Stunning dessert you can replicate at home.

As many of us continue to stay indoors to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, our kitchens are now getting a good workout as we brush up on our baking skills by trying out all those recipes we previously never had time for.

In Japan, one baker has been using this time to work on a stunning dessert with intricate details inspired by a pond inspired by French impressionist painter, Claude Monet.

▼ Monet’s Pond in Seki City, Gifu Prefecture, draws crowds of tourists throughout the year.

Image: Wikipedia/Hmori1960.earthbound

Image: Wikipedia/Hmori1960.earthbound

Fed underground by mountain springwater, the landscape and hues of this pond in Gifu is so reminiscent of Monet’s Water Lilies series it looks like one of the artist’s paintings come to life. Now, the beauty of the pond has been captured in the form of a cake by talented baker and Twitter user @kanan8582.

The bottom half of the cake is a sumptuous cheesecake, while the top half is Monet’s Pond, complete with floral accents, rosemary and thyme “grasses”, and a couple of beautifully made koi fish.

@kanan8582 says the koi fish were made with “pura chocolate” (“plastic chocolate”) which is entirely edible. This type of chocolate mix, commonly available in Japan, gets its name from the fact that it’s easily mouldable, and is widely used in the baking world to create durable chocolate decorations that look like plastic.

▼ @kanan8582 has made koi from marzipan as well.

The hand-moulded chocolate fish stand up better than marzipan in the jelly-like topping, although they should be kept cold for best results. If you can’t find pura chocolate or marzipan at your local supermarket, @kanan8582 mentions that Vietnamese spring roll wrappers (for making fresh spring rolls, not fried) can also be used to create the fish.

As soon as @kanan8582 tweeted out photos of the gorgeous creation, it quickly went viral, earning over 150,000 likes and 35,000 retweets.

People instantly fell in love with the cake, leaving comments like:

“Wow, this is edible? I’d never be able to eat such a work of art!”
“What a well made cake – you could sell it at a department store sweets section for a high price!”
“I sighed with delight when I saw these photos!”
“Looking at this cake is just as calming as gazing at a lake.”
“Such a sight for sore eyes. Now I can’t wait to visit the pond in Gifu again!”

The cake truly is a work of art, and though @kanan8582 hasn’t revealed the exact recipe for creating the pond-like topping, there does appear to be a way we can replicate it at home. While the moulding of the fish will certainly take some time to master, the recipe for this rainbow milk gelatin cake shows how to create a jelly-like topping just like the one used for Monet’s Pond.

@kanan8582 says a mixture of Blue Curacao and peach-flavoured clear still water was used to add flavour and colour to the gelatin topping, with a little bit of green food colouring mixed in to achieve the desired hue.

So next time you find yourself making a cheesecake — that doesn’t look like a giant chunk of Tom and Jerry Swiss cheese — don’t forget to whip out the gelatin and get creative with an artsy translucent topping of your own. Happy baking!

Source, featured image: Twitter/@kanan8582 
Insert images: Twitter/@kanan8582 (1, 2)
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