The cake was nothing short of amazing. I made it first for Danny’s birthday and it was so good I knew I wanted to make it again for MH’s. The cake is a white cake that’s pretty simple to make that includes lemon zest and lemon extract–I subbed out the lemon extract for vanilla though because I didn’t want to make it a lemon flavored cake. I did keep in the zest though. Now I am guilty of omitting lemon zest out of a recipe because I’m too lazy to buy fresh lemons, but I am sooo glad I didn’t from this, it really added so much flavor. Not like an overwhelming “I’m eating a lemon cake” flavor but just a flavor depth that wouldn’t have been there before. In between the layers of cake is the meringue buttercream and strawberry preserves–I think Dorie uses raspberry preserves and dried coconut, but I don’t like coconut and I wanted to use strawberry. It turned out great! Really this was some of the best cake I’ve ever had. I should probably feed myself a slice of humble pie, but the cake was real good. The chocolate buttercream was fantastic and went soooo well with the delicious cake and the strawberry preserves. The cake and preserves combo was divine. I decorated the outside with mini chocolate chips and garnished the top with strawberries to make it look special and pretty. The pictures didn’t turn out so well because the cake was devoured both times I made it, but I managed to salvage a little sliver to photograph. This cake was awesome I will for sure be making it again. It was so easy and delicious I made it twice in one week! Also in case you were wondering, the cake is great eaten for drunk munchies as well because when we returned in from celebrating MH’s 21st birthday, the cake got completely devoured by everyone. I even found it with a fork stuck straight in the top the next morning. Ahh birthdays.
Adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s Perfect Party Cake recipe
1 cup sugar
3 egg whites
3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temp
1 tsp vanilla
4 oz melted and cooled semi-sweet chocolate
Put the sugar and egg whites in a heat proof bowl, fir the bowl over a pot of simmering water (to create double boiler) and whisk constantly, keeping the mixture over the heat, until it is ho to the touch. About 3 minutes (mine took way longer). The sugar should be dissolved and mixture will look like shiny marshmallow cream. Remove the bowl from the heat. Working the whisk attachment or a hand mixer, beat the meringue on medium speed until it is cool, about 6 minutes. Add a stick of butter at a time, beating until smooth. Once all butter is in beat the buttercream on medium-high until it is thick and very smooth, 6-10 minutes. During the time the buttercream may curdle and separate, just keep beating and it will come together again. On medium speed, gradually add the vanilla and chocolate. You should have a shiny smooth, velvety buttercream. You can now refrigerate it to get a thicker consistency before working with it if you need to.