Reserve the egg whites left
over from the cake for the frosting. If you don’t have buttermilk,
substitute plain yogurt or sour cream (not fat-free).
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pans
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs plus 3 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup low-fat buttermilk
Whipped Frosting (see below)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two round 8-inch cake
pans, tapping out excess flour. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking
powder, baking soda and salt.
In a large bowl, using an electric
mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. With mixer on low
heat, beat in eggs and yolks, one at a time. Beat in vanilla.
Alternately beat in flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending
with flour mixture; mix just until combined.
between pans; smooth tops. Bake until cakes pull away from sides of
pans, about 32 minutes to 35 minutes. Let cool in pans 10 minutes. Run
a knife around edges of pans and invert cakes onto a wire rack. Let
Place one cake, bottom side up, on a cake stand.
Tuck strips of parchment paper underneath. Using an offset-spatula or
table knife, spread top with Whipped Frosting. Top with remaining cake;
frost top, then sides. (Store unfrosted cakes at room temperature up to
1 day. Once frosted, serve within a few hours.)
419 calories; 19 g fat (11 g saturated fat; 41 percent calories from
fat); 57 g carbohydrates; 133 mg cholesterol; 319 mg sodium; 6 g
protein; 1 g fiber.
Reduce flour to 2 cups and add 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder. Top frosted cake with shaved dark chocolate.
Add 1 tablespoon lemon zest to flour mixture. Omit vanilla extract and beat in 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice with buttermilk.
cakes are baking, bring 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water to a boil in a
saucepan. Add 1 thinly sliced and seeded lemon and simmer 25 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer lemon slices to a waxed-paper-lined
plate. Stir 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice into syrup. Using a toothpick,
poke holes in warm cakes on rack. Brush with lemon syrup.
frosting, substitute 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice for vanilla
extract. Frost cooled cakes and top with candied lemon slices.
In a heat-proof bowl, set over (not in) a saucepan of simmering water,
combine 3 large egg whites, 3/4 cup sugar, a pinch salt and 1/3 cup
water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sugar has
dissolved (or mixture registers 150 degrees on an instant-read
thermometer), about 2 minutes to 3 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl.
Using an electric mixer, beat on medium-high heat until glossy, stiff
peaks form (do not overbeat), about 3 minutes; reduce speed to low, add
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract and beat just until combined. Makes 5
cups. Use immediately.
15 minutes to make
35 minutes to bake
5 minutes to frost