22 January 2011

In need of cake...

Something strange happens to me when the temperature drops like a stone...my need for cake increases.  A warm kitchen with the oven churning out heat, drops of batter on the counter and the smell of baking coconut wafting through the entire house.  I make a cup of tea and all is right in the world for 40 blissful minutes! 

A Birthday (http://blvdmarket.blogspot.com/2011/01/culinary-book-club.html) was the perfect excuse for a BIG cake on a Wednesday night!  In our book club novel this month was a white cake.  Now, I don't know about you, but white cake just doesn't do it for me.  I want coconut or nuts or chocolate or fruit or all four in my cakes!  I want cream cheese frosting, or caramel glaze!  white cake.  no.

So after fooling around on some of my favorite blogs and recipe sites, I decided on Italian Cream Cake.  (This was also determined by the fact I had 5 DOZEN eggs in my fridge and lots of coconut left from the holidays in the freezer!)  It's white, so it sorta went with the general theme of our book club.
I chose an Italian Cream Cake recipe from The Pioneer Woman site www.thepioneerwoman.com and I'm glad I did!  WOW!  All the "essential ingredients" were there for a terrific cake!  Moist, flavorful, rich,excess of cake goodness!  It was a winner! (I will be writing a separate post about my experiences with TPW website/blog.)

Recipe: Billie’s Italian Cream Cake

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  • 1 stick Butter
  • 1 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 5 whole Eggs (separated)
  • 3 teaspoons Vanilla
  • 1 cup Coconut (from PW: If You Think You Hate Coconut, Trust Me: I Do Too, And I Love It In This Recipe)
  • 2 cups All-purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • _____
  • 2 packages (8 Oz) Cream Cheese
  • 1 stick Butter
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla
  • 1 package 2 Lb Powdered Sugar
  • 1 cup Chopped Walnuts
  • 1 cup Sweetened, Flaked Coconut

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour three 9-inch round cake pans.
Beat egg whites until stiff. Set aside.
In a large bowl, cream together butter, oil, and sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in the egg yolks, vanilla, and coconut.
In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, and baking powder.
Alternate adding buttermilk and dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Mix until just combined, then fold in egg whites.
Pour evenly into the three prepared pans, then sprinkle the top of each pan with 1 (at least) tablespoon sugar.
Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes, then turn the cakes out onto cooling racks and allow to cool completely.
In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and powdered sugar. Beat until light and fluffy. Stir in chopped walnuts and sugared coconut. Spread between layers and serve.
Note: cream cheese frosting will soften at room temperature, so refrigerate if you won’t use it right away.

I made my cake only 2 layers to appease the household, one 8" round just for them! 

I decorated Linda's cake with fresh lemon leaves instead of nuts (in case of unspoken allergies) and the bright, shiny green leaves gave us a much needed respite from blustery winter weather!   

I ate the last chunk standing by the counter with my coffee, right out of pan.  $10 says you will too.

1 comment:

  1. This was a fabulous cake. I'm not a very patient cake maker, and I seldom have all the right ingredients on hand, so I'm sure I've never actually made one. But the next time I need something special I just might try this. It was awesome, and so pretty.