The New Bakers Dozen
Joconde sheet with pate a cigarette imprints...

The The Bakers Dozen: Joconde sheet with pate a cigarette imprints...
By d. on Saturday, May 27, 2000 - 04:58 pm: Edit

Can anyone share a professional recipe for a flexible sponge sheet to be used on the sides of a cake with tulip paste imprints? I am currently using a modified chiffon sponge recipe. Very flexible and I use it for some layered pastries and rolls as well, but I need a sheet with more "close knit" pores. I've tried a standard separated egg sponge recipe but was not happy with the taste or the look(very irregular loo-king aircells or "pores", making the side of your cake look very unprofessional)What do you guys suggest? Thanks so much.

By Mikeh (Mikeh) on Saturday, May 27, 2000 - 05:58 pm: Edit

Here's my striped joconde recipe:

Yield = 4 full sheets

32 eggs
2# 11 oz. granulated sugar
2# 11 oz. almond meal
11 oz. bread flour
32 egg whites
11 oz. sugar
8 oz. melted butter

1) Combine sugar and almond meal.
2) Warm whole eggs and sugar/almond mixture and whip to maximum volume over a bain marie to 110degF.
3) Whip whites and sugar to a stiff, but not dry meringue.
4) Fold in 25% meringue.
5) Follow by folding in remaining 75% meringue.
6) Before meringue is full incorporated, fold in sifted 11 oz. of bread flour.
7) Before flour is thoroughly incorporated, fold in melted butter.
8) Bake in 400-425degF convection or 450degF deck oven for 8-10 minutes.

By d. on Saturday, May 27, 2000 - 09:16 pm: Edit

Mikeh, thanks!!! Will try out next week if I'm not slammed.

By W.DeBord on Saturday, May 27, 2000 - 11:37 pm: Edit

I just bought some "instant" pattern sheets to try with my joconde, you can use them with tuiles also. They have assorted colors as well as patterns. Is anyone using them...if so any tips or problems with using them?

By W.DeBord on Sunday, May 28, 2000 - 09:41 am: Edit

If you want another recipe also try Michel Rouxs' recipes for both, I really like his, it's very flexible and thin.
Let me know if you don't have his book and need a recipe.

By d. on Sunday, May 28, 2000 - 01:44 pm: Edit

Yes, W. I'd appreciate it. Don't have his book.

By tj on Sunday, May 28, 2000 - 08:27 pm: Edit

d., and mikeh...
here is a tip,
take mikeh`s recipe,which fits the general profile of a joconde batter, and just put ALL the ingredients ,exept the egg white and the 11 oz sugar,and whip on 2nd speed and after a minute swich to 3rd speed.whip the whites+sugar seperatly.fold in to the egg+butter+flour+sugar+almond mix.this is a big time saver, and a very desirable texture for joconde-nice and thin and flexible.bake only to the point that you can see a begining of coloration.flip over and peel silpat while still hot.
it is totaly unnessesary to seperate the ingredients or to worm up the eggs+sugar like for genoise.this will only add more air to the batter and you dont want that in a joconde.

By d. on Monday, May 29, 2000 - 11:36 am: Edit

Tj, thanks for your expertise. Will try it out. How long should I be mixing the egg-flour-butter-sugar mixture at 3rd speed? And would the same results be achieved spreading the joconde on parchment instead of silpat? And why do you peel it off while it's still hot?

By tj on Monday, May 29, 2000 - 12:41 pm: Edit

whip the eggs+sugar+flour+almonds+butter on 2nd speed fr 2 minutes until it look homogenic.then sswich to 3rd speed and whip for another 5 minutes.this will turn to a lighter color batter and rise alittle,just enough for the right the same time you whip in another mixer the egg whites+sugar on 3rd speed until stiff.and fold the 2 together.dont be careful while folding . you want a thin almost "broken" batter, cause it will make a thiner more even flip it while hot to release the joconde with the tuile design perfectly from the silpat.i dont use parchment cause it will stick more than silpat, and you want to have a nice clean design left on your joconde.

