Berry Cake From Cakes By Melissa By Melissa Ben-Ishay, Brought To You By Sutter Home Wine Book Club
Wine Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon
This Berry Cake is fancy for a reason. It’s for when you want a pretty cake that’s also light and delicious and, yes, even a little over the top. It’s the irresistible way to enjoy your girl’s night and book club night in.
Berry Cake Recipe Ingredients
- 1 recipe Classic Vanilla Cake (see below)
- 1 recipe Whipped Vanilla Icing (see below)
- 2 to 3 cups mixed fresh berries (whatever’s in season)
- Fresh mint sprigs, for garnish
- Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Butter a 13 x 18-inch half- sheet pan, then line it with wax paper or parchment and butter the paper.
- Mix the cake batter according to the recipe directions. Pour into the prepared pan and bake until the middle of the cake feels springy when you gently press your finger against it, 35 to 40 minutes.
- Set aside to cool completely. Meanwhile, make the whipped vanilla icing and stash it in the freezer until you’re ready to frost the cake.
- Use a six-inch round cutter to cut three rounds from the cake. Place one cake layer on a turntable and thickly frost the top with about a third of the vanilla icing; spread the icing out just over the edge of the layer. Spoon a few tablespoons of fruit on top. Repeat with the remaining layers, until reaching the final layer.
- Generously top the cake with the remaining mixed berries. Garnish with the sprigs of mint and lightly dust with confectioners’ sugar.
Classic Vanilla Cake
- ½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs
- 3 cups all- purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 1¾ cups whole milk (or buttermilk; let the cup overflow a bit)
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter the pan of your choice (see page 31) or line the pan with wax paper or parchment and butter the paper. This will make the edges less crispy. (I’m not an edge girl; I like the middle of the cake.)
- With a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip the butter for one minute on high speed, then scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Add the sugar and beat on high speed for two minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl again.
- Add the vanilla extract. While mixing at medium-low speed, add the eggs one at a time.
- Scrape down the edges of the bowl midway through.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, and sea salt in a separate bowl.
- With the mixer on low speed, add half the flour mixture.
- When it’s mostly incorporated, add half the milk.
- Add the remainder of the dry and wet ingredients, scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions.
- Stop mixing as soon as you have a smooth batter.
- Take the paddle attachment of the mixer and lick the batter—it should be delicious!
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until the middle of the cake feels springy when you gently press your finger against it (see page 31 for approximate baking times). All ovens are different, so it’s important to do the fingerprint test to see if the cake is done.
Let the cake cool completely before icing.
Whipped Vanilla Icing
- 2 cups heavy cream at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
- If possible, chill the bowl and the whisk attachment of a hand or stand mixer for at least half an hour before using. All of your ingredients should be cold.
- Pour the cream, vanilla, and sugar into the chilled bowl and whip on high speed until stiff peaks form, about two minutes.
Find the recipe for Berry Cake and more in Cakes by Melissa.
She’s also the creative force behind the delicious bite-size cupcake brand Baked by Melissa.
Cakes by Melissa book page: Cakes by Melissa
Discover the genius of the sheet pan! Many of Melissa’s layer cakes are
baked in a half- or quarter-sheet pan and then cut into rounds with
cutters of multiple sizes. One of the many reasons for this is that it
automatically gives you layers with a neat, trimmed edge with no brown crust.
You can leave the sides of this cake exposed, which is a very pretty effect and shows off your fillings. Also, consider the clean-up! Fewer pans to wash means more time left to cuddle up with a book.