Cherry Flower Power Cake

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ingredients

  • 3/4
    cup butter (1-1/2 sticks)
  • 6
    egg whites
  • 3
    cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2
    teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4
    teaspoon salt
  • 1/2
    teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/4
    cups buttermilk
  • 1/2
    cup maraschino cherry juice
  • 2 1/4
    cups sugar
  • 1 1/2
    teaspoons vanilla
  • 3/4
    teaspoon almond extract
  • 1
    recipe Cherry Frosting
  • 1
    recipe Candy Clay (optional)
 
directions1.Allow butter and egg whites to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, grease a 13x9x2-inch baking pan with butter; line bottom of pan with parchment. Grease paper. Flour pan with all-purpose flour; set aside. In medium bowl stir together flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. In 2-cup glass measuring cup combine buttermilk and cherry juice; set aside.2.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In large mixing bowl beat butter with mixer on medium to high for 30 seconds. Add sugar, vanilla, and almond extract; beat until combined. Add egg whites, a little at a time, beating well after each addition. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk mixture, beating on low after each addition just until combined.

3.Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake for 45 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched. Cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack.

4.Meanwhile, prepare Cherry Frosting and Candy Clay (if using). With a long serrated knife, cut cake in half crosswise. Place one half on a serving plate. Frost top with about 1 cup of frosting. Stack second half of cake. Thinly frost sides with a crumb coat. Chill cake for 10 minutes. Frost sides then top of cake with remaining frosting.

5.To decorate with Candy Clay, roll about two-thirds of the clay to 1/8-inch thickness. With sharp knife, cut a 7×11-inch rectangle. Cut scallop edges with 1-inch round cutter. Place across frosted cake, leaving 1-inch frosting border. For flowers, tint Candy Clay. Roll to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut 1/4×1-3/4-inch strips. Press narrow ends together to shape petals. Press into Candy Clay sheet using a dot of water to adhere. For centers, roll then coil thin strips of clay; attach with dot of water.

from the test kitchen*

  • To make 1 1/4 cups sour milk, place 4 teaspoons lemon juice or vinegar in a glass measuring cup. Add enough milk to make 1 1/4 cup liquid; stir. Let the mixture stand for 5 minutes before using.
  • Flowers can be made in advance and stored in an airtight container until ready to use.
Candy Clay
 
ingredients

  • 1
    12 ounce package white chocolate baking pieces or candy melts
  • 1/3
    cup light-color corn syrup
  • Food coloring
  • Powdered sugar
directions1.In medium-size microwave-safe bowl, melt candy at 100% power (high) for about 1 minute total, stopping to stir every 20 seconds, until melted and smooth. Do not overheat pieces.2.Stir in corn syrup with a rubber spatula until well-combined; mixture will look grainy. Tightly cover clay with plastic wrap. Let stand at room temperature at least 1 hour to firm. (Let semisweet chocolate clay stand at least 2 hours to firm.)

3.To roll firm clay, lightly dust a clean work surface with powdered sugar. Knead the clay until smooth. (To soften candy clay that was made several days ahead and has become firm, warm in a microwave for 5 to 10 seconds.)

4.Tint white candy clay with food coloring, kneading clay thoroughly to distribute color. Divide candy clay in small portions. To form shapes, work candy clay to resemble characters or designs. To roll clay, roll portions between sheets of waxed paper to 1/8-inch or less thickness. Cut shapes with cookie cutters, a small knife, or clean scissors. To keep clay pliable (or shapes from drying) while working with it, place clay and/or shapes on a baking sheet lined with waxed paper. Cover with plastic wrap.

from the test kitchen

  • Use this delicious, easy-to-shape white chocolate candy clay as you would fondant.

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