How to improve on light, fluffy white cake? Top it with maple syrup-sweetened marshmallow-y frosting.
For birthdays and holidays, it's easy to overcomplicate the cake. But spending all day on a multi-tiered buttercream-coated affair doesn't mean it's going to taste any more delicious than a simple fluffy white cake made with just as much care in a whole lot less time.
Enter this white cake, a recipe passed down from the author's grandmother, which calls for nothing more than standard baking ingredients (milk, sugar, shortening, flour, eggs, vanilla) and the simplest three-ingredient frosting.
Making the cake is a breeze: Just cream your sugar and shortening, add your wet ingredients, fold in the dry ingredients, and bake. Top with your maple-y, marshmallow-like frosting, which is made by whipping hot maple syrup into stiff egg whites until thick and glossy.
In the summertime, we'd suggest serving this with fresh berries. In the winter? A sprinkling of candied pecans over top surely couldn't hurt.
Makes one 9x13-inch cake
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cups whole milk
2 cups flour
Maple Syrup Frosting
1 cup maple syrup
2 eggs, whites only
1 pinch salt
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13-inch cake pan.
2. Using a standing mixer, cream together the sugar and shortening. Add in eggs and vanilla and continue mixing until combined.
3. In a separate bowl mix together the salt, baking powder and flour. Add the dry ingredients into the sugar/egg mixture alternating with the milk until the flour is completely incorporated.
4. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes.
5. To make the frosting, beat two egg whites to stiff peaks and set aside. In a sauce pan, bring maple syrup to a boil. Add a pinch of salt (I like to use flaky sea salt). Add hot syrup in a slow steady stream to the beaten egg whites continuing to whisk the whites while adding.
6. Frost cooled cake.
Photo by James Ransom
This article originally appeared on Food52.com: Grandma's White Cake with Maple Syrup Frosting