How to Make A Fabulous Dragon Fruit, Passion Fruit, and Papaya Cake

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With a creamy and delicate consistency, this tropical layered dragon fruit passion fruit, and papaya cake is hard to resist.
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The cake is my favorite kind of dessert as you can also see on the blog in the Desserts category. There’s just something about creamy cheesecake that makes me incredibly happy. 

I was in the mood for something fruity, I’ve been thinking about this combination for some time, and I said to myself that it is finally time to implement it, so I came up with this recipe for Dragon fruit, Passion fruit, Papaya, white chocolate, and vegan caramel cake. 

I put all these goodies to good use and this fabulous and delicious cake came out!

As I mentioned in this morning’s article, today is the 4th anniversary of  Birdy’s Health Dose blog, and I promised you, my dear readers, that I would give you a “gift”, a gift that has become a tradition starting with the 2nd anniversary of the blog, the gift is in the form of this second article with this fabulous anniversary recipe.

Although you could use another kind of fruit, these three fruits work fabulously together. The dragon fruit adds a sweet and unique flavor, the passion fruit gives it a great taste, and the papaya adds a nice texture. Also, the chocolate and the vegan caramel add creaminess,

It’s so creamy, refreshing, and flavorful that you’ll want to eat the tray too 😊)). And if you sit and think about what ingredients are used, it can’t be anything else than mega delicious and very good-looking.

I can’t describe in words the taste of these 5 combinations, because they don’t resemble anything, what I can say is that it’s out of this world! so, either take my word for it or try to replicate it! I don’t know why, but I have the impression that some of you won’t take my word for it! 😊))).

Even if it will take some time to make this fabulous cake (especially the decorations) believe me: It’s worth it! the result will make your taste buds go crazy, it will take you to tropical islands.

Before presenting the ingredients and how to prepare this fabulous cake, let’s see some information and the benefits of the main ingredients: dragon fruit, passion fruit, and papaya.

Dragon Fruit

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Dragon Fruits, or Pitaya have sweet, juicy, and flavorful pulp and numerous small, black seeds like poppy seeds. They are among the more exotic fruits but are instantly loved for their refreshing aroma and zest.

Nutritional Information

Dragon fruit is a nutritious food with a low-calorie content. It is considered a healthy food because it is rich in vitamins vitamin A, B, and C, minerals (calcium, sodium, phosphorus, iron, and magnesium), and large amounts of fiber, but also fatty acids such as Omega 3 and Omega 6.

100 g of dragon fruit provides 60 calories

6 Benefits of Dragon Fruit

• Supports heart health

• Prevents premature aging

• Helps strengthen immunity

• Supports digestion

• May prevent diabetes

Hydrates the skin.

Passion fruit

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Passion fruit is loved and appreciated for its slightly sour taste and its special fragrance, but above all for the wide range of vitamins and essential acids it contains. Passion fruit is small, round, and full of seeds, but has many benefits.

How it can be consumed:

Besides the fact that you can eat the fruits raw, as such because they have a sweet, refreshing, and particularly aromatic taste, they can be used for: toppings for ice creams and warm puddings; natural juices from citrus fruits, apples, and berries, sweet yogurts or Greek yogurts, to which they give a delicious flavor; jams combined with berries, strawberries or blackberries.

Nutritional Information

Passion fruit is a fruit with few calories, containing vitamins A and C, and minerals (calcium, iron, magnesium, and potassium). The pulp of the fruit is a good source of antioxidants and fiber.

The low-calorie content allows this fruit to be easily included in weight-loss diets. The iron in the composition of passion fruit is easily absorbed by the body due to the presence of vitamin C.

Passion fruit contains 97 kcal per 100g.

8 Benefits of Passion Fruit

• Normalizes temporary increases in blood pressure

• Strengthens the cardiovascular system

• Improve your vision

• Relieves spasms and pains in the stomach area

• Helps strengthen the immune system

• Normalizes the functioning of the liver, kidneys, and urinary organs

• Promotes the elimination of harmful components from the body

• Relieves pain in muscles and joints.

