Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful and beautiful mothers out there! I hope you are all staying safe and healthy and sharing a happy celebration with your families!
Though we should always remember to be appreciative of our mothers every day, it’s nice to take some time to think about all the love and support that our mothers or mother figures have given us through the good times and the bad.
I unfortunately don’t currently live with my mom, so I won’t be able to celebrate Mother’s Day with her in person in the interest of social distancing, but we will be celebrating by contactless delivery of some Mother’s Day goodies!
This year I’ve prepared a special strawberry matcha layer cake just for my mom, inspired by this recipe. The recipe with my adjustments can be found below.
The pink from the strawberry is such an amazing and adorable color and I was so excited to make this cake from scratch using fresh strawberries! I also love the way strawberry and matcha taste together, so a matcha whipped cream was a must-do for me!
To start off, I have never had and probably will never have cake flour in my pantry, so I often opt for the all-purpose flour/cornstarch substitution. The substitution calls for 2 tbsp of cornstarch for every 1 cup of flour (with 2 tbsp of flour removed).
For the strawberry puree, I decided to use fresh strawberries instead of frozen strawberries and one thing I was weary of was the liquid content of the strawberry puree. So I actually made double what the recipe called for then reduced it over the stove on low to medium heat until I had ¾ cup of strawberry puree that was nice and thick instead of runny.
I was unable to find strawberry extract at any of my local grocery stores, but I was able to get a bottle of strawberry oil at my specialty baking supplies store which worked great and smelled so sweet and yummy!
The Baking Process
With just a couple drops of magenta food coloring, this cake batter was transformed into this beautiful pink color. I think the color of the batter would have been just as cute if I had foregone the food coloring, but it probably would have been a lighter pink.
Now for the matcha whipped cream!
I typically find that adding matcha to my desserts requires a lot of matcha, otherwise the the color is just not very vibrant, but I only added around 1 1/2 teaspoons of matcha powder to my whipped cream and it came out so green! Not sure if it’s the freshness of the matcha powder or if it’s the quality, but I got the matcha powder I used from Costco, so no complaints here! I topped this layer off with some thinly sliced strawberries before laying on the top layer.
Here’s the finished piece!
How did it taste?
The strawberry cake layers were a bit denser than I was hoping, but I’m still trying to figure out how to make my cake layers light and fluffy. In terms of the flavor, the strawberries I bought were on the sour side, but I think the sugar and strawberry extract helped to balance it out, so it was a bit tart but overall sweet and verry strawberry! I also liked the added texture of the strawberry seeds with each bite since I decided to leave the seeds in my puree instead of straining them out. The earthy matcha also helped balance out the tart and sweet strawberry, which again is a favorite flavor combination of mine (thanks Boba Guys!)
I still need to work on getting my cake more fluffy and airy, but overall this cake was definitely a success for me!
How are you celebrating Mother’s Day this year?
ºoº 2 eggs (room temperature)
ºoº 3/4 cups strawberry puree
ºoº 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
ºoº 1 tsp strawberry extract
ºoº 2 to 3 drops pink food coloring (I used gel)
ºoº 1 1/2 cups - 3 tbsp flour
ºoº 3 tbsp cornstarch
ºoº 3/4 cups granulated sugar
ºoº 1/2 tbsp + 1/4 tsp baking powder
ºoº 1/2 tsp salt
ºoº 1/8 cup vegetable oil
ºoº 1/2 stick unsalted butter (room temperature)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Grease and flour two 6 x 2 inch round pans
Mix eggs, strawberry puree, vanilla extract, strawberry extract, pink food coloring together in a bowl
In a separate bowl, whisk cake flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt
Mix in pieces of butter (a few at a time) and oil with your mixer on low to medium speed until crumbs form (don’t forget to periodically scrape the bowl!)
Mix in half of the wet ingredients on low speed then increase the mixer speed to medium until batter is thick and fluffy (~1 ½ minutes)
Scrape the bowl then add the rest of the wet ingredients in batches, mixing for ~20 seconds per batch
Pour the batter into the cake pans
Bake for 25-35 minutes. Check the cake by inserting a toothpick in the center and making sure it comes out clean
Allow the cake to cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then take them out and place them on a cooling rack until they’re cool enough to assemble
Matcha Whipped Cream
ºoº ½ cup heavy whipping cream
ºoº 1 tbsp granulated sugar
ºoº 1 ½ tsp matcha powder
Before starting your whipped cream, chill your mixing bowl. I put mine in the freezer around 15-20 minutes before I need it, but chilling it for longer doesn’t hurt either!
With your chilled mixing bowl, beat the heavy whipping cream with your mixer on high until soft peaks start to form
Add in the sugar and matcha powder until the cream thickens and forms stiff peaks
ºoº Whipping the cream for too long can cause the whipped cream to become a bit
grainy. You can try adding just a splash more of cream to make it a bit more smooth