A White Cake

You might think this is a wedding cake… but it’s not. My maternal grandma turned 80 a couple of weeks ago, and she wanted a layer cake for her birthday, so that’s what I made. I chose to keep it white because I think it looks elegant, but you can decorate it any way you like! I had already made one last year for my parents’ anniversary, and everyone loved it so I didn’t change the recipe. Actually, that’s not completely true: one of my cousins complained about the raspberries, so I changed the filling of the smaller layers to chocolate-hazelnut. It was my third time baking a cake this big/complicated, and I reminded myself of what I said last year: I’m not baking another one like this unless I have a Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer. It’s just too hard with a handheld mixer. Plus, I want a Kitchen Aid so this is a really good excuse… my family loves these cakes so maybe I can trick them into buying me one. Wishful thinking on my part, since it’s very expensive to buy in Europe (as in 400+ euros expensive). That’s why I still don’t have one!

I’m not by any means a cake expert… but here’s the recipe that works for me.

Not a wedding cake: chocolate, raspberry & mascarpone

Note: we used this recipe for our wedding cake a year and a half later. Oh the irony. I did vary the timeline for this, and made it in two days, simply served it on the third one.

For the chocolate cake

  • 3 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup dutch processed cocoa
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 12 oz (340g) butter
  • 3 cups brown sugar
  • 6 large eggs, slightly beaten
  1. Preheat oven at 355ºF (180ºC).
  2. Sift the flour, baking soda and salt.
  3. Mix the cocoa with the hot water; once it’s cooled, add in the buttermilk.
  4. With a mixer, beat the butter and sugar. Gradually beat in the eggs.
  5. Add the dry ingredients in 3 turns and the cocoa mixture in 2 turns alternating, starting and ending with the dry ingredients.
  6. Divide the dough into separate molds (I used two medium sized and two smallish sized). Cook until the top is springy; depending on the size of the mold, it’ll be 20 minutes approx. for the smaller one, and 30 minutes for the bigger one.
  7. Let the layers cool thoroughly. If you’ve done the four layers separately, a good way to have the tops be completely leveled and even besides cutting them with a serrated knife is placing heavy books on top.

For the raspberry filling

  • Fresh raspberries
  • Raspberry jam
  1. Since it’s best to make the cake a couple of days early, I use a bit of jam so it’s not very dry and then place the raspberries on top.

For the hazelnut filling

  • Chocolate
  • Milk
  • Hazelnut praliné
  • Part of the frosting
  1. In a double boiler, melt a bit of chocolate and stir in the praliné and a bit of milk. (I kind of eyeballed the quantities, sorry). Let it cool.
  2. Add in a bit of the frosting and stir. Let it rest for a bit in the fridge.

For the mascarpone vanilla frosting

  • 10 oz (300g) whipping cream
  • 10 oz (300g) mascarpone
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp white sugar (or 2 if you like it sweeter)
  1. You’ll definitely need to multiply this recipe by 2-3 (or even 4 if you decorate the cake a lot) but I think it’s better if you do it one at a time (or two). You can also just keep in mind the proportion of whipping cream to mascarpone (1:1, or even a bit more of whipping cream if you’d like) and eye ball the sugar and vanilla extract, so you’re not left with a ton of frosting.
  2. With a mixer, beat the whipping cream, mascarpone, extract and sugar until stiff peaks are formed. Use immediately.

Assembly and timeline

  1. Day 1: Bake the cakes. Let them cool thoroughly. Level them with a serrated knife or by placing heavy books on top. Wrap tightly and store.
  2. Day 2: Prepare some frosting and the fillings. With a pastry bag, pipe a ring of frosting along the border of the cake. Fill with rasperry jam and raspberries, or chocolate-hazelnut frosting. Place another layer on top. Use the rest of the frosting for a crumb coat, to seal the crumbs on the cake. Let it cool on the fridge.
  3. Day 3: Prepare the rest of the frosting. With an offset spatula, frost the cake. Using the small mold as a guideline, place the small tier on top of the big tier. Finish decorating with the help of a pastry bag.

What do you think? Share your opinion in the comments.

11 thoughts on “A White Cake

  1. Tami

    I am drooling over here A!! I just want a bite. Just a teeny-tiny bite. Ok- maybe a big slice. Huge slice?

    My Kitchen Aid mixer was my most beloved wedding gift. I occasionally even give it little caresses when I pass by it in the kitchen. :)

    1. Ainhoa @ ALittleBite Post author

      You’re so lucky to own a KitchenAid! Maybe someday I’ll own one… I think if I bake enough giant cakes for my friends/family I’ll be able to convince them to pitch in and buy me one haha

  2. Nacho (del colé de tu sita)

    Muy ricos los mexican wedding cookies que hemos tomado con tus padres. Y el brownie estupendo…
    Besos Nacho

  3. PA

    This looks delicious! I think I’m going to try making this soon, but I know my frosting won’t look nearly as good as yours…

    Also, I hear you on the Kitchenaid mixer – we’ve put one on our wedding registry, but I’m not sure anyone will get it for us. I’d just love to be able to make cakes and cookies with ease during the holidays!

    1. Ainhoa Post author

      Let me know how it goes! I’m sure it’ll turn out perfectly. Oh and I finally got a KitchenAid last year for my birthday/Christmas gift. I love it already and it’ll definitely come in handy when I bake all the desserts for the wedding.

  4. Amanda

    Ainhoa, estoy haciendo este pastel hoy (mientras escribo una de las “capas” está en el horno, pare el cumple de Mark ! Tenía muchas ganas de probar tu receta, ya te contaré como me salió.

    1. Ainhoa Post author

      Qué bien, me alegro un montón! Es la receta que utilice para la tarta de boda también, a nosotros nos gusta mucho :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>