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3.30.2008

Everything's Coming Up Roses...Daring Bakers March... Perfect Party Cake



I am one of those that usually rush to get my Daring Bakers Challenges done early.I may even try it out a few more times before posting. Not this month. Time just slipped on by.Perfect Party cake is my first Dorie Greenspan recipe ever. Oddly enough I had never really heard of her until I started Blogging and becoming a Daring Baker. But that's the reason I joined, to learn so much more! I managed to squeeze in the cake baking Thursday night before deadline to freeze and decorate on Friday. One thing I knew for sure was that I was going to play with Rose flavors. I ordered a Greek preserve of rose petals in syrup for the filling. I had some SENCE Rose Nectar that I wanted to use in the butter cream. I thought this would be a great compliment to this white cake.I love sugar craft and decorating, but just never got around to crafting my royal icing flowers for this cake this month. So I cheated and used my rose molds for some fondant decorations. That's the part I really loved about this challenge, the freedom and creative license. I was a bit worried because some DB's were having issues with the cake rising. I didn't have enough of white granulated sugar and decided to add natural cane sugar to what I had. I worried this might impede the baking. But all turned out right enough.The baking time just took a little longer than the 35 minutes the recipe said. Then all of sudden it started to brown and spring to life.I did use the Swans Down Cake Flour Dorie recommended. I also substituted the lemon zest and extract for a favorite flavoring of mine, Princess Cake and Cookie Emulsion. This product is by Lorrane Oils and doesn't flash off when baking. It has a tart nutty flavor I love.The Butter cream was similar to last butter cream we all made for the December Buche De Noel Challenge. I found this one better and lighter in flavor. I substituted Sence Rose Nectar rather than the lemon juice the recipe called for. I also took out my decorating kit and found my favorite Dusty Rose color gel to add to the frosting. I found this icing way different to work with than my standard Wilton Butter cream(Crisco and powdered sugar). But the results looked great while piping. I assembled and iced it all while the cake was frozen .Rather that use shredded coconut, I used shaved white chocolate to compliment the rose flavors. I planned to take it out of the refrigerator Saturday afternoon to take to party.
The cake was very well received. I was surprised it turned out so well. The rose petals in syrup settled nicely in between the layers .The flavors were subtle and the cakes texture was perfect. I could see this cake as a wedding cake(sturdy yet delicate to layer).I most loved the butter cream. Silky and not to sweet.







Big thanks to this months host Morven and be sure to check out the other Daring Bakers take on this great cake.


Perfect Party Cake by Dorie Greenspan


Update on playing around. Yes you can do what ever you want with this cake as long as you promise to use the basic cake recipe and the basic buttercream recipe (if you are doing the buttercream that is) . The filling/frosting flavours are completely up to you. If you don't feel like using Dorie's buttercream recipe (flavoured as you wish) she says whipped cream will do for the filling and finishing and I say... go for it. If you want to use fondant or something else - it's your cake. Bake a square one, a heart shaped one or any other shape you like but please make it a layer cake.I can't wait to see what combinations people come up with. You can leave out the lemon, put different flavours of preserves in the middle, leave off the coconut - have some fun with it.


Words from Dorie


Stick a bright-coloured Post-it to this page, so you’ll always know where to turn for a just-right cake for any celebration. The original recipe was given to me by my great dear friend Nick Malgieri, of baking fame, and since getting it, I’ve found endless opportunities to make it – you will too. The cake is snow white, with an elegant tight crumb and an easygoing nature: it always bakes up perfectly; it is delicate on the tongue but sturdy in the kitchen – no fussing when it comes to slicing the layers in half or cutting tall, beautiful wedges for serving; and, it tastes just as you’d want a party cake to taste – special. The base recipe is for a cake flavoured with lemon, layered with a little raspberry jam and filled and frosted with a classic (and so simple) pure white lemony hot-meringue buttercream but, because the elements are so fundamental, they lend themselves to variation (see Playing Around), making the cake not just perfect, but also versatile.


