So instead I’ll just say, Y’ALL. Bethcakes is a year old!!
I’ve been wanting to make this Bourbon Vanilla Bean Cake for awhile, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity to step back from all the fruity drinks and patriotic things and finally make it.
I would say the one thing that has improved the most over the past year is my photography. A lot. But I think it’s also the thing I struggle with the most. And styling. I don’t have a lot of space for props right now, which is probably better for my wallet anyway. 😉 My writing and recipe development have definitely improved too, but photography is like an on-going thing. When I look over a blog post after publishing, I usually find myself thinking, “Wellll, they’re okay.” Haha. Honestly, most of my photos look a little gray to me. I just feel like I’m not quite there yet.
I realize this is something most food bloggers deal with, and I know that I’m really hard on myself. And I compare myself and my blog to other people and their blogs, which is probably the biggest problem. Really, I know I need to practice more. Play with my camera more. Maybe actually read the manual and watch the dvd that came in the box. These things just take time. Which I haven’t really had a lot of recently, and that’s probably why I feel a little frustrated with it at the moment.
BUT. There has been improvement and that’s what matters. And thank you to the wonderful people who leave comments complimenting my photos because that’s really encouraging and reassuring. 🙂 ♥
This maybe the fluffiest cake I’ve ever made. When it comes to white and yellow cakes, I haven’t found my “perfect” recipe yet. Which is weird because they’re so basic. Whenever I make them from scratch or try to develop my own recipe, they’re always really dense, dry, and not very tasty. There are tons of “The Best White Cake” recipes out there that I still need to try, though.
So I was really excited when this vanilla bean cake turned out the way it did. Fluffy, moist, very vanilla-y. I kind of want to put vanilla bean seeds and bourbon in everything now. Don’t be surprised if you see it on the blog again soon!
Most of the inspiration for this cake came from Sweetapolita. She is totally one of my cake heroes. Incredible recipes and flavor combinations, and so perfectly decorated. Like, gah. The prettiest things!
It started with a Southern Living recipe, but it didn’t look like it would make enough to cover a three layer cake. And really, I almost always double the amount of frosting a recipe calls for because somehow I always always always run out of it. But this should cover the filling between the layers, the outside of the cake, and you should have some leftover to pipe around the edges.
Oh, also, the cake layers are brushed with more bourbon before they are frosted. Do with that what you will.
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1 vanilla bean, scraped
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 cup bourbon
- 1 1/2 cups (2 1/2 sticks) butter, softened
- 1 vanilla bean, scraped
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp whipping cream
- 2 tbsp bourbon
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and spray three 8 inch cake pans with nonstick spray and line them with parchment paper.
- In one bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Carefully stir together.
- In a large bowl with a hand-held electric mixer, beat butter on medium high speed until smooth and creamy. Add vanilla bean seeds and mix until they're evenly distributed throughout the butter.
- Next, add the sugar and mix until completely incorporated and fluffy.
- Then add the eggs whites and mix until just combined.
- Add half of the flour mixture and half of the milk to the butter/sugar mixture. Mix on medium speed until just combined. Repeat with the second half of the flour and milk, and mix until completely combined.
- Transfer cake batter to the prepared pans, and bake for 19-21 minutes, or until slightly browned on top and a toothpick inserted into the center of each cake layer comes out clean.
- Let cake layers cool for 10 minutes in the pans, then let them cool completely on a wire rack.
- Once cake layers are cool, brush 1/4 cup bourbon over the top of each layer.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix butter on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy. Add vanilla bean seeds and mix until they're evenly spread throughout.
- Add the salt, whipping cream, and bourbon. Mix until combined.
- Then add the powdered sugar one cup at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix on medium speed for another minute.
- Spread frosting over cake layers, and over the cake. If you have some leftover frosting, you can use it to pipe decorations around the cake.
All photos belong to bethcakes. Please do not use them without permission or credit. Thanks!