There’s always room for cake, especially in my household. Cake is just one of those things that brings a little joy to each of us, and what better way to lift your mood, than with a buttery slice. I read a lot of cake recipes and blogs, and one blog that I am particularly fond of is Cake by Courtney. She has modernized cake flavors and made decorating a bit more simplistic for the home baker, and she even teaches online classes for those who could use a tip, or two on how to bake, frost and decorate a cake. One cake particularly caught my eye this month, and that was this recipe for Chai Cake.
Chai is a mix of earthy spices that is often associated with tea, but you sometimes run across chai flavored chocolates, cookies, and now cake. The subtle spice mixture is what is unique about this cake because it reminds me of a blonde spice cake, slightly different from the traditional holiday spice cake recipes you may have baked. I did change a few things in the recipe to accommodate my baking style and taste; like using two 8-inch pans, instead of three 6-inch pans. It just seems more practical for home bakers and most households already have these type of cake pans in their cupboards. I also changed up the amount of eggs in the recipe because I only had six instead of seven, and it all worked out for the best. As for the spices, I also adjusted some of them downward to accommodate my palate and how nicely I thought they would taste in a cake.
The frosting is American buttercream, as opposed to French, but that’s another blog about frosting. I like her idea of adding some melted white chocolate in the frosting because it brings out a specific sweetness that is not often seen in frosting, and it balances out the chai cake flavors. The raspberries in this cake are dotted in the center and on top, and if you didn’t have raspberries, you could substitute another berry, and it would taste just as nice. I think this cake is a real stunner, especially with a little Swedish sugar sprinkled over the surface for decoration. Chances are most people wouldn’t have such sugar in their pantries, so organic cane sugar would work too, and give it a slight glistening. Who doesn’t have a sparkly cake?!
3 cups cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
5 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 cups butter, room temperature
5 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons heavy cream
4 ounce white chocolate
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1 pint fresh raspberries
(Makes 1 Cake)
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray two 8-inch pans with non-stick spray and line bottoms with parchment.
- In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and all the seasonings, set aside.
- In stand mixer, Cream butter and sugar on medium speed for 3 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs one-at-a-time, mixing in between each addition. Add vanilla and mix again for 30 seconds.
- Add dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with buttermilk, while mixing on low speed. Spoon batter into pans evenly, and smooth out on top.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes or until toothpick comes clean. Remove and let cool in pans for 20 minutes, before inverting on a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make frosting – In a small glass measuring cup, mix together white chocolate and cream. Heat for 30 seconds, repeat and stir until smooth.
- In a large stand mixer, mix butter on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add sugar and mix for 2 minutes. Add cooled white chocolate, vanilla, and salt. Continue to mix until smooth, about 2 minutes.
- To assemble – place on layer of cake on cake stand and top with 1 cup of frosting. Cover frosting with raspberries and top with remaining layer of cake. Dollop remaining frosting over top, and using an offset spatula or knife, move frosting down sides and smooth out on top (I left mine a little nude around sides). Top with remaining raspberries. Refrigerate until 4 hours before serving. Enjoy!