For the Cake


2 1/4 cups cake flour (updated 25 March)


1 tablespoon baking powder


½ teaspoon salt


1 ¼ cups whole milk or buttermilk (I prefer buttermilk with the lemon)


4 large egg whites


1 ½ cups sugar


2 teaspoons grated lemon zest


1 stick (8 tablespoons or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature


½ teaspoon pure lemon extract


For the Buttercream


1 cup sugar


4 large egg whites


3 sticks (12 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature


¼ cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 large lemons)


1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


For Finishing


2/3 cup seedless raspberry preserves stirred vigorously or warmed gently until spreadable


About 1 ½ cups sweetened shredded coconut


Getting Ready


Centre a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two 9 x 2 inch round cake pans and line the bottom of each pan with a round of buttered parchment or wax paper. Put the pans on a baking sheet.


To Make the Cake


Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.Whisk together the milk and egg whites in a medium bowl.Put the sugar and lemon zest in a mixer bowl or another large bowl and rub them together with your fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant. Add the butter and working with the paddle or whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat at medium speed for a full 3 minutes, until the butter and sugar are very light.Beat in the extract, then add one third of the flour mixture, still beating on medium speed. Beat in half of the milk-egg mixture, then beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients until incorporated. Add the rest of the milk and eggs beating until the batter is homogeneous, then add the last of the dry ingredients. Finally, give the batter a good 2- minute beating to ensure that it is thoroughly mixed and well aerated. Divide the batter between the two pans and smooth the tops with a rubber spatula.Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the cakes are well risen and springy to the touch – a thin knife inserted into the centers should come out clean.Transfer the cakes to cooling racks and cool for about 5 minutes, then run a knife around the sides of the cakes, unfold them and peel off the paper liners.Invert and cool to room temperature, right side up (the cooled cake layers can be wrapped airtight and stored at room temperature overnight or frozen for up to two months).


To Make the Buttercream


Put the sugar and egg whites in a mixer bowl or another large heatproof bowl, fit the bowl over a plan of simmering water and whisk constantly, keeping the mixture over the heat, until it feels hot to the touch, about 3 minutes. The sugar should be dissolved, and the mixture will look like shiny marshmallow cream.Remove the bowl from the heat.Working with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer, beat the meringue on medium speed until it is cool, about 5 minutes.Switch to the paddle attachment if you have one, and add the butter a stick at a time, beating until smooth.Once all the butter is in, beat in the buttercream on medium-high speed until it is thick and very smooth, 6-10 minutes.During this time the buttercream may curdle or separate – just keep beating and it will come together again.On medium speed, gradually beat in the lemon juice, waiting until each addition is absorbed before adding more, and then the vanilla. You should have a shiny smooth, velvety, pristine white buttercream. Press a piece of plastic against the surface of the buttercream and set aside briefly.


To Assemble the Cake


Using a sharp serrated knife and a gentle sawing motion, slice each layer horizontally in half. Put one layer cut side up on a cardboard cake round or a cake plate protected by strips of wax or parchment paper.Spread it with one third of the preserves.Cover the jam evenly with about one quarter of the buttercream.Top with another layer, spread with preserves and buttercream and then do the same with a third layer (you’ll have used all the jam and have buttercream leftover).Place the last layer cut side down on top of the cake and use the remaining buttercream to frost the sides and top. Press the coconut into the frosting, patting it gently all over the sides and top.ServingThe cake is ready to serve as soon as it is assembled, but I think it’s best to let it sit and set for a couple of hours in a cool room – not the refrigerator. Whether you wait or slice and enjoy it immediately, the cake should be served at room temperature; it loses all its subtlety when it’s cold. Depending on your audience you can serve the cake with just about anything from milk to sweet or bubbly wine.


Storing


The cake is best the day it is made, but you can refrigerate it, well covered, for up to two days. Bring it to room temperature before serving. If you want to freeze the cake, slide it into the freezer to set, then wrap it really well – it will keep for up to 2 months in the freezer; defrost it, still wrapped overnight in the refrigerator.


Playing Around


Since lemon is such a friendly flavour, feel free to make changes in the preserves: other red preserves – cherry or strawberry – look especially nice, but you can even use plum or blueberry jam.


