Today we had a shower for one of my favorite people. Her struggles and the path she had to take to become pregnant was a long, hard journey. But this is not my story to tell. Instead, I will share
On an early morning, she was on her way to a doctor’s appointment when out of the fog a beautiful red fox ran across her path. They both stopped and looked at each other. She is not sure how long they sat there mesmerized by one another but, later at the doctor’s, he gave her the news that she was pregnant. This time, instead of fear, a sense of peace settle in and faith grew. She reached down and rubbed her belly and said, “Hello, my little Foxtrot.”
A story like this deserves a celebration! I made a vanilla cake with strawberry filling for their shower and how could it not include a red fox (carved out of wood) surrounded by woods and pines? If you want a really great cake you only need two things, meringue and cake flour. Both will guarantee a moist and airy cake.
Before You Begin:
Lay out 7 eggs, 1½ sticks of butter, 1/2 cup milk (do not use skim), and 1/2 cup buttermilk to warm to room temperature.
Prepare the Cake Pans:
Grease and flour three 8-inch cake pans. Line the bottom with a round of parchment paper that has been greased.
Separate 3 whole eggs, placing the yolks in a small bowl and the whites in a stand up mixer bowl. Add the whites from 4 additional eggs for a total of 7 egg whites. Attach the whisk attachment to the mixer and beat the egg whites on high until stiff peaks form.
Transfer the egg whites to another bowl. Clean the stand-up mixer bowl.
Attach a paddle attachment to the mixer and cream 3/4 cup butter, 3/4 cup shortening, and 2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Add the 3 eggs yolks and mix until incorporated into batter.
In a large bowl, add 3 cups cake flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and 1 teaspoon salt. (If you used salted butter omit the salt in this step.) Whisk to combine. In a small bowl mix 1/2 cup milk, 1/2 cup buttermilk, and 3 teaspoons vanilla.
👩🍳TIP: When baking, always use pure vanilla. It is more expensive but so worth it when it comes to taste.
With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients, alternating with the liquid, working in batches mixing just until incorporated.
Remove the mixer from the stand. Gently fold the beaten egg whites into the batter just until incorporated.
Pour the batter into the prepared pans. Bake at 350°F for 30 – 40 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 5 minutes in the pan before removing to wire racks to cool completely.
I filled the layers with a strawberry pie filling and covered it with a buttercream frosting scraping the sides to expose the cake for a more rustic appeal.
👩🍳TIP: I use a large round tip to place piping of buttercream frosting around the edge of each layer before spooning in the filling. This creates a nice border that keeps the filling from oozing out when the next layer is placed on top of it.
So how good was it? Well, a picture is worth a thousand words. – Ella💙
To print the recipe check out: Of Batter & Dough