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Classic Birthday Cake

gluten free birthday cakeI spent the afternoon baking today. I made 2 loaves of bread and a birthday cake for my little sister. I made yellow cake from a closely guarded secret family recipe (it is at the end of this post). I have made this cake before with lots of success. It is everything a yellow cake should be – rich and moist with a delicate crumb.

I tried it with a new AP flour blend that my parents had at their house, where I was this weekend for a wedding, my sister’s birthday and a trip to the annual Wilton tent sale. This blend is not one I will buy or use again, because it does not actually work cup for cup. And I know that for most people, a cup for cup blend is the least scary approach to baking. So, here is a recipe that my family has been making for quite a while, copied from the sheet where my mom has it written down.

At least now that it is frosted it looks good. And, the frosting makes it super delicious. (Ok, so I eat cake for the frosting).

Yellow Birthday Cake with Chocolate Frosting
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Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Prep time: 30 mins
Cook time: 25 mins
Total time: 55 mins
Serves: 12
A classic yellow cake with delicious chocolate frosting.
Ingredients
  • 3 cups Gluten-Free Multi-Purpose Flour or 13 1/2 ounces of your own blend
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if using Jules’ Nearly Normal Flour)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup room-temperature milk
  • 1 3/4 cups unsweetened natural cocoa
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, very soft
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (or use chocolate extract if you have it)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease 2 8″ round cake pans.
  2. Whisk together the flour or flour blend and xanthan gum.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer beat together the sugar, soft butter, salt, baking powder, and vanilla until smooth. Add 2 eggs, and beat for about a minute at a high speed, until fluffy.
  4. Scrape the bowl and beat in the other 2 eggs.
  5. Beat in the milk and flour alternately (adding about a third of each at a time).
  6. Separate the batter evenly between the pans. Bake for about 25 minutes. A cake tester inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  7. Remove from the oven, and cool for 5 to 10 minutes before turning out of the pan to cool on a rack.
  8. Once the cake is cool, you can make the frosting.
  9. Sift together the 1 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar with the cocoa.
  10. Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan. Stirring constantly so the milk does not scald. Whisk this into the powdered sugar mixture. Let cool to room temperature, about 20 mins.
  11. Beat soft butter, vanilla extract and salt until creamy. Add the 2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar and mix slowly until incorporated. With mixer on low, add the chocolate mixture a spoonful at a time.
  12. If the frosting is too loose, add up to an additional half cup of powdered sugar.
  13. Frost the cake and enjoy.
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