Fresh Berry Cake


If you will be serving the cake the day it is made, cover each layer of buttercream with fresh berries – use whole raspberries, sliced or halved strawberries or whole blackberries, and match the preserves to the fruit. You can replace the coconut on top of the cake with a crown of berries, or use both coconut and berries. You can also replace the buttercream between the layers with fairly firmly whipped sweetened cream and then either frost the cake with buttercream (the contrast between the lighter whipped cream and the firmer buttercream is nice) or finish it with more whipped cream. If you use whipped cream, you’ll have to store the cake the in the refrigerator – let it sit for about 20 minutes at room temperature before serving.

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65 comments:

Maryann said...

I knew you would do a great job on this month's challenge! So much talent! :)

Courtney said...

wow you are so much better than me getting yours done early. I aspire to do that one day :) your cake looks so good. i love how you decorated it.

Chris said...

That's one beautiful looking cake! Like you, this was my first Dorie Greenspan recipe as well. I think we both did pretty well! :)

Morven said...

Well my dear Glamah, your cake is just fabwah!! Such creativity with the decorating. Thanks for playing. And YES you do NEED the book, you won't regret it.

White On Rice Couple said...

The rose petals in syrup is brilliant! I'm a huge fan of buttercream and this cake is right up my alley!

Pixie said...

Absolutely stunning- you are so very talented!!!!!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Your cake looks fantastic! With that gorgeous decoration, it's just like a wedding cake... Very well done!

Cheers,

Rosa

Anne said...

Ooh, so pretty! That's definitely my favorite one of the ones I've seen so far! I didn't manage to participate this time, but yours looks amazing :)

linda said...

This must be the prettiest perfect party cake!
Now I know where you had to use the rose petal preserves for.
Seems our cakes have something in common...

Dharm said...

Lovely, Just lovely! And Rose petals is syrup? How good must that be!!! This is just fabulous my dear!

KJ said...

I think the rose flavouring you used is a great idea. I'm sure your cake tasted fantastic.

Ben said...

Oh yeah! You rock grrrrrl! That is one good looking cake. This is my favorite time of the month. I am so glad to be a daring baker :D

Judy @ No Fear Entertaining said...

That is incredible!!! You are so talented and creative!

Passionate baker...& beyond said...

Beutiful indeed Glamah...very glamahrous! Ooooooooh you've used such exotic sounding ingredients...must have been absolutely delicious. WOW!!

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Wow, Coco, your cake looks perfect. I'm so impressed. And this was so informative, too. BTW... we ARE heading south, but I so appreciated your Chicago suggestions - they were absolutely perfect for my family. And my nephew is in Chicago so we go there from time to time and I hope we can meet up.

BTW... Ann Arbor is only about 4.5 hours away and it's a great foodie town, so let me know if you and CS want to come visit some time - we have plenty of room!

cheri said...

Wow, that is quite the cake. Your layers rose more than most it seems. The cake looks wonderful.

Proud Italian Cook said...

I knew your cake would be beautiful!I love the dusty rose color and the rope style frosting you did! Gorgeous! And I have to say I'm very curious about the princess cake and cookie emulsion, I never heard of that, or the Lorrane oils. I'm going to Google them!!

Deborah said...

I have never used rose flavors before. Your cake is so beautiful! Great job!

Rosie said...

Oh this is such a beautiful cake - well done!! This is one stunning art work of a cake :)

Rosie x

Megan said...

I love your rose flavor choice. And decorated in true glamour style!

Shayne said...

great piping, pretty cake.

L Vanel said...

What lush beautiful decor on the cake! It looks truly voluptuous. Thanks for sharing it with us.

Bellini Valli said...

You rurned out a stunning looking cake Glamah> Perfect for a Spring or maybe even Summer party. Yiu're right it would make a beautiful wedding cake:D

Peter M said...

Glam, you took this cake challenge and made it very unique and you get bonus points for using a Greek product!

breadchick said...

WOW!! All those lovely colours and roses!! Did I say WOW?!!

Cakespy said...

Simply fantastic! Your decorating is done perfectly--the palette is gorgeous, and I am sure the taste is easy on the palate as well!

Gabi said...

What a beautiful job Courtney- You are such a talented decorator! I love the rose flavourings too.
This is a beautiful cake inside and out.
xoxo

SaraLynn said...

OMG...this is beautiful!
What a wonderful cake!

