A classic Valentine cake with surprising flavor to top off your Valentine's French Menu (Option #2). There are the traditional ingredients- butter, vanilla, strawberries- but add sour cream, coconut, and almond, and this classic gets new life. Sometimes cake recipes focus so much on the frosting flavor that the cake itself becomes an afterthought. It's obvious that Liz Edmunds has carefully crafted both elements of her creation. I'm gaining a lot of respect for her taste and attention to detail as I cook through her book.
Speaking of her book, have you entered the giveaway yet? Today's your last chance! Tomorrow the winners will be announced!
In the meantime, here's the recipe for that cake.
|If I'd had more strawberries I would have taken these little slivers and covered the sides for a little extra oomph of strawberry flavor.|
Strawberries and Cream Cake
by Liz Edmunds
Time: 1 hour
Make cakes a day ahead of time or freeze and frost when ready. You will need two 9-inch cake pans.
18.25 ounce box white cake mix
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1 1/3 cups water, room temperature
1 cup sour cream
2 Tablespoons coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
4 large egg whites
Fresh Strawberry Frosting
1 cup fresh strawberries, cleaned and rinsed, about 7 berries
1/3 cup butter, room temperature
4 oz. (1/2 cup) cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
4 cups powdered sugar
Place oven rack in the middle of your oven. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
Spray two 9-inch round cake pans with cooking oil. Cut parchment paper to the size of the bottom of the cake pan. (I place my cake pan on top of the paper and draw a circle around the pan, then cut and place the paper inside the pan.) Spray again.
In a large mixing bowl, add cake mix flour, sugar, salt and stir together. Add water, sour cream, coconut oil, vanilla and almond extracts, and stir until combined. Add 4 egg whites - one at a time, stirring after each one until the ingredients are thoroughly mixed.
Divide the batter evenly between the 2 pans which will each be 3/4 full. Place in the middle rach of your oven and bake for 35 to 38 min. or until a wooden skewer comes out clean.
Immediately when the baked cakes are taken out of the oven, put 2 paper towels together and push the raised surfaces down until even with, or a teeny bit lower than the edge of the pan. Make sure the levels are smooth and uniform. Push them down firm enough to ensure that the cake stays where you push it and that it doesn't spring back up.
After hot cakes are pushed down, invert them onto cooling racks. Remove the paper. Place the hot pans back over the layers and let them cook with the pans on the cake to keep the moisture and steam in.
Frost when cool.
Fresh Strawberry Frosting
Process berries in your food processor or blender until smooth. Strain the puree. Discard the seeds. You should end up with 1/3 cup of puree.
Beat the butter, cream cheese, vanilla and almond extract together with an electric mixer. Add puree. Gradually add the powdered sugar and mix until smooth at medium speed.
Spread evenly over the 2 layers and sides of cake. Place frosted cake in the refrigerator. Serve cold.
May use raspberries in place of strawberries. If you use a strawberry cake mix use 4 whole eggs. Use raspberry extract in place of almond.
This cake OR the Chocolate Ganache Cake from the first menu would work well with the Food Nanny Fillet Mignon. In fact ganache is French, so when I post all the recipes in the Menus & Timelines page, I might swap the cakes officially. Either way, you choose which you'd like for which menu and have at. And ENJOY! You've got two great new menus to choose for next weekend's festivities.
Tomorrow you'll get a new Music Playlist to accompany this menu, which includes music from a new favorite of mine, Carla Bruni. Just you wait.