Dorie’s Perfect Party Cake

This month’s Daring Bakers challenge was, as usual, a challenge. Morven of Food Art and Random Thoughts chose Dorie Greenspan’s Perfect Party Cake from Baking: From my Home to Yours. And let me tell you, it is perfect for a party. I’ve never made a layer cake. I decided to make mini-cakes. You might think this is cheating, but I think it was harder than just frosting 1 layer cake. I had 9 little cakes to frost! I was going to be taking the cake to a friend’s house and didn’t want everyone to think I was weird snapping photos of the cake once the first piece was cut. And this way, hubby could have some for himself.

I followed the directions almost exactly. I know some other DBers got daring in their flavor combinations, but I love lemon and raspberry so I stuck with it.

Here are my ingredients ready to be beaten, stirred, and shaken into a wonderful cake. I forgot to get the buttermilk out of the fridge prior to the photo shoot. Don’t worry, I did use the buttermilk in the cake!

This is what happened when I added the 2nd part of the dry ingredients. I wasn’t careful enough and flour flew everywhere. I know this picture is not the best, but it was funny. I have always been a messy baker and probably always will be.

As you can see, my cakes didn’t rise very much during their time in the oven. They were definitely done since the sides were pulling away from the pan. Based on what other DBers have said throughout the month, it seems like a lot of other people’s cakes didn’t rise much either.

To make my mini-cakes, I baked the cake as directed in two 9″ cake pans. I then used a 3″ round cookie cutter (biscuit cutter would also work here) to cut 7 three-inch rounds out of each 9″ pan. So I had 14 mini-cakes.

Then I cut each one in half horizontally with a serrated knife. I didn’t want to have 4 layers for my mini-cakes because they would have been out of proportion. And I wouldn’t have had enough for hubby to have one! So I decided to make them with 3 layers each. Thus, I got 9 mini-layer-cakes with one layer leftover to taste-test. I also got to taste-test all the scraps from cutting out the rounds. This cake is amazing. I love the texture of this cake.

I’ve recently fallen in love with Swiss buttercream. The DB Yule Log that we made in December was the first time I had ever made it and I’m in love! Don’t be intimidated by the eggs. The frosting is worth the extra effort.

As I mentioned, I used the lemon buttercream and raspberry preserves for my filling.

I definitely underestimated the amount of time it would take to decorate my mini-cakes. I found that the buttercream and preserves were very slippery and the layers slid around when I tried to frost the sides. So I decided to apply a crumb-coat of frosting first and throw them into the freezer for about 5 minutes. Then it was easier to apply the final layer of frosting. I didn’t worry about making it pretty because I knew I wanted to put coconut on the outside.

Everyone at the get together I went to loved these little guys. The texture of the cake was AMAZING. So soft and smooth. I will definitely be making this cake again.

Thanks to Morven for hosting this month. Click here for the entire recipe.

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11 Responses to “Massaged Kale Salad”

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    1
    Lauren — August 30, 2010 at 11:23 am

    I’m so glad you posted this! Aarti’s kale salad is on my list of dishes to make, and it’s good to know that you guys enjoyed it.

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    Fun and Fearless in Beantown — August 30, 2010 at 12:49 pm

    I saw this on the first episode of Aarti Party and it looked so good to me! Kale is something I’ve also never worked with in our kitchen so I definitely want to give this recipe a try!

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    Josie — August 30, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    I love kale, and I was intrigued by this as well – I really want to try it now! Great picture!

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    Lauren — August 30, 2010 at 2:12 pm

    I picked up all of the ingredients this morning to make the salad, and it is now sitting in my fridge waiting to be devoured for lunch. It’s GREAT! Who knew raw kale could be so good?!

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    Lizzy — August 30, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    Kale is one of my favorite foods but I haven’t had it raw yet. I am bookmarking this!

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    Kate — August 30, 2010 at 4:00 pm

    Wow sounds interesting! I’m very curious to try it myself. I love kale.

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    Christine — August 30, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    I saw this on Aarti Party too – looks good – glad you tried it!

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    We Are Not Martha — August 31, 2010 at 1:51 am

    I love kale and am on a new-found mango kick, so I’m sure this is absolutely wonderful 🙂

    Sues

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    Sherry G — August 31, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    I don’t know if I could get anyone in my family to try this, but it looks so interesting! I have never tried kale, but I would like to!

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    Cara — August 31, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    I made a massaged kale salad once but it was just “eh”. I don’t think I massaged enough. But I might have to try it again, and do it the right way, since you both loved it!

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    Elina — September 2, 2010 at 6:48 pm

    I LOVE massaged kale – love, love, love it. It tastes completely different than “regular” – not as “green” if that makes sense. 🙂
    I also love the next food network star. I should check out Aarti’s show since this recipe sounds like it’s right up my alley. 🙂

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