Who doesn't love strawberry short cake? Cold, creamy, sweet and light ....the perfect summer dessert.....who am I kidding? I would eat this any time of year!
Strawberry Short Cake
4 cups fresh strawberries, cleaned and stems removed
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Combine all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl and toss to thoroughly coat strawberries. Let sit at room temperature at least 20 minutes before using. Strain berries, reserve syrup and set aside.
2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
6 large eggs, separated
1 1/2 cups sugar
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two (8-inch) cake pans. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together into a mixing bowl; set aside. Mix together vegetable oil, water, lemon zest, vanilla, egg yolks, and 1 and 1/4 cups of the sugar. Mix for about 5-7 minutes until mixture is light and airy. Turn off the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl; add dry ingredients and whip until smooth, about 1 minute more.
In a clean bowl, whip egg whites to medium peaks. Add remaining 1/4 cup sugar and continue whipping until stiff peaks form, about 1 minute more. Using a rubber spatula, fold 1/4 of the egg whites into the cake batter until evenly incorporated; gently fold in remaining egg whites until just combined.
Divide batter between prepared cake pans. Bake until surface of cakes springs back when pressed and a toothpick or cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 30 to 35 minutes. Remove cakes from the oven, and let cool 15 minutes. Run a knife around the perimeter of each, and turn them out onto wire racks to cool completely.
1 cup mascarpone cheese
1 cup heavy cream
Combine mascarpone cheese and heavy cream in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and whip until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
3 cups heavy cream
Place the cleaned bowl of the stand mixer and the whip attachment in the freezer for 10 minutes. Combine vanilla extract, sugar, and heavy cream in the chilled bowl and whip at medium speed until medium peaks form, about 2 minutes.
Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least one hour.
Using a long serrated knife, trim the tops of the cakes as necessary so they are level. Place cake rounds on a clean, dry surface and, using a pastry brush, brush 1/2 of the reserved strawberry syrup on the cut side of the first cake round; repeat on the cut side of the second cake round.
Evenly spread 1/2 of the filling over the cut side of the bottom cake layer. Arrange strawberries standing upright, stem end down, over the filling layer and trim as necessary to create an even layer. Cover berries with the remaining filling, being sure to fill in any empty space.
Place second cake layer over filling and strawberries, cut side down, pressing gently to secure it. Using an offset spatula or a long, thin spatula, spread 3/4 cup of the frosting in a thin layer over the top and sides of the cake. Return remaining frosting and cake to the refrigerator until frosting on cake is set, about 15 minutes.
Spread the remaining frosting all over the top and sides of the cake, saving some of the frosting to add to a piping bag if you choose to decorate. Let sit in the refrigerator at least 15 minutes before serving.
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