Originally Posted by ChefJune
If you want your cake to be light and tender, there is no substitute for folding in those beaten egg whites at the end!
This recipe is the absolute best white cake I have ever eaten or made. A friend gave me this recipe SO many years ago, and I have shared it and shared it and shared it. It's the basis for the Coconut Lemon Layer Cake that's in my book.
makes one 9-inch 2-layer cake
for the cake:
1/4 pound (4 ounces / 8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cup pure cane granulated sugar
1 teaspoon lemon extract
2 1/4 cups cake flour, sifted twice
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 1/3 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4 extra large egg whites, beaten with 1/4 cup sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour two 9-inch round cake pans. Cream butter and one cup of the sugar until light and fluffy. Add lemon extract.
2. Mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Add to the butter/sugar mixture alternately with the buttermilk. Add vanilla.
3. Whip the egg whites until foamy, then add the additional 1/4 cup sugar and whip until fluffy, but not dry. Stir one-third of the egg whites into the batter to lighten it, then gently but thoroughly fold in the remaining whites.
4. Pour into the prepared pans and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until cake tester comes out clean. Allow cake layers to cool in their pans for 10 minutes, then remove them and allow cooling to complete on cake racks.
I just made this cake for a friend's birthday yesterday and it was absolutely fantastic! It was very light and tender, not overly moist, but not at all dry either! It has a texture similar to a cake mix, but even better in my opinion. I was thinking that with only one stick of butter that it may be slightly dry, but that wasn't a problem at all.
I made the recipe exactly as directed, no changes. At first I was thinking that it should have risen more, but the whipped egg whites gave it almost all of the volume that it needed, PERFECT!
The lemon flavor was very subtle, and blended well with the vanilla, creating a nice flavor, so much nicer than many very bland white cakes that I've made. I can see using other flavorings in it as well.