Celebration Cakelettes

WOW…It’s been a long time between posts!  I wish that I could say I’ve been buried under layers of delicious cake, but instead I’ve simply been buried in the many layers of life.  I’ve missed my blog over the past month, but have found myself busy still with so much baking.  My monthly food column (“Dish”) in Front Row Monthly continues to challenge me as I’m learning to develop my own unique recipes.  I’ve also welcomed many new creative and fun baking projects for events from birthday celebrations to holidays to graduations…there is always fun to be had and with that MUST come delicious dessert!

As I find my way to the surface, I wanted to share my latest Front Row Monthly post with you (page 47) .  The May issue is their wedding issue and I was thrilled when they asked me to participate!  I was quite pleased with the way these cakelettes turned out and they were absolutely delicious!  I love the color contrast between the delicate frosting and the bold red velvet cake!  Below is my post for the magazine…ENJOY!

A wedding is an unforgettable milestone in one’s life that genuinely captures the strength of love shared between two people.  It is this love which creates the most meaningful of celebrations embraced by all beloved guests.  Therefore, when the reception approaches its inevitable end, it’s thoughtful to send them on their way with a small yet notable piece of the celebration as a token of thanks.  Having attended many wedding celebrations in my life, I know first-hand that nothing asserts “thank you” like a gift of sweet decadence.  These cakelettes represent a smaller version of the wedding cake and can be displayed on a mini cake stand at each place setting or in a simple gift box with an elegant ribbon.  Either way, these lovely cakes are a showstopper that will serve as a reminder of the special day, even if only for a short while.

Red Velvet Layer Cakelettes          {Print Recipe}

Cake:

3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour

3 Tbsp Dutch processed cocoa powder

1 ½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

12 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature

2 ¼ cups granulated sugar

¾ cups vegetable oil

3 large eggs, room temperature

1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract

1 ½ tsp white vinegar

1 Tbsp red food coloring

1 ½ cups buttermilk, room temperature

Making the cake:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter and flour 12 (3-inch) pans and line each pan with parchment paper.  Alternately, you can prepare 24 standard sized cupcake tins with liners.

Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt together in a medium bowl and set aside.

Place the butter, sugar and oil in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix until light and fluffy (about 4-5 minutes).  Add the eggs one at a time, allowing them to incorporate.  Scrape the sides of the bowl as necessary.  Add the vanilla, white vinegar and food coloring and combine until just incorporated.

Add the dry ingredients alternately with the buttermilk, in 3 additions, beginning and ending with the flour.  Mix well after each addition.  Divide the batter evenly into the pans and bake for 20-25 minutes (3-inch pans) or 16-18 minutes (cupcakes) or until a wooden skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.  Cool the cakes in the pan(s) on a cooling rack for about 15 minutes.  Remove the cakes from the pan by sliding a knife around the perimeter of the pan.  Allow the cakes to cool completely on a cooling rack before filling or frosting.

Mascarpone Cream Filling:

1 cup mascarpone cheese, room temperature

1 Tbsp granulated sugar

4-6 Tbsp heavy whipping cream

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

½ cup heavy whipping cream, chilled

Making the Filling:

Beat the mascarpone cheese and sugar on medium speed in the bowl of an electric mixture fitted with a whisk attachment until combined.  Slowly add 4-6 Tbsp heavy whipping cream and the vanilla and mix until well incorporated.  Set mixture aside.

Place ½ cup chilled whipping cream in a clean bowl and switch to a whisk attachment.  Beat the cream on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form and the cream holds its shape on the beater.  Gently fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone mixture until it is incorporated.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream:

3 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature cut into pieces

5 pasteurized egg whites (can be found in a carton in the egg section)

1 cup granulated sugar

2 Tbsp vanilla extract

Pinch of salt

Making the Buttercream:

Fill a medium saucepan one quarter to one half full with water.  Place the bowl of a stand mixer on top of the saucepan making sure that the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl.  Combine the egg whites, salt and sugar and whisk in the mixer bowl.  Continue to whisk constantly over medium heat until the egg mixture reaches 160 degrees F (use a candy thermometer).  Remove the mixer bowl from the heat and with a whisk attachment, place on the mixer stand and whisk until the bowl is cool to the touch, about 5 minutes.  Switch to the paddle attachment and adjust the speed to low.  Add the butter in about 8-10 portions mixing briefly between each addition.  Once all of the butter is added, increase the speed to medium and beat for about 5 minutes.  At some point, the mixture will look curdled, but just keep mixing and it will become smooth and shiny.  After 5 minutes, slowly add the vanilla extract and mix until it is fully incorporated.

Assembling the cakes:

Level the top of the cakes if necessary and slice the cooled cakes in half.  Place the first layer top side down on a small cake board or other flat surface.  Fill with about 2-3 Tbsp of the mascarpone filling.  Place the second layer of cake on top.  Repeat with another layer of filling and a third layer of cake, if desired.

Once assembled, frost the cakes with a thin layer of the buttercream on all sides and the top.  Chill the cakes for about 30 minutes to let the frosting set.  This step is called a “crumb coat” and ensures that the finished layer of frosting won’t have cake crumbs in it.  Once the frosting has set, select the tip of your choice and pipe a design on the cake or simply spread the buttercream onto the cake with an offset spatula.  All of the cakes can be frosted the same or each one can be unique.

Storage:  Store these cakes in an airtight container in the refrigerator for several days.  Remove the cakes from the refrigerator 2-3 hours before serving as these cakes are best served at room temperature for the most perfect texture and consistency.

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2 thoughts on “Celebration Cakelettes

  1. Oh, I missed you and your recipes!! As always, your hard work pays off….the cakelettes look delicious and oh so beautiful!! I look forward to reading your post in Front Row!

    Like

  2. Had to laugh to see your decadent cakes situated next to the bikini clad gal in Front Row’s “Firm Fit”!! She doesn’t look like she eats cake (although she would if she tried yours)!

    Like

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