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Pandan Butter Sponge Cake

This is the kind of soft buttery sponge cake that you would find at your favorite Asian market or bakery. The pandan flavor is subtle and aromatic. Overall, the cake and whipped cream is not very sweet, the way that my family enjoys it.
It can be dressed up with additional whipped frosting for celebratory events or simply enjoyed with your afternoon tea.


  • Roux method – this sponge cake utilizes the roux method. The fatty butter basically coats the flour and reduces the formation of gluten, which yields a smoother and softer sponge cake.
  • Don’t grease the pan – similar to the chiffon cake, you don’t want grease the pan/baking sheet. The cake will rise by “crawling” up the side of the baking sheet.
  • Pandan essence – if using the pandan essence, you may have to add a drop or two of green food coloring for a greener cake. You can also use vanilla extract and make a vanilla cake!
  • Pandan whipped cream – if you want pandan whipped cream, use a few drops of the pandan paste. Remember with the paste, less is more.

Pandan Butter Sponge Cake

Time: 30 minutes

Serves: 6-8

1 ½ cup (170g) cake flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 stick (115g) butter
½ cup (115g) whole milk
8 large eggs
½ teaspoon pandan extract or 1 ½ teaspoon pandan essence
¾ cup (130g) sugar
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

• Preheat the oven to 325F. Line two quarter baking sheet (9×13) with parchment paper, but do not grease them.
• Separate the eggs into two large bowls and set aside.
• In a small bowl sift the cake flour and salt together and set it aside.
• Heat a small saucepan over medium low heat. Melt the butter. Once the butter has completely melted. Add the flour mixture. Turn off the heat and let the flour mixture and butter cook over the residual heat for another minute or two.
• Add the cooked flour mixture (roux) into the bowl with the egg yolks. Whisk together and add milk. Making sure to whisk until batter is completely smooth. Add pandan essence or paste. Whisk well.
• Make the meringue by beating the egg whites with cream of tartar using an electric mixer or stand mixer. Once it gets frothy, slowly add in the sugar beat until you get stiff peaks. Fold the meringue into the batter, a third at a time. Fold to incorporate but try not to over mix.
• Divide the batter between the two baking sheets. Bake for 13-15 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.
• Remove from the oven. You’ll see that the cake naturally pulls from the side of the baking sheets. Run a spatula around the edges and turn the cake onto cooling racks and let cool completely before frosting with your favorite frosting.

Whipped Cream

1 ½ cup (375 ml) heavy whipping cream
4-5 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar (or to taste)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• Using a stand mixer or electric hand mixer, whip the cream with confectioner’s sugar and vanilla extract until you get deep tracks, and you get stiff peaks. Do not over whip as you will get butter.
• Spread or pipe on cake.

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