My mother-in-law just had a birthday and I wanted to make her a cake from "Baking From My Home to Yours." The only requirement was that it couldn't have any chocolate. This was a perfect opportunity to make "Perfect Party Cake"! I was really happy with how it turned out, and I am excited to make it again, and even though I was completely intimidated by the buttercream recipe, it worked very well.
The coconut on the sides makes the cake look really fancy, and is delicious, but it can be easily left out for those who do not care for coconut.
(adapted from Baking From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan)
2 1/4 cups cake four
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
4 large egg whites
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 tsp lemon zest
1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
Preheat the oven to 350 F
Butter two 9x2" round cake pans, and line the bottoms with parchment
Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt
Whisk together the egg whites and buttermilk
Rub the zest and sugar together in the bowl of a stand mixer, then add the butter and beat on medium speed with the paddle attachment for 3 minutes.
Beat in one third of the flour mixture (still on medium), then half the milk-egg mixture, then another third of the flour mixture, then the rest of the milk-egg mixture, then the rest of the flour mixture. Make sure each mixture gets incorporated before moving on to the next.
Beat the batter for 2 minutes after the last addition, then divide between the pans and smooth with a rubber spatula.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a thin knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on the rack for 5 minutes, then remove from pans and take off the paper liners to cool completely.
1 cup sugar
4 large egg whites
3 sticks (12 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Put the sugar and egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer and place over a pan of simmering water.
Whisk constantly until the mixture feels hot (about 3 minutes) and sugar is completely dissolved.
Fit the bowl into the mixer and beat with the whisk attachment on medium speed until cool (about 5 minutes).
Switch to the paddle attachment and beat in the butter, one stick at a time, then beat on medium-high until thick and smooth (about 6-10 minutes).
On medium speed, beat in the lemon juice gradually, then the vanilla.
The frosting should be shiny, smooth, and white. Press plastic onto the top and set aside
Finishing the Cake
2/3 cup seedless raspberry jam
1 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut
Stir the jam vigorously so it is spreadable.
Cut each cake layer horizontally in half. Put one layer cut side up on a plate and spread with one third of the jam.
Spread about a quarter of the buttercream carefully over the jam.
Place another layer on top and repeat with two more layers.
Place the last layer cut side down on the top of the cake and frost the sides and top. Press coconut onto the sides and top, or leave the top free of coconut and decorate as you wish.