This is the most cheerful-looking cake I think I’ve ever seen. It just invites you right up and begs you to take a giant slice!
It’s hard to get strawberry flavor to come through in baked goods-this one has a delicate flavor which is amplified by the fact that everything is pink, which I believe makes the strawberry flavor more pronounced (even if it’s all in my head).
You start by roasting strawberries to bring out the sweetness and concentrate the flavor-then puree until smooth and cook down on the stove to further intensify the strawberry flavor. The cake is a very light and delicate cake and turns out the most pretty-in-pink color.
Some of the puree will end up in our 7-minute Swiss meringue frosting. Would you believe I’ve never made a meringue frosting before?! It was surprisingly easy, especially in my Kitchenaid stand mixer where I literally did no work and ended up with this beautiful, fluffy frosting. And, brace yourselves, you’re going to have a very thick layer of pink frosting to adorn the top of this cake. Ain’t nothing wrong with that. I highly, highly recommend sprinkling the top with Fancy Sprinkles Rose Gold sprinkles because they’re beautiful, tasty and pleasantly crunchy. There is a variety of shapes, colors and sizes so they add a whole eye-catching visual component to the top. Good luck refraining from putting them on everything! Let’s be honest though…all sprinkles are welcome here so pick whatever you want!
This would be perfect for any occasion where a pink cake with sprinkles is warranted, like a bridal party, baby shower or girl’s birthday party. Ooohh or you can bookmark this one and come back to it for Valentine’s Day or Easter!! Or just make it for your Friday night. We don’t always need an special occasion to make a fancy cake. I would even submit that cake is perfect for every day and if you want to make a cake on a Monday night, you go girl (or guy)!
A delicately flavored strawberry cake with a fluffy Swiss Meringue buttercream frosting flavored with more strawberry! Required: lots of sprinkles for topping.
ROASTED STRAWBERRY PUREE:
- 2-1/2 cup (425 grams) strawberries, hulled and sliced
- 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 3 drops of red food coloring, optional
STRAWBERRY SHEET CAKE:
- 2-3/4 cup (330 grams) cake flour, plus more for dusting the pan
- 2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- Pinch of kosher salt
- 2 sticks (226 grams) butter, at room temperature
- 1-3/4 cups (347 grams) granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- 6 large egg whites
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup strawberry puree (from above)
- Softened butter, for greasing the pan
STRAWBERRY MERINGUE BUTTERCREAM:
- 3 large egg whites
- 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
- 2 sticks (226 grams) butter, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup strawberry puree (from above)
- 2 to 3 drops red food coloring, optional
- Sprinkles, for topping
- To make the roasted strawberry puree: Preheat the oven to 350°. Place the sliced strawberries on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle the sugar over top and toss to coat. Spread into a single layer. Transfer to the oven and roast for 13 to 15 minutes, until the strawberries have softened and released some of their juice. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
- Add the strawberries and their liquid to a blender and blend until smooth. Mix in 3 drops of red food color to intensify the color. Transfer the puree to a small saucepan and cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, until the mixture has reduced and thickened slightly. You should end up with a little less than 1 cup of puree. Allow to cool completely before using.
- To make the strawberry sheet cake: Keep the oven heating at 350°. Grease and flour a 9 x 13-inch baking pan and set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt. Stir together to combine.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the butter and sugar. Cream together until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Combine the milk, egg whites, vanilla extract and 1/2 cup of the strawberry puree and whisk to incorporate.
- With the mixer on low speed, begin adding the dry ingredients and the strawberry mixture in thirds, alternating between the dry and wet mixtures. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl a few times to ensure the mixture is fully incorporated.
- Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and spread to the sides and even the top. Transfer to the oven and bake for approximately 25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for at least 30 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- When the cake has cooled, make the Strawberry Meringue Buttercream: Prepare a double boiler with a glass bowl fitted over a saucepan of simmering water, ensuring the bottom of the bowl does not come in contact with the simmering water. Add the egg whites and sugar, whisking to combine. Heat the mixture until it reaches 140°; the sugar will be dissolved completely at this point. Carefully transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. The bowl will feel hot to the touch. Beat for 7 minutes, until the mixture is white and very fluffy. The sides of the bowl should feel cool to the touch at this point. Change the mixer attachment to the paddle. With the mixer on low speed, add the butter, a cube at a time, until the frosting is completely smooth and fluffy. Pour in the 1/3 cup strawberry puree and beat to combine. If the mixture starts to separate, you can remove about 1/4 cup of the frosting and heat until melted; with the mixture running, pour in the melted frosting and beat until the frosting becomes smooth again. Add enough red food coloring to achieve your desired color.
- When the cake is completely cool, frost the top of the cake, using an offset spatula to push the frosting to the sides and smooth the top. Generously sprinkle with lots of sprinkles and serve!
Inspiration: Strawberry Sheet Cake with Rhubarb Swiss Meringue Frosting on acozykitchen.com