My Best Homemade Birthday Cake Ever: Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

The cake recipe that follows is one that will ensure a light, fluffy, and moist cake with an ever so easy to make frosting that is both easy to make, cheap, tasty, and can be made in minutes. 

Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Cake flour recipe

For each cup of cake flour you need, use this substitution if you only have all purpose flour at home.  Take one cup of all purpose flour and take out two tablespoons.  Add two tablespoons of corn starch.  Wasn't that easy.  Now sift it together very well so that it does its job.  The corn starch will make the flour retain more moisture.  Because the all purpose flour has TOO MUCH protein to become fluffy and airy, the corn starch helps reduce that protein imbalance to make the cake less dense.  I normally would not advocate to reduce protein in any foods, except we are talking dessert, not health food. 

Evaporated Milk Recipe

For every cup needed of evaporated milk, simmer on very low heat 2 cups milk until it becomes 1 cup.  Cool in ice water (No.  Don't pour the milk into the ice water. Keep it separate.  I use my measuring cup in an ice slurry bowl.) Cool until room temperature.  Do not scald the milk.  This can take an hour, so do this in advance.

Vanilla Cake (9 inch double layer round)


1 1/2 cup cake flour
1 1/4 all purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt (delete if using salted butter)
1 cup butter at room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs at room temperature
4 teaspoons vanilla extract (DO NOT USE IMITATION VANILLA)
1 cup undiluted evaporated milk. 
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Step one. 

Mix all powder ingredients together well and set aside (cake flour, all purpose flour, baking powder, and salt).

Step two.

Cream together the eggs, room temperature butter, sugar, and vanilla extract until smooth and velvety.  A blender speed of 2 is sufficient.  Add each ingredient while the beaters are working.  Make sure you do not get hands or tools caught in the blades. 

Step three.

Gently fold the wet ingredients and dry ingredients into the final mixing bowl, starting with a portion of dry and ending with dry.  The batter will stiffen a little so alternately pour in some of the evaporated milk.  The step should go dry mix, batter, milk, dry mix, batter, milk, dry mix. This ensures a good smooth texture and all the ingredients blend well.   

Step four.

Pour blended batter into two well greased and floured round cake pans. 
Step five.
Bake at 325 degrees for 35 - 40  minutes. As this cake will dry out fast at the end, pull the cake out to test with a toothpick a few minutes before the full time.  If it comes out clean, the cake is done. 

Step 6.

Let cool and release from the spring form round cake pans and place on cooling rack.  Frankly, I leave them on the base of the  cake pans and put them on a couple of chop sticks to get air flow underneath.  In 20 minutes, they should be cool enough to begin frosting the first layer.  When the first layer is frosted on top, place the second cake sheet on top of the first.  Be sure to use a long blade to release the cake from the cake pan. Position the cake above the target and pull the pan away from the cake allowing the cake to gently fall to the first layer.  Continue frosting the whole top and then side.     

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

1 cup room temperature butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 cups warm melted chocolate chips. 

Step one.

Beat butter in blender until smooth, then add powdered sugar until mixture is fluffy.  Not more than about two minutes. 

Step two.

Melt chocolate chips in microwave for 20 second jumps and stir.  Do not over melt or under melt.  Since each microwave is different, later time may be less.  When the chocolate stirs smoothly, add to the blender and mix at medium speed until fluffy.  That is it.  It is ready to spread on the cake.  It will stay soft at room temperature so this frosting has exceptional quality. 
Enjoy this traditional American cake! 
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