Recipe by Squirelly Cakes, Premium Member, and edited by Sarah Phillips © 2007 Sarah Phillips CraftyBaking.com
Variations: Chocolate Wedding Cake; Strawberry Wedding Cake
This makes a wonderful moist cake, perfect for stacking and making wedding cakes from. It can be baked in multiple flavors, and baked in different size cake pans. It's not an especially high rising cake and take care when folding in the beaten egg whites in the end. I like to freeze my cakes at least overnight, before icing once defrosted. This really does set the crumb. Refrigerating a cake does not do the same - it will dry the cake, instead. I have included a Chocolate Ganache Filling Recipe and a Vanilla Buttercream Recipe.
SARAH SAYS: I always use ingredients cold from the refrigerator. They warm quickly from the beater attachments. I find it is unnecessary to use room temperature ingredients and by doing so, the action of the mixing blades with over-warm the ingredients cuasing the cake not to rise to its fullest.
CAKE RECIPE HELP / WEDDING CAKE RECIPE HELP
3 1/4 cups bleached cake flour, sifted*; spoon into measuring cup, level to rim and then, sift. Do not use self-rising cake flour.
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole or 2% milk
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter, cold
1 3/4 cups superfine or regular sugar
5 large egg whites; separate eggs while cold
2 tablespoons superfine or regular sugar
SQUIRELLY CAKES SAYS: In Canada when we cannot get the cake flour unless you have a registered business and can shop from the wholesale places. At least here in Ottawa, I cannot get it, it might be different in Quebec or Toronto. These stores may sell to the general public. But for grocery stores, we are only able to get the cake and pastry flour. Which is fine when using Canuck recipes made for it. Not so fine for American recipes though. One thing I have found though, is sifting our Canadian Cake and Pastry flour before measuring it for use in American recipes, makes for a much nicer cake. I think it has a tendency to clump and so sifting, you are using less. I have had much better results since I started sifting it. Before, the cakes tended to be a bit dry.
This recipe calls for beaten eggs whites. I have two mixing bowls and flat paddle attachments for my KitchenAid mixer. This way, I don't have to wash the bowl used for mixing the batter in when it comes time to beat the egg whites. I don't have to worry about leaving an excess fat coating in the bowl when I beat the whites, which makes them deflate or not whip to their fullest!
1. Position the oven shelf in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. (If using dark, nonstick baking pans or ovenproof, Pyrex glass pans, be sure to reduce the oven heat by 25 degrees F).
Grease pans with shortening or nonstick pan spray. Line bottom of pan with greased parchment paper. Then, add some flour and shake out excess.
2. Sift together the measured flour, baking powder and salt together into a medium sized bowl and set aside. Stir the milk and vanilla together in a small bowl and set aside.
SARAH SAYS: I measure my milk in a 2 cup measuring cup and then stir in the vanilla. This way, I don't have to dirty another bowl when combining. The measuring cup also allows me easily pour the milk into the mixing bowl when the recipe calls for it.
3. Beat the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, on low until softened. (If the butter is cold, it will warm quickly from the beaters - taking about 60 seconds). Add the sugar in a steady stream at the side of the bowl. Increase speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes until light yellow and fluffy. Stop the mixer and scrape the side and bottom of the bowl with a large rubber spatula.
4. With the mixer on low, add the flour mixture in 3 equal portions, alternating with the milk in 2 equal portions, beginning and ending with the flour. (If the milk is cold, the batter will curdle slightly. It's ok. It will come together when you add the flour.)
Add the flour and liquid ingredients in increments quickly; do not wait in between additions too long as you don't want to overmix the batter.
After completing the last addition of flour, stop the mixer, and scrape the side and bottom of the bowl with a large rubber spatula. Then, let the mixer run for 30 seconds on LOW. STOP the mixer. Do NOT overmix or worry if you see any wisps of flour remaining. Set aside in a cool place, but do not refrigerate.
5. In a clean mixing bowl, free from any fat or grease, beat the egg whites: Fit the mixer with the whisk attachment, and beat the egg whites and sugar on low until foamy. Increase the mixer speed to medium-high until the soft peak stage is reached when the peaks of the whites droop slightly, when the beater is turned off and lifted. Then, increase the mixer speed to HIGH until FIRM peaks just form. DO NOT OVERBEAT. The egg white foam Beat until the egg whites are stiff and glossy. If egg whites are beaten to dry and dull, they are overbeaten -- Watch carefully, because egg whites can go from stiff to dry and overbeaten in as little as 30 seconds.
SARAH SAYS: Sugar stabilizes the egg whites and helps them not deflate as readily when folded into the cake batter in the next step. In essence, the overall recipe will fail less. When beating egg whites for a cake recipe, it is important to increase the mixing speeds slowly to get the maximum volume from the whites. The whites do not need to be at room temperature to beat to their fullest. They take longer to beat when cold, but they will reach their eventual goal.
6. Fold the egg whites into the batter: Stir the batter gently right before folding in the beaten egg whites so it is completely mixed. Stir a big spoonful of egg whites into the mixture and gently stir with your whisk to lighten the batter. With a rubber scraper, scoop about 1/3 of the remaining egg whites on top of the batter and fold until the ingredients are combined. Repeat two more times. Stop when the batter looks evenly streaked with beaten egg whites and batter.
7. Carefully scoop the batter equally into the prepared pans and bake until toothpick inserted in the middle and removed, comes out with a few moist crumbs but not batter. Let cool 15 minutes in the pan on wire rack before unmolding to a wire cake rack. Carefully peel parchment paper off the cake bottom and flip cakes over to cool with the right side up. Cool cakes completely before frosting or storing.
