Strawberry Cake with Classic Strawberry Buttercream
I doubled this recipe to have 3 layers, making a more impressive and taller cake.
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 package strawberry-flavored gelatin
4 eggs, room temperature
2¾ cups sifted flour
2½ teaspoons baking powder
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Fresh strawberries for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 (9-inch) cake pans then line with parchment paper. In bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter, sugar, and gelatin until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. In a separate bowl, combine flour and baking powder and add to butter mixture, alternating with additions of milk. Stir in vanilla and divide batter between pans. Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Place pans on a rack to cool. Remove cakes from and brush tops strawberry syrup. Using a spatula, ice cakes with a very thin layer of buttercream. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to assemble cake.
8 egg yolks (reserve egg whites for another recipe)
½ cup water
1 cup sugar
4 sticks butter, softened and cut into 1-inch pieces
½ cup strawberry syrup, recipe follows
Pink food coloring
1 cup strawberries, chopped
1 cup sugar
½ cup water
¼ cup Chambord liqueur
In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, place strawberries, sugar, and water. Bring mixture to a boil and cook for ## minutes, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and stir in liqueur. Continue to cook a few minutes more or until sauce thickens. Remove from heat and puree until completely smooth using a hand-held emulsifier. Transfer to a bowl and let cool to room temperature.
For buttercream, in bowl of an electric mixer using whisk attachment, beat yolks until light and fluffy, about 4 to 7 minutes. Meanwhile, in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, bring sugar and water to a boil. Swirl mixture and continue to cook until 238 degrees on candy thermometer. Immediately pour sugar syrup into eggs and begin to whisk on medium speed. Continue for about 5 minutes or until mixture thickens and doubles in volume, lightens in color and texture, and begins to cool. Reduce speed to low and continue to whip for 5 to 6 minutes more or until mixture is room temperature. Begin adding butter, one tablespoon at a time, until well incorporated. Slowly pour in strawberry syrup and 1 to 2 drops pink food coloring.
When ready to assemble, place 1 layer of cake in center of cake stand or serving platter. Spread approximately 1 cup buttercream on top. Add second layer and continue to ice entire cake with remaining buttercream. Garnish with fresh strawberries and serve with remaining strawberry syrup if desired. Refrigerate if not serving immediately and bring to room temperature when ready to serve.