I made a cake

I dont cook very much. I quite like it - but i never feel I get enough time to make it anything other than a chore.

A few weeks ago my friend Annette offered me a lesson in making italian meringue buttercream icing. We attempted this amazing cake and it actually turned out beautifully. 


Armed with my new found meringue skills, i put the KitchenAId that we recieved as a wedding present from my folks and made a cake for a moring tea at work

It is a strawberry cake, with italian meringue buttercream icing and it is delicious. I made a few variations to the recipe, so I am calling it MY Strawberry meringue cake, which is as follows

ALI'S STRAWBERRY CAKE

Yields: 1 2-layer cake or 24 cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • ¾ cup strawberry puree (you can make this from putting either fresh strawberries or frozen ones that have been thawed into the blender)
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk, at room temperature
  • 6 large egg whites, room temperature 
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp strawberry extract
  • 2 1/4 cup plain flour
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 12 Tbsp unsalted butter (170g), at room temp

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 180degrees and grease and flour two 25cm pans 
  2. Combine strawberry puree, coconut milk, egg, vanilla and mix with fork until well blended.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add flour, sugar, baking powder and salt and mix to combine.
  4. Beat at slow speed and add butter.
  5. Mix until combined and resembling moist crumbs .
  6. Add wet ingredients and beat at medium speed for about 3 minutes or until full and evenly combined. Stop mixer to scrape down the sides of the bowl and hand beat for 30 more seconds.
  7. Divide the batter evenly among the pans.
  8. Bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (time will vary).
  9. Once removed from the oven, let cakes rest in pan for about 10 minutes and turn out onto wire racks to cool completely.

The icing is this recipie that was given to me by my American friend Kati - who is an excellent cook. There is a YouTube video that you can watch if it looks intimidating http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIRk8NKWa-k  (But seriously, if I can make it? ANYONE can. 

WHITE CHOCOLATE MOUSSELINE BUTTERCREAM (Rose Levy Beranbaum's recipe)

adapted from Rose Levy Beranbaum's recipe. delicious!

  • 2 cups/1 lb/454 grams unsalted butter, softened but cool (65degreesF)
  • 1 cup/7 oz/200 grams sugar
  • 1/4 liquid cup/2 oz/60 grams water
  • 5 large/5.25 oz/150 grams egg whites, room temp.
  • 1/2 + 1/8 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp. pure almond extract
  • 6 oz melted and cooled white chocolate, pref. Tobler Narcisse


Makes 4.5 cups/1 lb 14 oz/858 grams (enough to fill and frost two 9-inch by 1 1/2-inch layer or three 9-inch by 1-inch layers)

  1. In a mixing bowl beat the butter until smooth and creamy and set aside in a cool place

  2. Have ready a heatproof glass measure near the range. In a small heavy saucepan heat 3/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup water, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is bubbling. Stop stirring and reduce the heat to low. (if using an electric range remove from the heat.)

  3. In another mixing bowl beat egg whites until foamy, add cream of tartar, and beat until soft peaks form when the beater is raised. Gradually beat in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar until stiff peaks form when the beater is raised slowly. Increase the heat and boil the syrup until a thermometer registers 248degreesF to 250degreesF (firm-ball stage). Immediately transfer the syrup to the glass measure to stop the cooking

  4. If using a hand-held mixer beat the syrup into the whites in a steady stream. Don't allow the syrup to fall on the beaters or they will spin it onto the sides of the bowl. If using a stand mixer, pour a small amount of syrup over the whites with the mixer off. Immediately beat at high speed for 5 seconds. Stop the mixer and add a larger amount of syrup. Beat at high speed for 5 seconds. Continue with the remaining syrup. For the last addition, use a rubber scraper to remove the syrup clinging to the glass measure. Lower speed to medium and continue beating up to 2 minutes or until cool. If not completely cool, continue beating on lowest speed.

  5. Beat in the butter at medium speed 1 tablespoon at a time. At first the mixture will seem thinner but will thicken beautifully by the time all the butter is added. If at any time the mixture looks slightly curdled, increase the speed slightly and beat until smooth before continuing to add more butter.

  6. Lower the speed slightly and drizzle in the almond extract. Beat in 6 ounces melted and cooled white chocolate. Place in an airtight bowl. Rebeat lightly from time to time to maintain silky texture. Buttercream becomes spongy on standing.