One of my favorite things about being a domestic goddess is that I have the time to cook. I mean really cook; think up menus, research recipes and ingredients, and of course, bring the whole thing to life! The last two weeks I've been working on a cake recipe that doesn't use traditional frosting, something that is fresh and light tasting yet still a truly satisfying homespun cake. I had a vision in my head...now I just had to bring it to life!
I knew that I wanted to use real whipped cream, and strawberries. In my vision, the best cake to accompany these ingredients would be a simple yet delicious vanilla flavoured yellow cake. I searched the internet for "low sugar cakes" and finally found a recipe in my Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook that called for 1 3/4 cups of white sugar, which is lower than most cakes, and as good as I figured I would get without sacrificing on flavour.
One of the things about being a cook in a childless household is that there are only two of us to consume my creations. Oh, we put out the word, and we get a lot of takers, but sometimes it's hard to resist the siren call of a plate full of brownies, or a platter piled high with slices of lemon coffee cake. So I try to plan my baking projects around events, or when company is coming, or when my husband is scheduled to work (so I can send the goodies off with him). When we received an invitation to attend a birthday barbecue, I quickly volunteered to be the cake maker! It was go time!
Armed with my ingredients (and a new hand mixer, wheeee!!) I started. First I made the cake that I had found in my Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook. It turned out wonderful! I used an angel food tube pan instead of the two layer cake pans, and it turned out great, I just had to extend to the cooking time to approximately 50 minutes. You can check out the recipe here.
While the cake was baking, I started mixing up whipped cream. Real whipped cream is one of life's true pleasures, and if you've never had it, pick up a carton of whipping cream, break out your beaters, and start whipping. Here's a recipe for Sweetened Whipped Cream to get you started. This recipe calls for confectioners sugar, and many call for powdered sugar; I used regular white sugar and it turned out fine. What you do want to follow to the letter are the instructions on keeping everything cold; this is the key to whipped cream success.
I tinted one batch of cream a light pink using Wilton concentrated food colour gel. Then I made another batch, also tinted pink, but I used a bit of powdered sugar and beat the cream until it was a bit firmer. The final batch, though, was a little bit of whipped cream heaven called Strawberry Whipped Cream Frosting. I quickly whipped up a Strawberry Puree to use in the recipe and I knew as soon as I tasted it that the strawberry cream was the winner.
I used all three creams for this cake. I used the Strawberry Whipped Cream Frosting to fill the hole of the cake, I iced the cake with the lightly whipped pink tinted cream, and I filled a frosting bag with the stiffer tinted pink cream and piped rosettes around the base of the cake. I then decorated the cake with strawberries; a pile of berries in the center of the cake over the berry cream, and strawberry halves tucked into the rosettes around the base of the cake. Here's how it looked:
Not too shabby, eh? I was quite pleased! I love when the image in my brain works out in real life!
I'll be making this cake again soon, but next time, I'll be using the Strawberry Whipped Cream Frosting to ice and fill the entire cake! But I'll be honest with you...you could skip the cake entirely and just eat the Strawberry Whipped Cream out of the mixing bowl. Be sure to lick the beaters! Yum....
Today I am linking up to Just Something I Whipped Up Monday which is hosted by The Girl Creative.