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Recipe

Classic Vanilla Layer Cake with Vanilla Mascarpone Frosting & Raspberries

Scott Phillips

Yield: Yields one 9-inch cake.

Servings: 12

Ingredients

For the cake layers:

  • 1/2 lb. (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature; more for the pan
  • All-purpose flour for the pan
  • 12 oz. (3 cups) cake flour
  • 1 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp. table salt
  • 1-3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • Seeds scraped from 3/4 vanilla bean, or 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 6 large egg whites, at room temperature

For the frosting:

  • 1 lb. mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • Seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean, or 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch table salt
  • 2 pints raspberries, rinsed and patted dry

Nutritional Information

      Nutritional Sample Size based on twelve servings
      Calories (kcal) : 750
      Fat Calories (kcal): 440
      Fat (g): 49
      Saturated Fat (g): 29
      Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3
      Monounsaturated Fat (g): 13
      Cholesterol (mg): 145
      Sodium (mg): 420
      Carbohydrates (g): 73
      Fiber (g): 3
      Protein (g): 9

Preparation

Make the cake:

  • Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Grease the bottom and sides of two 9-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms with parchment and lightly flour the sides of the pans, tapping out any excess.
  • Sift the cake flour, baking powder, and salt onto a paper plate or into a medium bowl. In a large bowl, beat the butter with a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or a hand-held electric mixer) on medium speed until smooth, 1 min. Add 1-1/2 cups of the sugar and the vanilla bean seeds or extract. Continue beating until well combined and fluffy, 2 min. Stop to scrape the bowl as needed. Oon low speed, add the one-third of the dry ingredients at a time, alternating with 1/2 cup of the milk at a time, beginning and ending with the flour. After the last addition, scrape the bowl and mix for about 30 seconds to mix the batter fully.
  • In a medium bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer (a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or a hand-held) on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Increase the speed to high and gradually add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar. Continue beating until the whites form medium-firm peaks. Using a rubber spatula, scoop up about one-quarter of the whites and stir them gently into the cake batter to lighten it. Gently fold in the remaining whites until just blended.
  • Scrape the batter evenly into the prepared pans. Bake until the tops are light brown and a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, about 30 min. Set the pans on a rack and let cool for about 15 min. Run a  knife between the cake and the pan to loosen each cake. Invert the layers onto a rack, lift off the pans and peel away the parchment. Let cool completely.

Make the frosting:

  • In a medium bowl, combine the mascarpone, cream, sugar, vanilla seeds or extract, and salt. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed until almost smooth, 30 to 60 seconds. Increase the speed to medium high and beat until the mixture is thick and holds firm peaks, another 30 to 60 seconds. Don’t overbeat or the frosting will look grainy.

Assemble the cake:

  • Using your hands, gently brush away any excess crumbs from the layers. Set one cake layer, top side down, on a flat serving plate. To protect the plate from smears, slide small strips of foil or parchment under the bottom of the cake to cover the plate. Using a metal spatula or the back edge of a table knife, spread about 2 cups of the frosting evenly over the layer. Arrange about half the berries in a single layer on the frosting but leave a half-inch ring of space around the edge of the cake uncovered. Place the second cake layer, top side down, on top of the frosting. Be sure the sides are aligned and then press gently on the layer. Apply a very thin layer of frosting over the entire cake to seal in any stray crumbs. Chill in the refrigerator for 5 min. Spread the remaining frosting over the top and sides of the cake, leaving lots of swirls and peaks on the top. Garnish the top with remaining berries. Carefully remove the foil or parchment strips from under the cake. Refrigerate the cake for 4 hours or up to two days. To keep the fruit looking fresh, cover the cake loosely with plastic after it has chilled for 1 hour.


    Arrange half of the berries on the frosting; use any less-than-perfect berries for this layer.

Reviews

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Reviews

  • mojo_g | 05/15/2016

    I loved the icing (although I couldn't get the lumps out) but a little disappointed with the cake - a bit dry but good flavour.

  • NilooTheBaker | 02/06/2016

    I made this cake recently and it was exactly the way I expected it to be. So moist and delicious.I just had one question. I'm wondering which one makes the best out of this recipe? Milk, buttermilk or sourcream? Has anyone tried any of the other two?

  • ingrid99 | 03/15/2015

    Didn't have a chance to make the icing for this recipe, but the cake is delicious! Be careful not to over bake! If I had cooked it any longer, it would have been dry. Otherwise the cake has a lovely fine crumb and is soft like a cloud! Yum!

  • bellaginger | 03/10/2015

    This was fun to make & it looked just like the picture. The frosting was yummy! My cake wasn't 100% moist so not sure what I did wrong. I did make it the day before & kept in fridge so next time I may only chill it for a short time. So pretty when you slice it! Next time I may add a bit of pured raspberries to the whole berries between the layers. Will make again.

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