Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Steamed sponge cake with pandan coconut pastry cream (Mount Fuji sponge cake)

Mount Fuji sponge cake -- Bánh bông lan Phú Sĩ

Watch my video how to make Mount Fuji sponge cake on the Van's Kitchen Youtube

Blog in Vietnamese: Video cách làm bánh bông lan Phú Sĩ

Judging by the name of this cake, you might think it came from Japan. But take a peek at the ingredients--pandan leaf extract and coconut milk are not typically used in Japan. This is actually a popular snack in Vietnam. It's a great representation of a mix between Western-style dessert and traditional Vietnamese flavors. The cake is made with eggs, sugar and flour, but the baking style is a little different. Ovens are rarely found in Vietnamese kitchens even to this day, so we use a steaming method to bake this sponge cake.

The pastry cream is just a dream combined with the two distinctly Vietnamese flavors that go so well together: coconut milk and pandan leaf extract (sometimes called "Asian vanilla"). Add to that the light, soft, moist sponge cake, and this recipe has it all!

Mount Fuji sponge cake -- Bánh bông lan Phú Sĩ
(About 3-6 portions)

Sponge cake:
2 large eggs (114 g)
⅔ cup (80 g) cake flour or enriched bleached all-purpose flour
¼ cup (50 g) sugar
1 ½ tbsp (20 g) milk
1 ½ tbsp (20 g) vegetable oil
⅛ tsp baking powder
½ tsp vanilla extract
a pinch of salt

Pandan coconut pastry cream:
2 large eggs (114 g)
100 g tapioca flour
½ cup (110 g) butter
⅓  cup (70 g) sugar
⅞ cup (200 g) pandan extract
⅞ cup (200 g) coconut milk
½ cup fresh finely shredded coconut


Making the sponge cake:

Prepare the steamer.
Grease the cake mold with oil or melted butter.
Mix together salt, baking powder and flour.
Whip the egg whites until they’re foamy. Gradually add half of the sugar, and continue whisking until soft peaks form.
Beat the egg yolks with the remaining sugar until they're thick, fluffy and light colored. Add oil, milk, and vanilla. Mix well.
Sift the flour mixture over the batter, half at a time, mix well. Then sift the remaining flour, and mix again until combined.
Add one fourth of the beaten egg whites, and gently fold into the batter, then add the rest of the whites, folding again until incorporated. Do not over-mix the batter, or it will deflate.
Pour the batter into the mold, smoothing the top. Then place in the boiling steamer. Steam for 10 minutes, or longer depending on how big your mold is.
Open the lid one time at halfway through to get rid of the steaming water on the lid.
Test for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake. If it comes out clean, the cake is done. Remove from the steamer and allow the cake to cool in the mold for 10 minutes. Then run a knife or a flat spatula around the inside of the pan and remove the cake.
Let it cool completely, then slice the cake into half.

Making the pandan coconut pastry cream:
Whisk the egg until it’s light in color. Add the pandan juice, mix well. Then strain to get rid of any egg lumps. 
Add the flour, stir to combine.
In a heavy saucepan set on medium low heat, stir half of the sugar into the coconut milk, and bring to a boil. Then pour in the egg mixture in a thin stream while mixing.
Return the mixture to the saucepan, and keep stirring so it doesn’t curdle and scorch on the bottom. Stir until the mixture thickens and comes to a boil, turn off the heat. Then stir in the butter, mixing until the butter is completely blended in and the pastry cream becomes smooth. Then immediately spread on the cake. 
Sprinkle with shredded coconut, then refrigerate until chilled, and serve!

Xin mời (^o^)
Mount Fuji sponge cake -- Bánh bông lan Phú Sĩ
♥Here are a few of the tools I used in the video: White Classic 3-speed mixer Anchor Hocking Oven Bake and Food preparation Set
Mount Fuji sponge cake -- Bánh bông lan Phú Sĩ


  1. hi Van , you are an amazing chef, I love all your recipes, your videos instructions and written recipes are excellent, clear and precise, easy to follow, please keep doing the great job in sharing your amazing recipes . I have not returned to VN for 30 some years so missed alot authentic dishes, desserts as well as savory.,including many local dishes from BAC, TRUNG NAM
    thanks for your great work

  2. Hi Van, this recipe looks wonderful. I would like to make it but I don't have pandan juice or pandan leaves. However I have pandan extract as a paste. It is possible to make the cream with it? If so how much should I put?