By W.DeBord on Tuesday, May 30, 2000 - 08:22 am: Edit

d. my recipe is at work...I'll post for you tomarrow morning. All of tjs' points sound like what I'm use's not a fluffy sponge cake at's thin and runny actually. I do use parchment and it can be a pain at times to remove although I thought it was more due to humidity, being a touch underdone or waiting too long to remove paper. Next time I'll follow tjs' method for sure!

By Mikeh (Mikeh) on Tuesday, May 30, 2000 - 08:33 am: Edit


I was just reading a tip on the weekend that separated egg foam sponges can be made by whipping the egg whites and then adding in the yolks one at a time, without any loss in volume. I'm definitely going to try this out.

By W.DeBord on Tuesday, May 30, 2000 - 08:49 am: Edit

I've done that Mikeh, the recipe I did it with worked great! I wish I could think of who I got it from because they worked all of their recipes that way and I was shocked because of how easy and non-traditional it was.

The guys are work make their batter for chilies relleno (sp?) that way...whip the whites stiff then pour in the yolks to incorporate...not a problem!

By Ramodeo (Ramodeo) on Tuesday, May 30, 2000 - 04:01 pm: Edit

My favorite new recipe is a sponge made like you guys have been talking about. Whip up the whites with the sugar (40 whites + 5 cups sugar) blend (40)yolks and vanilla, fold into whites in about 4 or 5 parts, then fold in flour - I think it's 5 cups. Works like a charm. And it's a housewife recipe......

By tj on Tuesday, May 30, 2000 - 08:00 pm: Edit

yes it works very well,i never whip the yolks seperatly,there is no need to and it makes another mixer bowl and whip dirty.i use it for lady fingers,same old recipe and just add the unwhipped yolks at the end and give it a 10 seconds whip in the egg whites.and also i make a very light walnut tort the same way.yolks at the end in to the whipped whites.

By momoreg on Wednesday, May 31, 2000 - 06:29 am: Edit

My best roulade sponge is done that way too.

By W.DeBord on Wednesday, May 31, 2000 - 07:58 am: Edit


Joconde Sponge:
13 oz. tant pour tant
5 eggs
5 whites
2 tbsp. superfine sugar
3 tbsp. butter melted
1/3 c. flour

500f oven. Beat tant pour tant & whole eggs to ribbon. Whip whites, then add sugar whipping until firm. Fold butter then flour into whole eggs mixture, then fold in whites. It's only 1/4" thick so don't be suprised how thin it is. It only takes about 5 min. (or less) in the oven.

Cigarette Paste:
7 tbsp. softened butter
1 c. xxx sugar
7 tbsp. egg whites
9 tbsp. flour

Cream butter and sugar until very smooth. Slowly add whites, then add flour. It should be very smooth. Then add food color or cocoa powder to acheive desired effect. This is enough paste for several sheet pans. Freeze for 10 min. before putting joconde on it.

By momoreg on Thursday, June 01, 2000 - 06:34 am: Edit

Don't you have to shape it immediately after it comes out of the oven? I've never worked with joconde, but I'm under the impression that it should cool a bit before using, and I'm thinking that the cigarette paste sets up faster. no?

By W.DeBord on Thursday, June 01, 2000 - 08:11 am: Edit

Use it when ever you's just like any other cake. The cigarette paste is so thin it becomes the joconde when baked, never becoming stiff. Occasionally I'll underbake it a bit, then it kind of sticks to the parchement. Also I find it best to not invert it and take off the orginal parchement until I'm ready to use it because the back side (the side with-out the pattern) will stick to what it's set upon. I'd follow tj's suggestion, and bake it on a silpat.

