I'm always looking for the next best vanilla or white cake recipe. I was looking for a cake that was fluffy, white and delicious! One that also pleased my fiance, as anything vanilla is his cup of tea. I'm the exact opposite, I will eat anything over loaded with chocolate. Hey, we have to keep the men happy sometimes too right? I think I may have finally found my vanilla cake go to recipe, I of course will test out other recipes to make my final decision but this one is pretty darn good! It's not your typical way of making your cake by creaming method (which is creaming the butter and sugar, adding your eggs etc.) It's different but it works. You MUST use real vanilla beans to get that awesome, sweet, vanilla flavor. They are expensive, but you won't be let down. The frosting is light, fluffy and velvety smooth. The trick to the frosting is to whip, whip, and whip some more until it looks pale and fluffy. This cake bakes pretty quickly and isn't a very tall cake. I love tall cakes, so I think next time I will double the recipe. I would also recommend eating it with in 2 days of baking as it starts to dry out.
Yield: One 2-layer, 8' round cake
6 large egg whites (6 ounces) at room temperature
1 cup whole milk ( 8.5 ounces) at room temperature
2 1/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract-I recommend using high quality extract
2 1/4 cups sifted cake flour (8 ounces)
1 3/4 cups sugar (12 ounces)
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter (6 ounces) at room temperature and cut into cubes
1. Preheat oven to 350°F Grease, and line pans with parchment paper
2. Combine and stir the egg whites, 1/4 cup of milk, and the vanilla in a small bowl or measuring cup. Set aside.
3. Combine the dry ingredients together on low speed in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle mixer. (I use the “stir” setting on my mixer) for 30 seconds.
4. Add the butter and remaining 3/4 cup of milk, and mix on low speed until just moistened. Increase to medium speed and mix for 1 1/2 minutes.
5. Scrape the sides of the bowl and begin to add the egg mixture in 3 separate batches; beat on medium speed for 20 seconds after each addition.
6. Divide the batter in two, spreading it evenly with a small offset palette knife. If you have a kitchen scale, weigh to ensure 2 even layers.
7. Bake 25-35 minutes or until a cake tester comes clean when inserted into the center. Be very careful to not over bake. Check cake at 20 minutes, but not before, and once you feel it’s almost ready, set the timer for 2 minute intervals. Let cool on racks for 10 minutes before loosening the sides with a small metal spatula, and invert onto greased racks, or wax paper. Gently turn cakes back up, so the tops are up and cool completely.
8. Wrap tightly and store at room temperature for up to 2 days, refrigerator for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 2 months. Best eaten the same day as baked.
Fluffy Vanilla Bean Frosting
3 sticks + 2 tablespoons (13 ounces) unsalted butter, softened and cut into cubes
3 cups sifted (/7 ounces) confectioners’ sugar (icing, powdered)
3 tablespoons milk
1 vanilla bean, scraped
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract-Recommend high quality vanilla
2. Add remaining ingredients and mix on low speed for 1 minute, then on medium speed for 6 minutes. Frosting will be very light, creamy, and fluffy.
*Recipe source: http://sweetapolita.com/2011/07/fluffy-vanilla-cake-with-whipped-vanilla-bean-frosting/