IT'S MY B-DAY!! Sound the trumpets! Alert the Bouche du roi(*)!
Instead of grumbling about getting OLD (no, no...not old, just more MATURE. That's right. keep denying it...keep denying it...) I'll just shut up and not talk about it at all. *grin*
Aaanyway. This year, I was very much in a French mood (oh COME ON. I'm in a French mood HALF the time! The other half being the Japanese mood!) - so I decided to keep things as French as possible.
mixed berry mousse encased in decorative joconde and topped with glazed mixed berries
Part of their "Art Cakes" series. It's a beautifully crafted cake - and the name is inspiring as well. "Larme de Gauguin"...we're of course, speaking of the great post-impressionist French painter Henri-Paul Gauguin here. La Renaissance always name cakes in their art cakes series after famous painters - Monet, Van Gogh, and Picasso to name a few.
Speaking of La Renaissance, it's still my favorite French patisserie in Sydney. I don't care if that Adriano Zumbo guy (who runs the Adriano Zumbo patisserie) gets all the limelight lately, but to me, classic French patisserie is still the only way to go. Yup, I'm quite the traditionalist when it comes to French patisserie. But it doesn't mean that I'm rigidly conservative. I do love new inventions, but within certain boundaries.
I always felt that French patisserie has reached a point of perfection centuries ago. Treats like the macarons, fraisier, mille-feuille, mont blanc, gateau opera, etc should be considered the staples and people should work based on those classics. It's when they create abominations like the TARO CHEESECAKE and claim them as French pastry I begin to severely object.
Anyway, enough about that - let's talk about this Larme de Gauguin (pronounced LARhm-duh-gah-GAHN). Well, it literally means "Gauguin's tears", hence the teardrop shape. It's very delightful - although just a tad on the sour side for my palate. However, the mousse part is a medley of berries - I can literally taste them dancing on my mouth. How delightful! ...and the Joconde (it's that thin sponge cake sheet that encases the mousse) is blissfully lined with raspberry syrup. There's a layer of coconut compote between layers of the mousse, and it perfectly goes with the whole cake.
and oh...here's a shot of my birthday noodle. I hate to display this photo, but being Chinese- Indonesian, having noodles on your birthday is just as important as having your cake. More important, even. It is said that the long strands of the noodles symbolize long life. BTW, It was 7 am when I cut my birthday cake, so do you think I have time preparing a real, home-made fried noodle? No siree. It's just INDOMIE (Indonesian instant noodles)! Actually, it's Indomie Mie Keriting Goreng Special (Indomie special instant curly fried noodles) instead of the ubiquitous, regular Indomie Mie Goreng, because it's my B-DAY!!! (and it has to be special...)
(*) La Bouche du roi: the royal catering department in the French royal household. Literally means "The king's mouth"