By tj on Thursday, June 01, 2000 - 03:01 pm: Edit

you can store joconde sheets for a day or two.but since it is so thin it tends to dry out fast.but you dont need to use it strait out of the oven.
i usualy use it the next day.and my walk in cooler keeps the joconde nice and moist on the exposed side.since we are talking about joconde for decorations , i should mention another method of making elaborated designs.i use it to make criss cross lines in a basket like pattern but with lines in 2 different colors.i first makes a design in one color and drag strait lines .i than take another silpat and make a strait line design in a different direction than the first silpat ,and in a different color.i freeze both silpats. i spread the jocond batter on one of the silpats, and freeze it hard.than peel it from the silpat and place it on the other silpat with the lines faced down on the other design.and bake can play around with grill designs+comb designs+silk screen design combinations for infinite patterns and looks...

By W.DeBord on Friday, June 02, 2000 - 07:46 am: Edit

You freeze the joconde in a raw state?

By tj on Friday, June 02, 2000 - 06:30 pm: Edit

exactly.than flip it on to the 2nd design silpat,and bake.

By d. on Saturday, June 03, 2000 - 09:41 pm: Edit

TJ, when we use the term "joconde", is it specifically understood that it is made with finely ground nuts or does the name apply to any kind of thin sponge sheet?

By tj on Sunday, June 04, 2000 - 07:22 pm: Edit

the name joconde has a short story behind it .it has to do with the italian name giocondo,which is the last name of mona lisa from the famous painting by leonardo de vinci(her husbands last name ,i believe).so the painting is refered to as la gioconda.and when de vinci moved to live in france he brought this painting with him, which is a master piece of this time period.and so the french call it "La Joconda".the pastry chefs adopted the name for this type of sponge cake to signify its importance for the pastry is traditionaly made with almonds only,never hazelnuts, and a thin soft texture,and sometimes with cocoa powder to make a chocolate joconde.i have seen some recipes that have no nuts at all, but i dont like them very much.......

By W.DeBord on Friday, June 09, 2000 - 08:40 am: Edit

I used purchased transfer sheets that are suppose to work for tuiles or joconde. Has anyone else tried these?

By momoreg on Thursday, July 06, 2000 - 09:58 pm: Edit

I made joconde for the first time, today, believe it or not. I had a hard time getting it off the silpat, and when I did, the chocolate decoration stayed mostly on the silpat, leaving just a light design on the cake. I was not using cigarette paste, but instead bitter chocolate, which I read somewhere in a recipe. Tomorrow I will try it with cigarette paste. In the meantime, can anyone out there suggest a method for frreing it up from the silpat? Also, W., how did your transfer sheets work out?

By Doucefrance (Doucefrance) on Friday, July 07, 2000 - 07:17 am: Edit

I usually let it cool, turn over the joconde and silpat on a baking paper and gently peel off the silpat. Using chocolate is not what makes it stick, I do that often. Did you let it cool?

By momoreg on Friday, July 07, 2000 - 05:47 pm: Edit

I tried removing the silpat at various stages of the cooling process, and it worked better when it was cool. Howwver, I remember tj saying to peel it off hot. Hmm...

Anyway, I tried a different recipe that worked much better, and the chocolate stayed on perfectly.

By tj on Sunday, July 09, 2000 - 04:58 pm: Edit

defenetly peel it off hot from the oven.
if it sticks to the silpat, you have two posibilities,either your recipe is incorrect, or you under bake your joconde.if you corectly bake the joconde and let it cool down you will have to peel it off carefuly and slowly.if you peel it straight from the oven you do it in one swift fast motion with no trace of the slightest sticking,or anything of the sort.also when you peel of joconde cold ,you have a very thin film left on your silpat ,wich does not happen when you peel it off very hot.using chocolate is no problem for joconde.i silk screen joconde with unsweetened choco liquor, or pate a glacer brune.

By tj on Sunday, July 09, 2000 - 05:00 pm: Edit

there is also a posibility that your silpat is not clean or very old, which are other causes to joconde sticking to it.

