White Layer Cake

From Cook's Country | August/September 2012

Why this recipe works:

We developed a recipe for White Layer Cake to bake up moist, tender, and flavorful, rather than dry and bland. We used a reverse creaming method for a sturdy cake with a tender crumb. Plenty of butter and vanilla extract add moisture and flavor to our White Layer Cake.

We developed a recipe for White Layer Cake to bake up moist, tender, and flavorful, rather than dry and bland. We used a reverse creaming method for a sturdy cake with a tender crumb. Plenty of butter and vanilla extract add moisture and flavor to our White Layer Cake.

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Makes three 8-inch layers or two 9-inch layers

If you’ve forgotten to bring the milk and egg white mixture to room temperature, set the bottom of the measuring cup containing it in a sink of hot water and stir until the mixture feels cool rather than cold, around 65 degrees. Cake layers can be wrapped and stored for one day.

Ingredients

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 2 1/4 cups cake flour, plus more for dusting pans
  • 1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
  • 6 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened but still cool

Instructions

  1. 1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray three 8-inch round cake pans with nonstick cooking spray, dust with flour, and tap pans to remove excess flour. Mix milk, egg whites, and vanilla together in 2-cup measuring cup.

    2. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt together in bowl of electric mixer at low speed. Add butter and beat at low speed until mixture resembles moist crumbs, with no powdery streaks remaining.

    3. Add all but 1/2 cup of milk mixture to crumbs and beat at medium speed (or high speed if using handheld mixer) for 1 1/2 minutes. Add remaining 1/2 cup of milk mixture and beat 30 seconds more. Stop mixer and scrape sides of bowl. Return mixer to medium (or high) speed and beat 20 seconds longer.

    4. Divide batter evenly between three prepared cake pans and using rubber spatula, spread into even layer. Arrange pans at least 3 inches from the oven walls and 3 inches apart. (If oven is small, place pans on upper middle and lower middle racks in staggered fashion to allow for air circulation.) Bake until thin skewer or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 21 to 25 minutes.

    5. Rest cakes in pans 3 minutes, then loosen from sides of pans with a knife. Invert onto large plate, reinvert onto wire racks. Cool completely, about 1 1/2 hours.

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