Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Simple Layer Cake with Vanilla Frosting, from Martha Stewart

When my Martha Stewart Living magazine arrived in the mail a few weeks ago, the girls loved the picture on the front:

They proceeded to look at the entire copy with me on the bed one day.  It was fun to have my girls interested in home decorating, baking, and gardening.  When they found out that there was a recipe for the cake on the front cover photo, they wanted to give it a try.

We donned our aprons and got to work one morning.  The icing recipe is my favorite ever, I think, as there was PLENTY to generously ice the cake, and there was even some leftover.  After dinner that evening we enjoyed delicious slices of vanilla cake.

This is the perfect cake for birthdays, parties, or just everyday.  It's easy and OH, so much more tasty than a cake mix!

Simple Layer Cake with Vanilla Frosting

1 stick unsalted butter, softened, plus more for cake pans
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

1 stick unsalted butter, softened
4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
5 cups confectioner's sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup half-and-half {original recipe calls for whole milk, but I like to use this instead}
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Cake:  Preheat oven to 350 F.  Butter two 8 or 9-inch round cake pans and either line with buttered parchment, or butter and flour pans.  Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.  Beat together butter and granulated sugar with a mixer on medium speed until combined, 1 to 2 minutes.  Add eggs and beat well, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary.  Reduce speed to low and gradually add flour mixture, beating until combined.  Add milk and vanilla and beat until just combined.

Divide batter between pans; smooth tops with an off-set spatula.  Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted into centers comes out clean, 33 to 35 minutes {If using 9-inch pans, 28-30 minutes}.  Let cakes cool in pans on wire racks 15 minutes.  Turn out cakes onto racks to cool completely.

Frosting:  Beat together butter and cream cheese with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and creamy, about 1 minute.  Reduce speed to medium.  Add confectioner's sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add salt, half-and-half {or milk}, and vanilla and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes.  If not using immediately, cover surface of frosting with plastic wrap.  Frosting can be refrigerated in an airtight container up to 1 week.  Before using, bring to room temperature, then beat on low speed until smooth.

Place 1 cake layer on a cake plate and spread 1 cup frosting on top.  Place remaining cake layer on top.  spread top and sides of cake with remaining frosting, swirling to coat in a decorative fashion.  Cake can be covered with a cake dome and refrigerated overnight.  Bring cake to room temperature before serving.

source:  Martha Stewart Living, May 2013


  1. I'm glad to know that all you girls are enjoying the MSL :) I think it's so cute the girls wanted to look at it and make the cake! That cake did sound good, and I'm glad to know that it tasted delicious! In years past I've never really wanted cake, but the last year or so cakes sound SO good to me. I need an excuse to make one!


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