Last year, my friend made me a great cake that was decorated beautifully with little fondant sunflowers all over it. The cake was awesome. Now keep in mind, my friend is a cake designer. She makes the most amazing cakes in so many different shapes and flavors. On top of that, they taste divine. They're light and moist and then sometimes, she will add a surprise ingredient or filling that gives it that extra special something. The cakes really are great. She has already promised to make my wedding cake...and I will not let her forget that she has already promised.
Fast forward to this year. My schedule has been so busy recently, that I was unable to see my girlfriend and unfortunately my mom and I don't live in the same city. That means that if I wanted a birthday cake, I was going to have to make it myself. And with all the cooking and collecting of recipes I've done over the past year, a box cake or even a store bought cake was not going to be acceptable.
Since baking is one of those things I have to talk my way into (remember, I consider myself a chef not a baker), I decided to finally try this recipe that I've held on to for about a year now. I thought this would be as good a time as any to venture out and try this cake. Pink being my favorite color even adds to the appropriateness of making this cake for my born day.
I saw this Pink Lady cake on smitten kitchen and immediately feel in love with it. I couldn't recall ever having strawberry cake but it looked so pretty and....it's a pink cake for Pete's sake. Deb (over at smitten kitchen) warns readers not to taste the batter while making the cake because it would be hard to stop and boy was she was right. The batter tastes just like strawberry ice cream. So addicting and a great precursor to this cake.
Well, I did end up seeing my mother, for mother's day, and served the cake as dessert with the brunch I made. She and Mr. Foodie REALLY liked the cake. This cake was surprisingly good. I say surprisingly because cake with pureed strawberries it not a common cake around this house. Now I warn you, with the cream cheese frosting, this cake is really rich (3 sticks of butter. 8 egg whites and 3 cups of sugar not including the cream cheese frosting). But it is good and goes perfectly with a nice glass of cold milk.
So if you want to try a different celebratory cake, this is definitely one you should try. But if it's a really big or nice occasion and your in the Atlanta area, I urge you to check out my girlfriend's cake design business, Sweet Tooth Cake Design (she also has a page on facebook since I'm sure you're a member). Either way, you won't be disappointed with the outcome.
Pink Lady Cake (Strawberry Cake)
4 1/2 cups of cake flour
3 cups of sugar
5 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
12 oz. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups of pureed frozen strawberries
8 egg whites
2/3 cup milk
2 drops of red food coloring
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and lightly flour three round 9-inch cake pans
Put the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in large mixing bowl. With the mixer on low speed, mix for 30 seconds. Add the butter and strawberry puree and blend the ingredients. Increase the speed to medium and mix until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. The batter will look like strawberry ice cream
In a separate large bowl, whisk together the egg whites, milk and red food coloring. Add the mixture to the batter in 3 additions, mixing to incorporate each addition. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Divide the batter into the three buttered pans
Bake the cakes for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Let the layers cool in their pan for 10 minutes. Then invert the cake and let cool on wire racks. Let cool completely before icing, approximately one hour (I was too anxious and didn't wait long enough. This is why my icing looks like it melting, because it is)
Cream Cheese Frosting: 3 - 8 oz. packages of cream cheese, at room temperature
1 1/2 stick (3/4 cup) of unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 cups of powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter. When combined, mix in the vanilla extract. Then add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time.
Place one cake layer on cake board or platter. Spread approximately 2/3 cup on top of first layer. spreading it evenly to the edge of the cake. Repeat with the second layer. Add the top layer and frost the top and sides of the cake with the remaining frosting (you can reserve extra to tint with red food coloring if you want to decorate the cake). Slice and enjoy with a glass of milk.
adapted by Deb of smittenkitchen.com, originally from Sky High