Cake can be stored, well wrapped, at room temperature for 3 to 5 days, or frozen for one to two months. Storage with frosting depends on the type.
Reduce cake flour to 2 1/2 cups and add 3/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder; do not substitute the cocoa powder with natural. After measuring, sift in with flour, baking powder and salt. The chocolate version rises higher than the white or strawberry version because of the starch in the cocoa.
Replace 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk with 1 cup of strawberry puree plus 2 tablespoons milk.
To make Strawberry puree: Pulse fresh or frozen, defrosted strawberries in a food processor. Cook on stovetop until with 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice. The strawberry version rises less high than the white or chocolate version because of the pectin in the fruit.
SARAH SAYS: It does not have a strong strawberry flavor because it is baked in. Brush with strawberry glaze to enhance its flavor.
WEDDING CAKE INSTRUCTIONS
Recipe Yield = 6 cups; not a high rising cake
Best results from using 2 inch deep cake pans or filling 3 inch deep pans, half-way.
Bake each flavor of the recipe, 4 times each to make a stacked cake with the following pans. Fill 3-inch pans half-full:
4 x 3- inch deep round - 1 cup batter - 30 minutes at 350 degrees F
6 x 3- inch deep round pan - 3 cups batter - 30 minutes at 350 degrees F
8 x 3- inch deep round - 5 cups batter - 40 minutes at 350 degrees F = about 2 1/2 inch cake, leveled
10 x 3- inch round - 6 cups batter, 30 minutes at 350 degrees F
12 x 3- inch round - 9 cups batter, 35 minutes at 350 degrees F
Totals 24 cups. Recipe yield = 6 cups x 4 recipes = 24 The chocolate cake rises most, followed by the white layer and the strawberry layer is the less high.
Cupcakes - Fill about 3/4 full. 18-23 minutes baking time.
GANACHE FILLING RECIPE
They assemble using ganache on the white cake layer as the bottom layer, then chocolate cake as the centre layer with strawberry jam spread on it, then the strawberry cake. They cover it thinly with buttercream and then cover the cakes in fondant. They used a total of 10 pounds of fondant to cover the cakes.
12 ounces of bittersweet chocolate (preferrably 61% cacao), chopped into 1/4-inch evenly sized pieces
1 quart (32 ounces) heavy cream
Place chocolate in heatproof bowl and set it aside. Heat cream in a medium size heavy bottomed saucepan until just boiling. Pour over chocolate and let it stand for 15 minutes. Then whisk until smooth. Let cool completely whisking occasionally Cover with plastic wrap making sure wrap is pressed tightly against the chocolate surface and refrigerate overnight. Pour into bowl of your electric mixer and beat on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Do not overmix. Takes about 4 minutes, I would use paddle attachment to avoid getting too much air in it. One recipe makes about 5 cups. For this cake you need less than 2 cups so you could halve the recipe.
VANILLA BUTTERCREAM RECIPE
Makes 15 cups - need 13 1/4 cups under fondant
6 large eggs, separated
1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar
2 cups whole or 2% milk
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
6 cups (12 sticks) unsalted butter
Put yolks and 1/2 cup of the sugar into the bowl of your electric mixer fitted with the wire whisk attachment. Beat on high speed until pale in colour and thickened, about 2-3 minutes.
Over low-medium heat, in a medium saucepan, bring milk and vanilla to a boil . Remove from heat and whisk about 1/3 of the hot mixture into the yolk mixture. Then pour this mixture back into the hot mixture in the saucepan, whisking to combine. Return to a medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture reaches 185 degrees F on an instant read thermometer. Remove from heat. and strain in sieve to another bowl. Refrigerate until cool.
Place butter into bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on medium-high. about 6, until pale and fluffy. Mix in the chilled custard mixture (the egg yolk mixture you have refrigerated until cool).
Heat egg whites and remaining 1 cup of sugar in another bowl of an electric mixer set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk constantly until sugar has dissolved. Attach bowl to mixer fitted with clean whisk attachment and beat on high speed until stiff peaks form.
Add egg-white mixture to butter mixture and beat on medium-high speed until smooth. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days, returning to room temperature and beating again before using.
To assemble they use for each tier: - Need 1 1/3 cups strawberry jam
4 inch tier - 1 tbsp. ganache, 1 tbsp. strawberry jam, 3/4 cup buttercream icing, 1 pound of fondant
6 inch tier - 3 tbsp. of ganache, 3 tbsp. jam, 1 1/2 cups of buttercream icing, 1 1/2 pounds of fondant
8 inch tier - 1/4 cup ganache, 1/4 cup jam, 2 1/2 cups of buttercream icing, 2 pounds fondant
10 inch tier - 1/3 cup ganache, 1/3 cup jam, 3 1/2 cups buttercream icing, 2 1/2 pounds fondant
12 inch tier - 1/2 cup ganache, 1/2 cup jam, 5 cups buttercream icing, 3 pounds fondant
Cake and photo by Squirrelly Cakes, Premium Member
Squirrelly Cakes, Premium Member, Says: "The Neapolitan Cake recipe. Put it together as a 9 inch high cake as each layer was three inches. But I found it far too high so I took it apart and cut down the layers. It was around 6-7 inches high.
Simple cake for a daughter's birthday. Polka dots and bow are fondant with a bit of Gum-tex powder mixed in. Pink luster dust and a bit of pearl dust used on bow. Used my scrapbooking scissors to cut out fondant ribbons for the sides.