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Papaya

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You will instantly fall in love with the papaya fruit as soon as you know its effect on health. From the tip of the hair to the toes, papaya is an energy provider for everything!

With a sweet taste and a buttery consistency, papaya can do wonders for almost every organ in your body. 

It can be consumed as such, together with other fruits, in fruit salad, juice can be obtained, or used in smoothies. It can also be used for desserts such as cakes or ice cream.

Nutritional Information

It contains alpha and beta-carotene, lutein, vitamins B, C, and E, vitamin K, calcium,  potassium, and lycopene, an antioxidant found in high concentrations in tomatoes as well.

8 Benefits of Papaya

• Papaya is loaded with nutrients

• It has strong antioxidant effects

• Can reduce the risk of cancer

• Can improve heart health

• Can fight inflammation

• May improve digestion

• Protects against skin damage

• It is effective for weight loss.

Let’s see what is the order of the cake layers:

1st Layer – Cream Cheese + Papaya Puree

2nd Layer – Cream Cheese + Unsweetened White Chocolate 

3rd Layer – Cream Cheese + Passion Fruit

4th Layer – Cream Cheese + Vegan Caramel

5th Layer – Cream Cheese + Dragon Fruit

INGREDIENTS :

Sponge ingredients:

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•   650 g whole flour 

•   70 g cocoa powder 

•   11/2 tsp baking powder 

•   2 tsp baking soda 

•   1 tsp coffee

•   1 pinch of salt

•   320 ml milk 

•   1 tbsp vinegar 

•   100 g Stevia sweetener

•   130 ml oil 

•   350 g Greek yogurt

•   1 tsp lemon essence 

•   The zest from 1 lemon.

These are the ingredients for 1 top, you’ll need 2 tops 2 x 21 cm.

Ingredients for the filling: 

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•   400 g Mascarpone

•   400 ml unsweetened whipped cream (min 30%)

•   60 g of Stevia sweetener

•   23 g of gelatin 

•   2 tsp of lemon essence

•   1 tbsp lemon juice

•   100 g vegan unsweetened white chocolate (melted and tempered).

•   1 Papaya

•   3 Passion fruits

•   1 Dragon fruit.

Ingredients for the salted vegan caramel:

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•   125 ml maple syrup

•   150 g full-fat  coconut milk (see here my homemade vegan coconut milk recipe), or almond milk (see here my homemade vegan almond milk recipe)

•   2 tbsp coconut oil

•   1/2 tsp almond extract

•   A pinch of sea salt.

From these ingredients, you will get about 130 g of vegan caramel.

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Recommended read: My Delicious Homemade Vegan Dairy-Free Sugar-Free Paleo Salted Caramel Sauce – 2 Recipes

Ingredients for the butter cheese cream icing – enough for 2 21 cm tops

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•   400 g unsalted butter (80%) – at room temperature

•   150 g powdered Stevia sweetener

•   1 tsp vanilla essence

•   50 g unsweetened white chocolate (melted and tempered)

•   400 g Mascarpone (coold from the frifge).

Ingredients for decoration:

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•   750 g of Navy Blue fondant + 50 g for the covering of the foam spheres 

•   300 g of Dark Blue fondant + 50 g for the covering of the foam spheres 

•   300 g of Blue Sky fondant + 50 g for the covering of the foam spheres 

•   300 g of White fondant + 50 g for the covering of the foam spheres 

•   ½ tsp edible gold dust

•   Foam spheres: 5 cm, 4 cm, 3 cm, 2 cm.

Note: I’m not eating fondant that is made of sugar and full of additives, I’m using it strictly for decoration.

Ingredients for the sail shape (Substitute For Isomalt)

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·       150 g Sugar

·         50 g Water

·         25 g Glucose Syrup

·         Dark blue, sky blue, turquoise, and white bio-food coloring

·          Edible Gold Dust mixed with water (for painting the edges of the sail). 

