Wednesday, July 1, 2009
TWD - Perfect Party Cake
I haven't posted in a couple of weeks. I'm sure many of you are experiencing "summer", which is something I have heard about but have yet to actually experience yet this year. Rain, rain, rain, ain't it great? I tell you what it's not good for - taking pictures. Inspiration. Wanting to cook! Moving enough to take a deep breath is enough to make you sweaty as a warthog's backside, so actually cooking is not something I've been doing a lot of. Scrambled eggs, sandwiches, and ice cream are my main fair these days. (And frogurt - that will definitely be posted soon!)
So with that in mind, I wasn't looking too forward to baking a damn cake this week for TWD, but I am so glad I did! Carol of mix, mix, stir, stir chose Dorie's Perfect Party Cake, and oh god, what a cake. I had made this one already for Obama's Inauguration and took it to work, and I thought then it was one of the best cakes I've ever made. This cake is light and springy, with a refreshing lemony, tangy taste.
You bake two 8 inch cakes, and then when cooled, cut them in two to give four layers total. I just used a long serrated breadknife. My layers weren't perfect, but they were kinda even. The crumb is amazing; it's like pulling apart cotton balls. See all the little holes in there? That's exactly what you're going for. The cake is moist and springy without being too delicate - holds up great to syrups, fruit, whipped cream, etc. Or hey, all three if you're really going for it, and really, why not?
Since I made this cake before, I wanted to play around with it a bit. Our strawberries are just coming into season, so instead of raspberry jam I spread sliced strawberries on the layers. Also, I found Dorie's icing to be WAY buttery (and a little fussy to make). I wanted to keep the icing white and pretty, so I used her cream cheese icing instead.
And there she is. It looks like a hot mess, I know, but I swear it tastes great. A cake decorator I'm not. I was taking it to my auntie's house, so I had to get on the road and go. Halfway there, when the top part slide RIGHT FRICKIN' OFF, I realized I should have chilled it first. Ah well. Anybody who turns down free cake, even if it half fell apart, is no friend of mine.
This cake is really straight forward, so I don't have a lot to say about it. I used more lemon zest than called for, as I didn't have lemon extract. I skipped the coconut, too, cuz I just don't like it. Also, I saw some people had problems with not having enough buttercream; I think the main problem with that is you really need to let the egg whites heat up so they'll increase in volume.
See that? I saved that piece for me. Mmmmmm. It really set up well in the fridge, and since it was so damn sticky out, it was super. Mmmmm. Cake for supper. The pleasures of being an adult, eh? Mmmmmmmm.