31 January 2009

Neapolitan Birthday Cake

Turner turns 28 years old today, so only a special birthday cake would do for such a special man. My inspiration for this cake came from the container of Betty Crocker Strawberry Mist frosting that we were given by former expats who left last spring. Like all foods chock full of preservatives, this frosting is shelf stable for about two years, but I figured now would be a good time to use it. Also, in the fruit stands around the city, the strawberries have been temptingly red and plump these days.

I wanted to do a layer cake that involved strawberries but did not want the cake to be all strawberries, so I decided on a Neapolitan cake based on the ice cream that has vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry all in one. Looking for recipes proved fairly daunting as most cake recipes make two 9-inch cakes but in only one flavor. It always takes some G
oogle ingenuity to find the right search words that result in appropriate hits. I finally found this recipe from King Arthur Flour for a Choco-Vanilla Cake that I used to make two heart-shaped cakes, one vanilla and one chocolate. I cut each cake in half so I had four layers total and alternated them using strawberry jam as the filling.
After I made the layers, it was time to get creative with the strawberries. I had about half a pound to play with. In the middle of the cake, I added sliced strawberries to the jam, which created an interesting pattern of polka dots on the chocolate background. (This would be a cute way to top a cake in the future.) Once the cake was assembled, I opened the container of frosting to find Barbie-pink, sugary frosting, not all that appropriate for a 28-year-old male, but it was part of the plan so I had to run with it. I chopped some of the strawberries that were not pretty enough for the garnish and mixed them in, hoping to temper to tooth-aching sweetness. This made the frosting fairly difficult to spread, so I think I will shy away from adding chunks to frosting in the future, but everything worked out in the end.

1 comment:

  1. Yummy cake for the birthday boy!!!!!