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INSTRUCTIONS: for this dragon fruit, passion fruit, and papaya cake:

Make the wet sponge:

1.    Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease with butter a 21 cm springform cake pan and line with baking paper. 

2.    In a bowl combine the milk with the vinegar, stir, then set aside for a few minutes. 

3.    In a large bowl sift all the dry ingredients: flour, cocoa, coffee, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

4.    In a separate bowl, we will start working on our wet ingredients: pour the stevia and the oil and mix with a whisk very well so that a lot of air is incorporated into the sponge.

5.    Now, pour the Greek yogurt, lemon zest, and lemon essence and mix them all.

6.    It’s time to mix all the ingredients, so pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and incorporate them with a spatula, then, at the end add the milk/ vinegar mix into the mixture and mix them well.

7.    Our batter is ready to start pouring it into the springform pan and it goes into the oven to bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.

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8.    Remove sides from the cake pan and transfer to a cooling rack to cool. 

 Note: For this cake, I used a 21 cm springform pan.

Make the papaya puree:

9.   Take the well-ripened papaya peel it, remove the seeds, and cut it into cubes or strips, then put it in a saucepan, add 1 tbsp of lemon juice, and boil at medium heat stirring constantly.

10.   After 2 minutes take the papaya pulp off the heat, leave it to cool for a few minutes, then blend. Related to the passion fruit and pitaya, I just take them out of their shells.

Make the filling:

11.   The gelatin is left to hydrate in 120 ml of water for 10 minutes.

12.   In a bowl add the heavy cream and the Stevia sweetener and mix until it gets a creamy consistency.

13.   Add the Mascarpone and bloomed gelatin and mix for 1 minute until it reaches a creamy consistency, finally add salt, lemon juice, and vanilla essence.

14.   Divide the cream into 5 equal parts and add papaya puree, passion fruit pulp, dragon fruit pulp, vegan caramel, and white chocolate to each bowl, and mix lightly with a spatula in each bowl until completely incorporated.

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Assembling the cake: 

15.   Now we are going to cut every batch of the cake into 3 slices with the use of a bread/ cake knife. Place your hand on top of the sponge, put the knife in, and just carefully go around, in, and out. 

16.   Now let’s apply the 5 layers of the filling. With the help of a spatula spread over the first layer of sponge the filling. The first layer will be the cream with papaya puree, followed by the layer with white chocolate, then the passion fruit puree cream, the vegan caramel layer, and the last layer of cream with dragon fruit puree.

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17.   Now, after filling the cake with the cream, put it in the freezer for 1 hour to set.

Meantime let’s make the buttercream icing.

Make the buttercream icing:

18.   Mix in a bowl with the hand mixer, the butter together with the powdered Stevia for 5 minutes at medium speed until you get a creamy composition. Scrape the edges of the vessel.

19.   Add in the composition the vanilla essence and the melted and cooled white chocolate and incorporate them with the help of a spatula. In the end, also incorporate the cream cheese. Don’t use the mixer, only the spatula.

Our creamy buttercream icing is ready to use.

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Icing the cake

20.   Spread the buttercream on the cake and level with the help of a scraper as much as possible at this stage when the buttercream is soft. Refrigerate the cake for 2 hours to harden.

21.   Take the cake out of the fridge, the buttercream has hardened, and now we can start to finish it with a spatula, patiently, until it is smooth everywhere. Refrigerate the cake for an hour to harden.

Note: I advise you to be very patient at this stage of finishing, where you need to add more cream, or where you need to remove more, do not rush, and if in some places, the cream is not hardened enough, it is preferable to add to the fridge again for a few minutes.

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Covering the cake with fondant: 

22.   The cake must be as level as possible, on the entire surface. With the help of a silicone brush, wet the entire cake to facilitate sticking the fondant, then set it aside.

