What do you like in a cake? Course or fine grained? Moist and dense, moist and crumbly, light and fluffy, or something in between?
I prefer a cake that’s dense, and so moist, that you can practically hear it when you cut it.
Over the weekend I decided to make a white cake. It’s been ages since I’ve done so. One reason it’s been so long? I have been hard pressed to find a good white cake recipe that suits my preferences.
I did a little research before deciding on a recipe from Williams-Sonoma’s cookbook Baking.
In this case, I intended to make a couple significant changes to the recipe (which I did) so this is more like comparing apple to oranges then apples to apples. I also wanted a smaller layer cake and planned on making mini-cupcakes with the remaining batter. I’ll get to my opinion in a second. The altered version of the recipe is below.
White Cake Recipe
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 c. vegetable oil
1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
3 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 c. half & half
1/2 c. milk
5 egg whites, room temperature
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly grease two 6” round cake pans with non-stick cooking spray. Cut two pieces of parchment paper to fit the bottoms of both pans and re-spray. Line mini-cupcake tins with 18 paper liners.
In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
In a large bowl, add butter, sugar, oil, and vanilla extract; blend until smooth and light.
Alternate adding flour, milk and half & half with butter mixture; mix thoroughly.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold egg whites into batter.
Pour batter into 6” cake pans about 2/3 full. Use remaining batter to fill each mini-cupcake about 1/2 full being careful not to overfill – they will rise considerably. Bake cakes 30-35 minutes; cupcakes 8-10 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted into center.
Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly before removing from in pans. Cool completely on bakers rack before frosting.
My conclusion? I’m still looking for white cake recipes. This cake has a nice flavor but the texture I was looking for wasn’t there. This cake reminds me more of a bakery cake, a little finer, crumbly, and slightly drier than what I prefer. I’ll keep searching…
I opted for a cocoa frosting recipe from Betty Crocker’s Cookbook.
Cocoa Butter Frosting Recipe
1/3 c. butter or margarine, softened
1/3 c. baking cocoa
2 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Approximately 2 tbsp. milk (use more or less to obtain the consistency of the frosting you like)
Mix all ingredients together until smooth and creamy.
Do you have a good white cake recipe that you think fits my criteria? I’d love to hear from you.