Ohhhhh yeah.....simple ingredients for a delicious oh-so-scrumptious BERRY BIRTHDAY kind of cake. Happiness. Simple and true happiness to make someone that you love a birthday cake that is so yummy and brings BIG smiles to every one's faces. This is truly one my most favorite things in life to do....to make birthday cakes for those that I adore and love. This time around it was a cake for my beloved Jeff. Along with the fact that it was his 40th BDay cake (and boy did he take it well...some people freak with such mile stone birthdays...he embraced it with happiness and ease - I hope to do the same in just a couple of years).
When I asked Jeff what kind of cake he wanted for his birthday after a little thought he said, "no chocolate....how about something with raspberries and a vanilla cake." Right away I went to Joy the Baker's blog knowing that I could find a cake recipe that included all of Jeff's requests. I found the recipe I am about to share with you below.......
Berry Birthday Cake
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened to room temp
1 3/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
1 tbsp vanilla extract (make sure it is REAL vanilla extract...you don't want it to be fake in this recipe)
1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped out (unfortunately I didn't have a vanilla bean so instead I just used a little extra vanilla extract)
2 3/4 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1-2 cups of berries of your choice for decoration/taste/beauty
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour two 8" (or 9") round cake pans and set aside. If you wish you can also make this recipe into cupcakes instead of a cake - makes 24.
2. Cream butter and sugar on medium speed for 3-5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula to ensure that everything is well mixed.
3. Add eggs, one at a time - beating for 1 minute after each addition.
4. In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt (this is where Jolie was able to help make her Daddy's BDay cake :-)
5. In another bowl combine milk, vanilla extract and vanilla bean seeds.
6. With a mixer on low speed alternate adding the flour mixture and the milk mixture in 3 batches. If you are using a standing mixer you may need to cover your mixing bowl with a clean kitchen towel when incorporating the flour. Start and end with the flour mixture. When the batter is just combined, shut off the mixer and thoroughly incorporate the dough with a rubber spatula
7. Divide the batter between the two pans. I dotted my cakes with berries to bake right into the cake.
Bake for 35-40 minutes or until a pale golden color on top of cake - keep in mind that a 9" round cake will not take as long to bake an 8" cake for it is not as thick. Insert a cake tester in center of cakes...if it comes out clean the cakes are done. If making cupcakes only bake for 25-30 minutes.
Cool completely before decorating with your choice of frosting and berries. I made this frosting....
Vanilla Whipped Buttercream Frosting
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup sifted flour
1 1/2 tbsp REAL vanilla extract
1. Cream the butter on medium speed, 3-5 minutes. Add sugar and beat on high speed until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Stop the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat again.
2. In a small saucepan combine 1/4 cup milk with the sifted flour and vanilla extract. Whisk together until there are no lumps.
3. Over medium heat slowly and add the remaining 3/4 cup milk, whisking constantly. Cook until the mixture comes to a low boil.
4. Reduce heat to low and continue mixing with a whisk until mixture starts to thicken - this can happen very fast....you definitely have to be paying attention to this step.
5. When mixture starts to thicken, immediately remove saucepan from heat but continue to stir. Not only does this stirring allow the mixture to continue to cook but it also keeps it from getting lumpy.
6. Whisk for a couple minutes...this allows you to have a smooth consistency along with helping to cool down the mixture before you add it to the butter/sugar mixture. The mixture must be at room temperature before added to the butter/sugar mixture. If you want you can always pop it in the freezer for a couple of minutes to help speed up the process.
7. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the flour/milk mixture to the butter/sugar mixture. Increase the speed to medium and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy - 3-5 minutes.
8. Frost your cake as desired. I put berries and frosting between cake layers.....
....and then frosted the top and sides of cake. The frosting takes a little work but oh my is it dee-lish!!!
Such a beautifully happy and DELICIOUS cake!!!
Happy Berry Birthday Cake Baking!
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