join me in the kitchen

Yellow Cake with Quick Vanilla Frosting

As I mentioned, my husband ran the Boston Marathon on Monday and I am incredibly proud of him!

This was his first marathon and he ran with the Dana Farber team as part of the Dana Farber Marathon Challenge (DFMC).  He raised more than $5,000 towards Claudia Adams Barr Program in Innovative Basic Cancer Research.

While I didn’t participate in the weekly Dana Farber team runs or the training sessions with 1976 Boston marathon winner (now coach) Jack Fultz, I did meet him and other team members here and there and I did attend the pasta party on Sunday evening prior to the race.

I cannot say enough about this organization. I am incredibly impressed and inspired by what a wonderful group of kind individuals that they are. The pasta party was perfectly touching and inspiring. It felt like we (well, really my husband) and all of the other runners really made an impact and contributed toward the group’s goal of a world without cancer. I left the evening feeling touched, emotional, uplifted, and inspired.

Race day was GORGEOUS! There was such a wonderful BUZZ in the city. My husband did incredibly well and cheering for him was so exhilarating. All of his hard work paid off. I am proud of his accomplishment and feel so lucky to live with someone who inspires me every day.

Now on to the cake!

As you know, I spend quite a bit of time researching new and creative cake recipes/flavors/frosting combinations, sometimes to the point where my head feels like it is going to explode! (Remember how hard it was for me to decide what I should make for my nephew’s birthday cake?  And remember when I could not for the life of me settle on which  fruit-flavored cupcakes I should make?) What’s funny is whenever I ask my husband what kind of cake he wants the answer is always the same: yellow cake with vanilla frosting. I always dismiss it thinking it is too plain and too simple

This time, however, I didn’t even ask. This cake was in honor of his tremendous commitment to fundraising and training and if he likes plain on plain, that is what he should get!

Of course, I didn’t want it to be too plain. So, even though I usually try not to make a habit of eating or serving fluorescent-colored foods, I went out on a limb here and matched the frosting to the Dana Farber team shirts.

This isn't my husband--this photo is taken from the DF site.

Like the race, the cake was successful. It was moist and simple.  The key to the frosting is the perfect balance of milk and sugar. (I think this batch of frosting actually turned out a tad dry–it needed a touch more milk.) 

What a wonderful occasion it was for cake, celebration, and time with family!

Yellow Cake:

  • shortening
  • 1  tablespoon  all-purpose flour
  • 1/2  cup  butter
  • 8 oz.  sour cream
  • 1 1/2  cups  granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2  teaspoons  vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 2  cups  all-purpose flour
  • 1  teaspoon  baking soda
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 3/4  cup buttermilk

 Rub shortening on the bottom of two 9-inch round cake pans.  Sprinkle with flour.  Set aside.

Combine 1/2 cup butter and sour cream in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk until well blended. Add sugars and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Beat with a mixer at medium speed 3 minutes or until well blended. Add eggs; beat 2 minutes or until well blended.

Lightly spoon 2 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine 2 cups flour, baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt, stirring well with a whisk. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix after each addition. Pour batter into prepared pan. Sharply tap pan once on counter to remove air bubbles. Bake at 350 F for 27-30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pans. Cool completely on wire rack.

Quick Vanilla Frosting:

  • 8 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
  • 5-6 cups of confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 cup milk (more or less depending on desired texture)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • a pinch of salt

Whip the butter in a stand mixer using the paddle attachment. Slowly add confectioners’ sugar, one cup at a time, while the mixer is on low. Add milk a few splashes at time until desired consistency is achieved. Add vanilla and salt and mix until fully incorporated.



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