaving the cream of tartar out next time. It’s purpose is to stabilize the egg whites but you might be able to get away without it, though you might not get the volume or stability you are used to. (Purple pigments often act as acid/base indicators and will change colours in the presence of acid.) Anyway, it’s worth a shot! Can’t wait to see how it goes.

  10. john + sonia : awww.. thank you! :)

    grub : i’m thinking of that too! bleaching it with lemon juice for my attempt 3!

    ellena : if my third attempt still this colour, u are more than welcome to take the cake away from me! haha!

    celia : thank you!

    kirbie : trust me, i was at your site for the longest time ever after my first attempt. hahaha! i was reading every sentence of yours. but u know what? the sweet potato i used is exactly the sweet potato that u used in your successful attempt. now.. is that strange or what?!?! mine changed colour only when it touched the egg white.. it was fine with egg yolks. :(

    shirley : the colour changed immediately when it touches the egg white.. before i could even bake it. sigh.

    pickyin + ms.v : good observation! however, i totally skipped the cream of tartar as i am no fan. so… i really have no idea what went wrong!

    pickyin : by the time i blended the sweet potato, it cooled down completely by itself already. if my third attempt remains the same, i’ll raise the white flag for sure.. haha! moving on to another chiffon cake :P

  11. To me, it looks fine! But I am not professional in this (baking thing). I saw some comments that gave “from experience” advice. For me, I can only eat lah! I don’t say no to cakes as well, esp chiffon cakes and esp when I don’t have to do the baking.

  12. From the cut of that slice of chiffon, it looks really fine. I am not comforting you or anything…it does look fine, esp. that you just used 3 eggs for 100 grams of sweet potatoes and 85 grams of flour…pretty heavy, huh?

  13. The texture still looks good! I have the same problem with purple sweet potato when used in cakes.

  14. Aww, that’s too bad then. Hmm, perhaps try the lemon? The lemon juice will turn the batter a dark pink. this may prevent the batter from turning blue?

  15. tigerfish : hahaha! got cake, just eat lah! –> our slogan ;)

    angie : ahhh… the chiffon cake is all good except for the colour hence FAIL! :P

    jeannie : revealing the answer soon!

    kirbie : found out WHY! *yay* :D

  16. AH….. this is where you failed in color? Well, it could pass for earl grey..lol

  17. elle : Muahahahahahaa!!

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