Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Dulce de Leche Cake



One word. Yum!


I got a call from a friend, the day before Labor Day that went something like this:


Friend: "Want to come over tomorrow for a BBQ?"
Me: "Sure!!"
Friend: "Can you bring dessert?"
Me: "Sure...should have known that was coming!"


So I'd been drooling over a Dulce de Leche cake recipe on one of my new favorite blogs, Spork or Foon, and decided this would be the perfect opportunity to make it. I love trying out big fancy cake recipes on my friends! They loved it..I loved it..Ben loved it so much it ended up on our kitchen floor the day after the BBQ. I was devestated! I'd do just about anything for another bite of that cake..it was the perfect combination of fluffy white cake, creamy dulce de leche filling, and rich caramel buttercream icing.


I used the recipe straight from Spork or Foon, but it was adapted it from several different sources. I'll include those links with each component of the recipe.


Dulce de Leche Cake with Caramel Buttercream Frosting
from SporkorFoon


White Layer Cake adapted from Cook's Illustrated





2 1/4 cups cake flour
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon table salt
1 cup milk (original calls for whole, I used 2%)
3/4 cup egg whites (6 large or 8 medium)
1 teaspoon vanilla
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened but still cool


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare (2) 9 inch pans, covering the bottom of each pan with a circle of parchment paper and spraying with nonstick spray. Mix dry ingredients in large bowl with a wire whisk, and set aside. Pour milk, egg whites and vanilla into a smaller bowl and whisk until combined. Add butter to dry ingredients, and mix with electric mixer on medium speed until mixture resembles crumbs. Add all but 1/4 cup of milk mixture, and beat on high speed with hand mixer (medium if you're a bigshot with a stand mixer) for 1 1/2 minutes. Scrape down sides of the bowl, add the remaining milk, and beat for an additional 30 seconds.

Pour batter into pans, filling 2/3 of the way full. Bake cakes at 350 degrees for 23-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven, and cool in pans on wire racks for 20 minutes. Turn layers out of pans onto a baking sheet lined with plastic wrap, and place in freezer for 30 minutes.

Remove from freezer, and wrap each cake in 3 layers of plastic wrap, and place back in freezer until ready to use.


Dulce de Leche Filling from The Perfect Pantry

1 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk

Pour contents of can into large glass bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Turn back a little of the plastic wrap on one side of the bowl to vent excess steam. 

Microwave on 50% power for 2 minutes, remove from microwave and stir with wire whisk. Recover with plastic wrap, and microwave for an additional 2 minutes on 50% power. Stir again, and recover.

In 2 1/2 minute intervals, continue microwaving for 7 1/2-10 minutes. Remove after each 2 1/2 minute interval and stir well. Mixture will bubble up and become thicker and more caramel colored with each stirring. 

The original recipe calls for using the full 10 minutes. I did that the first time around, and my milk was cooked too much. The second time around, I stopped at 7 1/2 minutes and had a perfect Dulce de Leche. Since microwaves vary, stop when you feel the consistency and color are right!

The finished product:
Perfect, and delicious! I could eat this straight out of the bowl!

Caramel Buttercream Frosting from Paula Deen via the Food Network

Do not make this frosting until you are ready to use it immediately. It dries very quickly! 

1 stick butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar (original recipe calls for dark, I used light)
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
16 ounces powdered sugar

Melt butter in small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add brown sugar and cream. Continue cooking until sugar is melted, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Pour into large mixing bowl. Add powdered sugar in small batches while mixing on low speed with electric mixer. Mix until smooth. If frosting is too thick, add 1 tablespoon heavy cream to thin. 

Cake Assembly:

Remove first layer from freezer, unwrap, and place on cake board. Level with serrated knife if necessary. Spread a thick layer of Dulce de Leche filling on top of this layer.



Top with second cake layer, and press down. If you have filling squishing out between the layers, run an offset spatula around the edge to smooth. Apply a thin layer of Caramel Buttercream Frosting as a crumb coat, and place the cake in the fridge for 15 minutes to set. This layer of frosting doesn't have to be perfect, or even pretty...It's just there to trap any loose crumbs and keep them from getting stuck in your final layer of frosting!




Set aside frosting for piping, if desired. Use the remaining Caramel Buttercream to frost the top and sides of the cake. Since this frosting dries so quickly, I found it useful to use a heated offset spatula to smooth out the frosting. Run your spatula under hot water, dry, and smooth. Repeat until cake is smooth and pretty! Pipe decorations on top and around the bottom of cake, if desired. I topped mine with a drizzle of caramel, piped chocolate hearts, and a drizzle of melted chocolate. Do whatever makes you happy!



All of the components of this cake are wonderful! Together, they make my favorite cake to date! I've also used the white cake in a few other recipes as well- its light and moist and perfect with any combination of fillings and frostings.

Enjoy, and let me know what you think!!

2 comments:

  1. Beautiful cake. Sounds amazing!

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  2. oh my word that cake looks delish!!! Thanks for sharing this recipe! I can't wait until I'm back in a kitchen that has a full size oven that actually works!

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