23.   We need a clean, non-sticky, and necessarily level work surface. You can use a silicone mat if you have one. First, we knead the sugar paste until it becomes very elastic. Then dust the work surface with sifted cornstarch.

24.   We stretch from the middle outwards with the help of a rolling pin, always turning the paste, to the left or to the right, to be sure that it does not stick to the work surface. If necessary, powder the table/ mat silicone. We continue to stretch until we reach a thickness of approximately 4-5 mm.

25.   After finishing rolling, dust the upper surface of the paste a little and roll it on the rolling pin.

26.   We take out our cake dressed in buttercream from the refrigerator and start rolling the fondant on the cake, measuring so that the dough reaches all sides.

27.   Then we start to level the paste on the side with the help of the bridge of the palm, not with the fingers, being careful not to form creases. For this reason, we need a very elastic paste, and not brittle, to fold it into the shape we want.

28.   After making sure that we spread the paste on all sides, cut off the excess. Then we level the paste with a cake smoother. Do not neglect this step because otherwise, you will not get a smooth and perfect surface.

Now we can decorate the cake according to our preferences.

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Decorating the cake with the fondant stripes:

29.   The same procedure as in point 25 for the navy blue, dark blue, blue sky, and white fondant pieces.

30.   After you have stretched the pasta well, cut it into strips 68 cm long (then divide it in half) and 4 cm wide, cut one end of the strip crosswise (the same operation for each of the 4 colors). The order of colors will be starting with navy blue at the base of the cake, dark blue, and blue sky, and end with white at the top of the cake.

31.   Now we start gluing the colored fondant stripes by stretching them along the cake and passing one of the ends over the other (the outside of each strip will remain on the outside of the cake.

32.   Add the next strip following the same operation (here it’s up to our imagination, we can play with their modeling, we can for example model the edges of the strip in the form of waves), and so on until we reach the top of the cake. After you finish put the cake in the fridge for 1-2 hours so that the strips harden.

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33.   Remove the cake from the fridge. In a bowl, mix edible gold dust with water and start painting the edges of the stripes with a brush.

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34.   As decorations we can also use foam spheres of 2, 3, and 4 cm in diameter, cover them in fondant of various colors, and of them paint them with the help of a brush with gold dust.

35.   Insert the spheres into the cake above the strips, from place to place.

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Make the cake topper sail:

36.   Pour water into a pot, add Stevia, and glucose syrup stir over medium heat until the Stevia and glucose are completely melted, and bring to a boil.

37.   The syrup should boil for 5-10 minutes.

38.   Let the syrup cool for 30 seconds, then pour it on a silicone mat/ baking paper, add the desired food coloring inside the syrup and mix with a toothpick, then place the silicone on top of a bowl/ bear bottle and fasten the edges of the mat/ baking paper together with clothespins.

39.   Let it cool for a few hours, or even better until 2nd day. 

Note A little advice: when you unripe the sail from the silicone mat/baking paper take your time, because if you hurry the possibility of breaking the sail is quite high. 

40.   After the mold has cooled, combine edible gold dust with water and paint the edges of the sail with a brush.

41.   Place the sail topper on top of the cake and this fabulous cake is finished!

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And here is a section through this beautiful anniversary cake!

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Note: The vegan caramel should be made a day before the cake.

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Last Thoughts:

The cake is one of the most beloved desserts, and I’ve found a way to make it even better. 

I’ve been having a lot of fun experimenting with different fruit combinations lately, and I’m totally in love with the results of this one. 

The dragon fruit has a mild flavor that is somewhat similar to cucumber. The passion fruit has an intense flavor that is very citrusy, with a hint of floral undertones. The papaya is sweet, almost like melon, but with a little bit of tartness to it.

If you love the tropical flavors of dragon fruit, passion fruit, and papaya then this is the perfect dessert recipe for you. This cake is out of this world and is also the best way to end a meal.

And though it’s more time-consuming to make than other cake recipes, it’s worth making if you’re looking for a special occasion dessert that’s different from the standard chocolate cake.

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