So today is not a baking day. Or a cooking day, for that matter. On these days, all I want to eat for dinner is a big bowl of cereal filled to the brim with vanilla soy milk. Anyway, let's think of better days when there was an excess of baking inspiration. :)
Let's talk about strawberries and cake. Or even better, strawberries in cake. Most of the cakes I come up with are a mix-and-match of recipes I find on cooking sites, like Allrecipes.com and The Food Network. The frozen strawberries in my freezer were the inspiration for this cake. Let's take a look at them...
Ohhh, pretty, huh? :) Berries actually freeze really well...and sometimes they even taste better frozen, like this. Anyway, this really was a deliciously moist cake. Some ideas for spicing it up? Maybe stir in thinly sliced strawberries in the frosting? Also, I had lots of almonds hanging around, but chopped walnuts would also taste great. To make this cake even fancier, slice the cake into four layers instead of two, and alternate strawberry jam and cream cheese frosting between the layers.
Strawberry Patch Cake
Adapted from "Jesse and Steve's Fresh Strawberry Cake"...Allrecipes.com
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
4 tbsp. sour cream
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup mashed strawberries
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe courtesy of Cathy Love...foodnetwork.com
4 oz. butter, softened
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
about 3/4 cup almonds, sliced
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13-inch pan with non-stick cooking spray. Cut a piece of wax paper to fit onto the bottom of the pan. Spray with non-stick cooking spray. Dust bottom and sides of pan with flour. Tedious, I know, but this is a sure-fire way to know that your cake won't stick when you try to get it out!
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs, and beat for 1 minute. Stir in vanilla and salt.
In a small bowl, stir together sour cream and baking soda until the soda has dissolved. Add sour cream mixture and flour to egg mixture. Beat well, and stir in mashed strawberries.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in cetner comes out clean. The top of the cake should spring back when lightly touched. After cake has cooled for 10 minutes, remove from pan.
While cake cools, prepare cream cheese frosting. In a small bowl, beat together butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer. With mixer on low speed, add powdered sugar one cup at a time until smooth and creamy. Beat in vanilla extract.
When cake is completely cool, slice into two 4.5x6.5-inch layers. Place one layer on a serving dish, and spread half of the frosting over the cake. Top with second layer. Ice with remaining frosting, and top cake with sliced almonds.