Good Intentions

2

June 3, 2013 by kkeerr

Saturday was my good buddy Brae’s birthday and a celebration was in order.  Brae is a beer lover and home brewer so I got her a mixed-six…
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…and then I individually wrapped the bottles and bedazzled the hell out of the carrier.  I also offered to bake Brae a cake.  I like to bake and it was a great way to ensure that I would be eating cake on Saturday.  Brae said she was a “white cake, white frosting” type of girl; I also prefer over something chocolate or god help us banana cream.  We settled on a layer cake of vanilla cake, fresh strawberries and jam, and strawberry butter cream frosting.
Here is the recipe I uses for the cake, it’s pretty standard.  This recipe yield two 9 inch round cakes that I then cut in half for the layers.
Vanilla Cake:
3 cups flour
¾ tsp salt
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
3 cups sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
7 large eggs
2 TBSP vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream
6 tbsp plus ⅓ cup seedless strawberry jam
approximately 2 lbs strawberries, hulled, sliced
Frosting:
2 8-oz packages of cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
4 cups powdered sugar
½ cup seedless strawberry jam
¾ cup chilled heavy whipping cream

I split this cake making up among two days.  On Friday night I baked the cake part and then on Saturday morning I made the frosting and assembled.
Here are the directions.  Again, they are pretty standard.

For the frosting: Put a small/medium bowl in the freezer to chill. In a separate large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Beat in sugar, then jam. Remove that chilled bowl from the freezer and beat cream in that chilled bowl until peaks form. Fold whipped cream into frosting. Cover; chill for a couple of hours until it’s firm enough to spread.

For the cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Butter and flour two 9-inch cake pans with 2-inch high sides.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda.
  4. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Add sour cream, and beat for 30 seconds. Add flour mixture in three additions, beating to blend after each addition. Divide batter into prepared pans.
  5. Bake about 50 min. or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Allow cakes to cool then slice in half.  If you stick the cakes in the freezer for a bit then slice with a long serrated knife they cut in half pretty easily.

Assembling the cake is next.

  1. Spread 3 tbsp of strawberry jam over the cake, then spread ¾ cup of the frosting over the jam. (Next time I will just combine these two things and then spread it on the cake. Arrange ¾ cup of the sliced strawberries on top of the frosting in a single layer. Repeat two more times.
  2. Top with remaining cake layer and spread the rest of the frosting on the cake.
  3. Decorate the outside of the cake with the remaining sliced strawberries if you are feeling fancy.  I was not.  I bedazzled a 6-pack carrier so I was all fancied out.
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Getting the layers ready for stacking.

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IMG_20130601_153014The cake may not have been the prettiest cake ever, but the components tasted good and it certainly wasn’t the ugliest cake.  I felt I could present this cake to Brae and her family and not be totally embarrassed by it.
The skewers were to help the layers stay together on the 40 minute drive to Brae’s house.  The drive…that’s where this plan literally starts to fall apart.  I didn’t have anything to carry cake in so the plan was to loosely wrap it in foil and Austin would ride with it on his lap.  That plan didn’t work (go figure, right).  The cake made it about 20 miles before Austins lap had frosting on it.  We pulled over to a gas station and proceeded to try to clean up the mess and salvage the cake.  I attempted to try to basically re-stack the layers, but the mess only grew and the cake became unsalvageable. Frosting was all over my hands, down my arms and on my shorts as I waddled (waddling seemed an efficient way to walk without getting more frosting on me) the cake past the folks getting gas to dump the light pink mess in the trash.
I was disappointed.  And sticky.  However, valuable lessons were learned.  1) I could use a proper cake carrying device, then at least the mess would have been contained.  2) Maybe just make a sheet cake, or brownies, or cookies, or anything really that isn’t four layers if you have to drive 40 minutes on a 70 degree day in a car with no A/C.

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2 thoughts on “Good Intentions

  1. Lilly Sue says:

    That cake looks yummy!

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