4th of July Layer Cake

I love layer cakes. Every time someone has a party I make one. They’re too big for me to make all the time. Between the two of us we’d never be able to eat it. A holiday themed cake is even better! I have the best mom she sent me 4th of July sprinkles and whatever else they had at wal-mart. We celebrated one day early.

I made a simple white cake from my Betty Crocker Cookbook (New Edition) and the usual vanilla buttercream I like to use from Martha Stewart. I think the cake tasted very good and most of it was gone when we left.

Silver White Cake
adapted from Betty Crocker

2 1/2 cups self rising flour
1 2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup shortening
1 1/4 cup milk
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
5 large egg whites
1. Heat oven to 180 C/350 F. Grease bottom and sides of 3 8 inch round pans with shortening and lightly flour.

2. In large bowl, beat all ingredients except egg whites and with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping bowl constantly. Beat on high speed for 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.

3. Beat egg whites in a separate bowl until stiff. Using a spatula gently fold the egg whites into the batter until combined.

The recipe in the book called to just pour the liquid egg whites in and then beat for 2 minutes. I read the recipe wrong but I like the way I did it better I think.

4. Bake for 23-25 minutes until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center. Cool for 10 minutes remove from pans to wire rack and cool completely.
I wrapped each layer in saran wrap and cooled in the fridge overnight to frost the next day

Fluffy Vanilla Buttercream
from Martha Stewart Cupcakes

1 1/2 cups unsalted butter at room temperature
1 pounds icing sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1. With an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium-high until pale and creamy, about 2 minutes.
2. Reduce speed to medium. Add the icing sugar ½ cup at a time, beating after each addition and scraping down sides of bowl as needed; after every two additions, raise speed to high and beat 10 seconds to aerate the frosting, then return to medium. This should take about 5 minutes. Frosting will be pale and fluffy.
3. Add vanilla and beat until frosting is smooth

The frosting needs to be spread evenly over each layer. One of my layers cracked slightly so I used this as the middle and the frosting acts as a patch. The prettiest layer should be placed on the top. Make sure each layer is placed evenly on top of the one below. Otherwise you’ll have a lopsided cake.

It’s easiest to frost with a cake spatula. One batch of buttercream is enough to frost the cake once (typically called the crumb layer). To frost a second time a second batch or half batch would be needed.

Frosting a second layer over this first layer would just make the appearance more smooth. I only did one layer this time. I think next time I’ll do two to see how smooth I can make it.

For the trim I dyed some extra frosting blue and used a Wilton 21tip. I have a Wilton Manual of Cake Decorating: Course 1 and this is one of the techniques. My top layer was a little crooked. I could use more practice.

The writing says Happy 4th of July. The white in the middle is hard to see in the photo

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