The search for the ultimate white cake continues. This recipe comes from the 1986 Southern Living cookbook. They still rank as one of my favorites. Once upon a time I had all of my cookbooks in one general area. After a remodel, and a collection of tableware and party supplies, my cookbooks are all over the place. This annual was in a box in the garage. Shame on me, that’s no way to care for these treasures. Now, about this cake.
It was OK. Nothing to write home about as my mom used to say. The texture was slightly better than the last cake, but my taste buds weren’t doing the happy dance. I made this cake for our leap year son’s birthday. For as long as I can remember he’s always asked for strawberry cheesecake for his birthday dessert. I’ve made everything from strawberry cheese cake/pie from a mix to the long drawn out homemade version. This year I reverted to my hybrid, white cake with cheesecake filling, topped with strawberry filling. The cheesecake and strawberry fillings were shortcuts. Hey, I had to work that day! That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Here’s the recipe:
Buttermilk White Cake – Southern Living 1986
6 egg whites
1 tsp cream of tartar
1 cup shortening
2 cups sugar
2 ¾ cups sifted cake flour
1 tsp baking soda
¾ tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
½ tsp vanilla
½ tsp lemon extract
Combine egg whites (at room temperature) and cream of tartar in a large bowl. Beat egg whites at high speed of electric mixer until stiff peaks form. While you’re waiting try to think of a use for all those leftover egg yolks. Set egg whites aside.
Cream shortening; gradually add sugar, beating at medium speed until well blended. Combine cake flour, soda, and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Stir in flavorings. Fold in one-fourth of egg whites, and blend well. Fold in remaining egg whites.
Pour batter into 3 greased and floured 9-inch cake pans. I used 2 8-inches and had enough leftover to make 6 cupcakes. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. My 2 8-inch layers took 35 minutes to bake.
Cool in pans, 10 minutes and cool completely on wire racks. I prepared a cheesecake filling and spread most of it between the layers. On top of that I spread ½ of a 15 oz can of strawberry filling on top of the cheesecake. After placing the second layer on top I covered the cake with a frosting that I made with leftover Swiss Meringue Buttercream and traditional butter cream.
I placed some of the cheesecake filling in a frosting bag with a large round tip and piped cheesecake dots on top of the cake, leaving an approximate 3-inch circle uncovered. Then I spooned half of the remaining strawberry filling into the uncovered circle. I’m sure there was probably a better way to explain that but I just couldn’t think of it. Next time I’ll take pictures. The cake was finished with a top and bottom border. Tah Dah!!!!!
Note: When using a fruit or very soft fillings between cake layers, pipe a dam of frosting around the inside of edge if the cake. This keeps the filling from seeping out and bulging between the layers.