Last weekend I was in Chicago and Tim (the manfriend/boyfriend/luvahhhh boy) (LOL) (I crack myself up) (Tim loves being mentioned in the blog) (What do you think of my dramatic flair, honey? Too much?)
Okay, I should just start over. I was in Chicago and Tim took me to brunch at our favorite place. (Another side note: Can I call it OUR favorite if I’ve only been there twice, but I know Tim’s been there at least two more times without me?). Tim ordered Lemon Blueberry Pancakes. There is more to the story than that, like how the Lemon Blueberry Pancakes at Sarabeth’s in New York are my JAM, which is sort of another tangent all in itself now that I think about it. But basically, at this point, all you need to know is that Tim ordered Lemon Blueberry Pancakes at brunch.
The rest of the story can be continued at a later date. On THIS date, we are celebrating a very special birthday – the FIRST birthday of my first-born child. First-born-Internet-blog-like child anyway. And every birthday deserves a cake.
And Tim’s Lemon Blueberry Pancakes are an important detail because they inspired this Raspberry Lemon Cake. They actually inspired a Lemon Blueberry Cake, but the farmer’s market raspberries this week were soooooo gooooood.
And if I hadn’t been inspired my Tim’s pancakes, I probably would have ended up making a Funfetti cake because we all know (at least, now we all know) about my Funfetti birthday cake obsession-to-the-max.
Let me tell you about this cake. The batter is thick, which made me nervous. And it is a dense cake, sort of like a pound cake, but without being so buttery and heavy. It’s a little tangy and moist from the yogurt and a little tart with the raspberries.
This is how you can tell a boxed cake apart from a scratch cake: A boxed cake and icing is always overly sugared. A scratch cake should almost be not-sweet-enough. The flavors, and there should be multiple ones, should be a little more complex – tart and tangy, a bit of sugar, some gooey and crunchy texture from farmer’s market raspberries. A scratch cake should be paired with scratch frosting. Something buttery. Something that would be too sweet and rich to be eaten on its own – it needs that almost-not-sweet-enough cake. This homemade Lemon Buttercream is a little complicated compared to most other recipes I’ve seen, but the result is by far the smoothest and glossiest homemade frosting I’ve ever seen. And it sits perfectly atop this made-from-scratch Raspberry Greek Yogurt Cake.
1st Year Blog Highlights:
Most all-time recipe views: Green & Goat Cheese Pie with Potato Crust
Most all-time Slice of My Life views: Danielle Does Chicago!
Most views in the last week: Basic Overnight Steel-Cut Oats
Most views in the last quarter: Strawberry Lemon Buttermilk Pie
Most views in a single day: 1,087 on January 12, 2015
Most comments on a post: Jacque Torres Chocolate Chip Cookies
The post that kicked it all off on June 20, 2014: Rocky Road Fudge Bars (Please don’t click – the photos are horrible!!!)
Lastly, I want to ask YOU, my loyal readers and blog friends, what would you like to see in the next year? What ingredients, what recipes? What can I do to improve the website, to make it more user-friendly? What is the blog missing that you guys would love to see? Please leave comments – I’d love to hear from you!
Raspberry Greek Yogurt Cake with Lemon Buttercream
For the cake:
- 9 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 eggs separated
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup plain greek yogurt
- 1 cup raspberries fresh or frozen
For the buttercream:
- 5 large egg whites
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 1 pound unsalted butter 4 sticks, cut into tablespoons, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon pure lemon extract
For the cake:
Preheat oven to 320 degrees F. Grease and flour either four 6-inch cake pans or two 8- or 9-inch cake and set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks one at a time, mixing after each addition.
Add the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda and mix until mostly combined. Add the yogurt and mix until combined.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites to medium peaks and fold into the cake batter. Fold in the raspberries.
Divide the batter evenly between the pans and bake 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Let the cakes cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before turning them out onto a wire rack to cool completely before icing.
For the buttercream:
Combine egg whites, sugar, and salt in the heatproof bowl of a standing mixer set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk constantly by hand until mixture is warm to the touch and sugar has dissolved (the mixture should feel completely smooth when rubbed between your fingertips).
Attach the bowl to the mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Starting on low and gradually increasing to medium-high speed, whisking until stiff peaks form. Continue mixing until the mixture is fluffy and glossy, and completely cool (test by touching the bottom of the bowl), about 10 minutes.
Turn the mixer to medium-low speed, add the butter a few tablespoons at a time, mixing well after each addition. Once all the butter has been added, whisk in vanilla and lemon extracts. Switch to the paddle attachment, and continue beating on low speed until all air bubbles are eliminated, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl with a flexible spatula, and continue beating until the frosting is completely smooth.
To ice the cake:
Once the cake is completely cool, use a serrated knife to slice a thin layer off the top of the bottom layer. You want the bottom layer to be completely flat, so that the second layer will easily stack on top.
Spread a layer of icing on top of the first, flat layer, about 1/4-inch to 1/3-inch thick. Place the second cake layer on top. Using a knife, even spread the remaining buttercream over the top of the cake and down the sides. You may also use a pastry bag with icing tips for decorative frosting.