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August 2017

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Really Good Vanilla Cake

The Cuteness wanted a vanilla cake in the shape of a bunny for her birthday.
Bunny Cake

I don't generally go for vanilla cakes but this one tasted particularly good. So I want to record the recipe so I can do it again.

Vanilla Cake

4 eggs, separated
1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar
1/4 cup sugar (plain granulated)
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar (plain granulated)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 2/3 cups flour
1 cup milk

Preheat the oven to 350F
Grease and line two 9 inch cake pans.
Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites.
Add the Cream of Tartar to the whites and beat them to soft peaks. Gradually beat in the 1/4 cup of sugar. Then set aside.
In another bowl cream the butter with the 1 1/2 cup sugar. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time. Beat in the vanilla, baking powder, and salt.
Beat in the flour and milk in three parts, alternating flour and milk.
Fold in half the beaten egg whites. Then fold in the rest.
Divide the batter between the two pans and bake for 25-35 minutes.

I got this recipe from "The Joy of Cooking" 2006 edition. They call it a Four Egg Yellow Cake. It was amazingly white even though I used very yellow organic eggs.
I was just surprised with how good this cake tasted. A lot of vanilla cakes are just not good. But this was delicious.

I also made Hot Cross Buns.
Hot Crossed Buns
I sort of winged that recipe.
I started out with 1 pkg of yeast and 1/2 cup of warm water and let that sit to proof. Then I added 1/2 cup of sugar and 1 tsp salt.
Then I melted 1 stick of butter in 1 1/2 cups of milk, in the microwave.
I added about 3 cups flour to the yeast sponge, alternating with the milk and butter mixture. I also mixed in 4 eggs. When the dough was well kneaded I put it in the oven (a warm draft free box) for 1 hour to proof. Until it had just doubled in size. I was a bit worried that the yeast didn't seem as active as it usually is with my leaner doughs. But it did rise.
Then I cut the dough into 15 pieces and formed buns. I put them in a greased 9x13 pan. and put them back in the oven for their second rise. After half an hour they had only risen a little bit but I was in a hurry so I pre heated the oven to 350F and baked them for 30 min. They rose beautifully!

I made the crosses with lemon sugar glaze. But Song suggested that I could have nipped crosses into the tops before I baked them.

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