My husband’s family doesn’t care much for birthday celebrations. But, they do make an effort for their mother. In a family full of boys one her, it’s quite sweet to watch them devise a plan to celebrate her birthday. This year, we were short on time and put together a quick plan to accommodate a rowdy baby and a son who was only in town for a short period of time.
Taking into consideration my mother in law’s preferences for cake, I knew I had to construct something light, not-to-sweet and definitely included fruit. As long as I’ve known her she’s ordered these magnificent cakes with glazed fruit, slivered almonds and whipped cream frosting. With hours to make it, I found some supplies I had on hand to put together a cake she would love.
With my favorite American buttercream being too sweet for her taste and not having time to make Swiss meringue buttercream, my options were limited. So, I tried something new based on what I had on hand. I’m so glad I did. This cake was a hit. Bringing back memories of when she would bake cakes for her sons, she ate her cake happily. It was a good day.
Frosting using heavy whipping cream can be finnicky and not always the stable when you want to make a presentation. Although you can stabilize it with powdered sugar, this frosting using Cool Whip is way more stable. Especially with the addition of powdered sugar, I was able to keep the cake and frosting in its proper form through the afternoon while we ate pieces of the cake.
If I would have changed anything, based on supplies I had on hand, I would have added more blueberries on the top. If you want to make more layers (cut each layer in half for a four layer cake), just make sure you double the filling and frosting. I had just enough frosting for a filling layer, the outer layer and just enough for piping.
- 2 and 1/4 cups cake flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 and 1/4 cup whole milk, room temperature
- 4 large egg whites, room temperature
- 1 stick of unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 and 1/2 cup white granulated sugar
- seeds scraped from one vanilla bean or 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cups berries (mixed or pick one)
- 1/4 cup white granulated sugar
- 1 (8oz) container of frozen whipped topping, thawed
- 1 (3.5 oz) instant vanilla pudding mix
- 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar. sifted
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- sliced almonds
- Preheat oven to 350F. If you make cupcakes, line with cupcake liners. If you are baking cake layers, grease two eight-inch round cake pans.
- In a large and separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- In another bowl, whisk the milk and eggs. Set aside.
- In the bowl of your electric mixer, with the paddle attachment, on medium heat, beat the butter, sugar, and vanilla bean seeds, until the mixture is very light/pale.
- Add the vanilla extract until fully incorporated. Carefully add and mix in half of the milk mixture until all is combined. Then, mix in half of the flour mixture until fully combined. Add the remaining milk mixture until combined. Finally, add the flour mixture until incorporated. Once everything is incorporated, beat the mixture for a good 2 minutes to ensure that everything is smoothly combined.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes, until it passes the toothpick test. Cool completely before frosting.
- Prepare filling: While cake is baking, in a bowl, mash together the 1 cup of berries coarsely – I still like big chunks. Pour in sugar and mix together. Set it aside.
- Prepare frosting: In your stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer (using a large bowl), whip together the heavy cream, instant pudding powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Mix until its smooth and getting thick. Remove from the mixer and by hand, fold in the whipped topping until fully incorporated. Do not over mix. Once there are no white streaks, place in the fridge for 30 minutes to firm up. Once firm, assemble and frost cake.
- Assemble and frost: Place one layer of cake on a cake board. Spread the fruit to within an inch of the border. Then, spread the whipped frosting on top of the fruit and then place the final layer on top. Frost the cake completely.