Heather said...

All I can say is wowzers. That looks like a lot of work! Beautifully done, Courtney. I want to chew on a rose now.

marias23 said...

oh. my. goodness. rose petal preserve! you're making me jealous! i'm a bit obsessed with rose flavoring right now (thanks to pierre herme). i have to try that preserve! where did you get it? :)

jasmine said...

You do such lovely designs and decorating work. Also am impressed with the rosy take on things. Bravo!

j

Claire said...

Looks great! I'm quite impressed with all of your decoration...not my forte!

Cynthia said...

Wow is all I can mutter. Hats off to you on a very fine job.

Mary said...

Wow yours is beautiful and lush. I can only imagine how lovely it tasted with the rose flavors. Very nicely done!

Anne said...

Your cake is beautiful!...i love the pastel colors...and your buttercream looks super shiny :)

Half Baked said...

Wow!! your cake looks amazing! I love the idea of adding rose petal preserves. That's the perfect flavor addition for this cake!!

Julius said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Your cake is gorgeous! Just gorgeous!

Julius from Occasional Baker

Nan said...

Good lord this cake looks *intricate*!! I love the rose petals...that's just so chic and delicious.

maybahay said...

wow, rose petal preserve and rose nectar??? were you trying to seduce someone with this cake?
it's absolutely gorgeous! i love the unexpected ingredients.

Big Boys Oven said...

what an awesome design!

marye said...

fantastic job on the cake!

Molly Loves Paris said...

That is a really terrific looking cake. It's so creative and fun and looks like it would be a cake at the mad hatters tea party.

Emiline said...

Well, look at that. Yours is way different than the others I've seen. The cake looks beautiful! I like the rose theme. Did you enjoy the flavor of the roses?
It just sounds romantic.

The Caked Crusader said...

That is one tall cake! Beautiful!

Sheltie Girl said...

You did a wonderful job on your cake. The flowers are so beautiful. Great work!

Natalie @ Gluten a Go Go

ChichaJo said...

Your cake reached such lofty heights! I love it! :) Great job on the decorating!

RecipeGirl said...

WOW- it turned out so so pretty! I love the roses :)

chou said...

Wow, it's practically a wedding cake! Gorgeous!!!!

Annemarie said...

OOh, iced roses AND rose flavored icing. It must have smelled and tasted wonderful. Very wedding perfect indeed - fantastic idea you had.

Brilynn said...

Wow, your cake is so tall!
I've never baked with anything rose scented, it sounds great!

Y said...

What an amazing looking cake. I love the way you've decorated it. Looks so decadent yet pretty.

Blog Princess said...

It's so towering and gorgeously pretty and over the top - those soft dusty colours and just.... DROOL...................

We Are Never Full said...

THis looks amazing and it solidifies the fact that i can't bake. CAN NOT BAKE. i want to take a bite of what you made but i don't actually want to make it. what's wrong with me?!

great job!!

amy @ http://www.weareneverfull.com

Elle said...

How lovely to use rose flavors...it must have tasted like a wedding, too. Very pretty decorations, as well...you are talented!

Dhanggit said...

oh dear your cake is fabulous!! love those roses on it :-)

Joy said...

Your cake is just too pretty! I would definitely like it for a wedding cake. I need to learn how to pipe properly!

JMom said...

OMG, I am speechless. You are a decorating pro! That cake looks store bought and I mean that as a compliment ;)

Marq said...

Wow, you did an amazing job Courtney! Very creative, as always!

Andrea said...

Your roses are so pretty, and the flavors sound wonderful. Lovely job!

Antonio Tahhan said...

wow, what a beautiful cake!! the design looks so intricate - well done! I just passed your pot pie post, now i'm going to go back and read it. I've always wanted to make one at home

creampuff said...

Just gorgeous! I especially love the rose nectar!

KayKat said...

Whoa! That cake looks awesome! *wow* I'm seriously impressed :)

Lis said...

Holy cow, sweetie - that's so pretty!! I love your lil cake with the pretty frosting!

xoxo

Gretchen Noelle said...

Very, very creative! I would never have thought to use a rose type of flavoring. Great job making this your own!

Tartelette said...

You did a fabulous job on the challenge! Bravo!