Spring Strawberry Cake.
If you don’t mind me saying so, it is a thing of beauty.
If you’re not ready for spring, this cake should do the trick. It will magically get you in the mood for sunny days, crisp weather, blue skies, and sweet, sweet strawberries.
This recipe is quick and easy to put together. It’s a bit like strawberry shortcake but all in one pan. Simple and elegant enough for guests but also great just by itself with tea for breakfast….um, I mean dessert.
Here’s what you need:
Strawberries, Flour, Sugar, Butter, Egg, Baking Powder, Salt, Milk, and Vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Like most cakes and baked goodies, we begin by sifting the dry ingredients together.
Using a sifter or fine mesh strainer, sift 1 1/2 cups of flour with 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder…
and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
Sifting not only removes any lumps but it also helps lighten the dry ingredients and evenly distributes the baking powder which makes the cake rise. It’s an important step so don’t skip the sifting.
In a large bowl or mixer, combine 6 Tablespoons of softened, room temperature butter (unsalted butter, please) with 1 cup of sugar.
6 Tablespoons is 3/4 of a stick of butter. Use some of the extra butter remaining in the stick to liberally grease a standard 10 inch pie pan.
Back to the mixer, mix the butter and sugar on medium high speed until it is pale yellow, light, and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Don’t forget to scrape down the sides and bottom to get everything combined.
Add 1 egg and 1/2 cup whole milk.
For great flavor, add 1 teaspoon of real vanilla extract.
Mix again on medium speed until all of the wet ingredients are thoroughly combined with the butter and sugar.
With the mixer on the lowest speed, slowly add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients. Mix only until the flour is incorporated. Do not over-mix.
Spoon the cake batter into the buttered pie plate and smooth the top to make an even layer.
Wash and dry 1 pound of fresh strawberries. It is very important that the berries be dry or your cake will get soggy. Cut the stems off and cut each strawberry in half.
Arrange the berries cut side down on top of the batter. Get the strawberries as close as possible so you can use them all.
I did have a few extras but I was happy to eat them. No evidence of leftovers.
Sprinkle the top of the berries with 1 Tablespoon of sugar.
Bake the cake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes then turn the oven down to 325 degrees and continue to bake for 45 minutes more.
The cake is done when it is puffed up, golden brown, and a toothpick inserted into the cake part (not a berry) comes out clean.
Allow the cake to cool in the pan on a wire rack.
This cake is not too sweet so if you want to get really crazy, a nice big dollop of whipped cream or cool whip might be in order.
This great thing about this recipe is that it is totally adaptable to any kind of fruit that you like. Cherries, raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries would all be wonderful. I might also experiment with pears. Pick your favorite or mix and match!
Think spring! Think strawberries! Think cake!
Here’s the recipe: Adapted from Martha Stewart