The cake was a HUGE hit.... we all loved it and definitely ate more than once piece. Needless to say, this cake didn't sit around too long.
Ingredients for the cake:
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 Tbs. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
12 Tbs. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. almond extract
1 cup milk
5 egg whites, at room temperature
3/4 cup raspberry preserves
1 1/4 cups sliced almonds
The girls love helping in the kitchen, so they sifted the dry ingredients while I mixed the butter, sugar and liquids together, then the egg whites... then we combined everything together and finally our cake mix was ready for the oven.
The recipe called for two 9" round cake pans (sliced in half horizontally once cooked), but to make it easier, I used three 8" disposable cake pans so I wouldn't have to slice anything. I poured the batter into the cake pans and put them all in the oven at the same time to bake at 350ºF for about 22 minutes (until a toothpick inserted into the centers comes out clean).
Once the cakes were finished baking, I let them cool in the pans for 10 minutes. Then I took the cakes out of the pans and let them cool completely on a wire rack.
Once the cakes were completely cooled, I made the frosting and decorated the cake (the girls had disappeared by now.... well, until they heard the mixer again. Then they were asking to taste spoonfuls of frosting).
Ingredients for the cream cheese frosting:
1 lb. cream cheese, at room temperature
6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp. almond extract
I mixed the cream cheese and butter together using an electric mixer, then added the confectioners' sugar. Once the mixture was smooth, I beat in the vanilla and almond extracts until it was well blended.
I put one 8" cake on a platter and spread the cream cheese frosting on the top...
Over the cream cheese frosting, I spread raspberry preserves...
Then added another cake layer on top of the preserves...
.... and spread another layer of frosting and preserves, then added the final cake layer and more frosting...
Once the layers were done and the top frosted, I spread frosting along the side...
Then pressed the almonds around the sides (and cleaned up the edges)...
... then added a ring of fresh raspberries around the bottom of the cake...
... then quartered strawberries and stood them upright around the top edge of the cake, then piled fresh blueberries in the middle...
When the cake is cut, the layers are soooo pretty!
This cake was absolutely delicious.... it was moist, creamy, fruity and perfectly sweet!
I'll be making this again for the fourth (and more throughout the year -- could be a great Christmas dessert too!).... and the husband (who is not usually a cake-eater) can't wait (me neither!)! If you'll be making this too, Williams-Sonoma has an easy print-out of their Almond-Scented White Cake recipe here.
What will you be making for the fourth?
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