By momoreg on Sunday, July 09, 2000 - 10:12 pm: Edit

It could be that it's old. I considered that. Thanks for the tips. I think maybe they were underbaked as well. LIve and learn, right?

By tj on Monday, July 10, 2000 - 03:57 pm: Edit

the best way to bake the joconde is in a 200 deg.c. convection oven for 5-6 minutes,or 250 deg.c. deck it as it pick up some light golden color evenly all over the sheet.this is the time to pull it out and peel dont want to do any thing else but keeping an eye over it, cause its fast, and you might miss it and over bake the sheets.

By d. on Monday, July 17, 2000 - 05:50 pm: Edit

I tried Mikeh's joconde recipe today using Tj's methos of mixing. Worked great. Only problem I had is I scaled each sheet at 32 oz. and I think it came out too thin. What are you scaling your sheets at? I also had momoreg's problem of peeling off the silpat when hot and the cake got stuck, particularly in the white part of the silpat. Baked some with parchment and didn't have a problem removing except it wasn't as smooth and it had ridge marks because of the air bubbles under the parchment. Our silpat mats are quite new, so maybe I underbaked the sheets?

By W.DeBord on Tuesday, July 18, 2000 - 07:40 am: Edit

d. it sounds like you under baked a bit. I don't know...I use very old mats (the only place it will stick is where the surface was broken/frayed from folding)and they don't stick provided I don't under bake...If I underbake by just a min. or two it WILL stick.

Really thin does work best (unless it's so fragile you can't work with it). I accidental over scaled using Hermes recipe (he doesn't give scaling weights) and it wouldn't hold to the filling when sliced.

I think the sticking also relates back to the recipe used. I've tried several now, each worked fine no major problems...but I did think Hermes' released the cleanest. Typical pastry item you get to like the feel of one recipe over another.

By tj on Tuesday, July 18, 2000 - 03:06 pm: Edit

joconde is not an easy type of batter to master.
there are quite a few recipes i have ,some with more and less almonds vs sugar have no nuts at all.the mixing is an important part of the need to mix all ingerdiants to an even emulsified ,semi light batter ,then add the melted butter that should not be hot.and then fold in the egg whites that are whipped quite stif.during the folding, you work in strong strokes, that will deflate the batter alittle but it is important not to deflate it too much.this is where your experience with joconde will come in to play.this folding will greatly determin the texture of the finished sheets of cake.too light (underfolding)and the sheets will puff up and be thicker and with more unwanted air bubles.too runny or heavy (overfolding),and you will have a watery runny mass that will have a texture of rubber...

By d. on Wednesday, July 19, 2000 - 03:27 pm: Edit

Tj, I did like the texture and my batter was neither too slack not too thick. I probably underbaked them because they were a bit too wet. Mikeh's recipe yields 4 sheets which scale at about 3# 7 oz. each, and that seems a tad too thick to me. I also tried out the joconde in The Art of Cake by Bugat& Healy and it was very similar except it had just a bit more flour. They scale theirs at about 2#. I made a pyramid cake out of them. Compared to the chiffon sheets that I usually use, the joconde was more dense and a little less flexible. I think I'm going to try to look for a recipe without almonds or any kind of nuts.
TJ, can you point me in the right direction for such a recipe?

By tj on Wednesday, July 19, 2000 - 03:48 pm: Edit

what kind of chiffon did you use ? do you use it over decorative cigarette batter?

By d. on Wednesday, July 19, 2000 - 10:55 pm: Edit

Based on a standard chiffon cake but I cut back on the baking powder. Mix yolks,water,oil,vanilla and stir in dry ingredients. Make a stiff meringue and fold into the yolk mixture. It's very similar to a joconde except the oil gives it more flexibility so it won't break when assembling roulades. I use it for plain sheets and I have tried over cigarette batter, but sometimes I have had problems of the cigarette paste separating after it is baked.

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