Strawberry Layer Cake - Hands down, the best fresh strawberry cake with moist crumb and slightly sweet cake layers between strawberry buttercream frosting. Everyone raves how delicious this cake is year round. Serve strawberry cake as a dessert during summer or as a birthday cake!
1cupshortening (can be substituted with 1 cup unsalted butter)
6tablespoonsunsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2cupssour cream
3/4cupstrawberry puree (you'll make this in the 1st step of the recipe)
1 1/2teaspoonsvanilla extract
1 1/2teaspoonsbutter flavoring ( or more vanilla extract, if desired)
For the Strawberry Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting
18tablespoonsunsalted butter (that's 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
5cupspowdered confectioners' sugar
2tablespoonsstrawberry puree *see notes for alternative
12ouncescream cheese, soft
1cupshortening (can be substituted with equal amounts of butter)
1teaspoonbutter flavoring or almond extract
For the Garnished Top
semi-sweet chocolate bar, grated
To make the strawberry puree for this recipe, remove strawberry tops then slice and add to a blender. Blend until pureed. Pour liquid into medium saucepan and cook over low heat for 20-25 minutes. Pour puree into liquid measuring cup and fill to 3/4 cup. Place in refrigerator until ready to add to cake. Save remaining strawberry puree concentration for frosting.2. To make the cake, Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray 4 8-inch round cake pans with cooking spray. Cut parchment paper circles to cover bottom of cake pans then spray again with cooking spray. If using only 2 cake rounds bake cakes 2 at a time then bake the 2 remaining cakes.3. In a bowl fit with paddle attachment, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.4. With the mixer on low, slowly beat in chunks of shortening and butter. Turn mixer to medium and beat until mixture has small crumbs or is at least combined well. 5. In a medium bowl, whisk together honey, sour cream, strawberry puree, eggs, vanilla extract, almond extract, and butter extract flavoring.6. With the mixer on low, slowly pour mixture into dry ingredients. Turn mixer to medium and beat until incorporated; about 1 minute. Whip down sides of bowl with a spatula and stir to mix. If you'd like a deeper pink tone to the cake, red or pink food coloring can be added to the cake batter.7. Evenly pour cake batter into the 4 prepared cake pans. I did about 2 1/3 cups cake batter to each baking pan. Spread evenly with a spatula and tap cake pans on counter top to remove air bubbles. Bake in oven 40-50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.8. Allow cakes to cool then remove from cake pans and place on cooling rack. Level cake tops with a long serrated knife; removing dome tops. Knife should be as parallel as possible. For the Strawberry Buttercream Frosting1. Cream butter, and powdered confectioners' sugar 1 cup at a time until light and fluffy. Then add the salt, almond or butter extract.2. Once smooth, beat in chunks of cream cheese and shortening. Beat in strawberry puree. Frosting should have a pink hue but red food coloring can be added to frosting to achieve deeper pink hue.Cake AssemblyPlace cake on 10-inch cake board. This will make it easier to chill in the refrigerator.Place 1/3 cup frosting between each cake layer, spreading frosting with evenly with a spatula. Spread remaining frosting over entire cake; covering top and sides. Use an offset spatula to evenly spread frosting around. Chill cake in refrigerator overnight. To garnish, pipe 8 whipped cream dollops on top. Garnish center of cake with grated chocolate. Refrigerate until 45 minutes before serving.
*if more strawberry puree is needed, use strawberry preservatives.