Happy New Year! I always seem to forget that just because the holidays are over it doesn’t mean I can go back to wearing skirts and tanks. So, even though it isn’t technically Christmas anymore, the snow on the ground, my short-circuiting space heater, and my super sexy thermal underwear all revealed to me that it’s still okay to make a white cake for winter.
Let it snow.
This cake was inspired by Southern Living‘s “A Very Southern Christmas” issue, which highlights cake contest winners. This year’s winner was a white cake with white frosting that had little fondant snowflakes as decorations.
And while the cake was beautiful, sometimes Southern Living‘s recipes are wonky, so I decided not to put my family through a potentially disastrous culinary experiment and made a tried-and-true white cake with my white chocolate ganache buttercream frosting. What makes this cake a smidge more wintery is the layers of white chocolate peppermint frosting between the 8″ rounds [done with a dash of peppermint extract].
It only took about 4 hours total to make this cake…so, between the short time needed, having the oven on for warmth, and the extra insulating layers this cake is sure to add to your body, how could you go wrong?
*Sidenote: Best part of the season? Winterizing your body. Happy 2013 non-dieting, everyone 😉
[White cake recipe can be found here from Wedding Cakes for You. Makes the three 8″ x 2″ deep shown in the photos]
White chocolate ganache/peppermint buttercream frosting [*Note: This makes enough for the filling and frosting of the cake. It’s an extremely light and not-too-sweet frosting].
- Electric mixer
- Double boiler or microwave
- 16 oz. white chocolate
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 4 sticks unsalted butter, rm. temp.
- 4 cups sifted powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1 1/2 tsp. peppermint extract
- Wilton’s white icing coloring [optional]
Chop the chocolate and melt with the heavy cream in a double boiler or carefully in the microwave. Let cool to rm. temp., about 30 min., stirring occasionally.
Beat the butter and 1 cup of sifted powdered sugar in a large bowl at low speed for 30 seconds. Increase speed and beat until light and fluffy.
Add 4 cups of sifted powdered sugar, alternating with the milk and beating at low speed after each addition. Add MOST of the white chocolate ganache [I always find I need only about 3/4 of it] and beat on med-high speed until it reaches a spreading consistency.
This is where I add Wilton’s white icing coloring, just because most buttercreams tend to be a bit beige in color and I wanted this cake to be extremely white. Just add however much you want and STIR in to make sure all of the coloring is incorporated.
Scoop out about a cup of frosting and place in a small bowl. Stir in the peppermint extract. Use this frosting to go between the layers of the cake.
*Note: Sometimes getting a very smooth-looking surface on buttercream cakes can be tough. An easy trick is to put the frosted cake in the fridge for a few hours until the buttercream hardens, then take it out and smooth the ridges in the frosting with a heated spatula. To heat the spatula, dip it in very hot water, shake off the excess water, then use to smooth the cake. Dab up any excess water with a paper towel. I like to move vertically over the ridges, as this make the smoothing easier.