Strawberry birthday cake is a classic dessert that is both delicious and visually appealing. The delicate sweetness of strawberries pairs perfectly with the light and fluffy texture of the cake, making it the perfect treat for all occasions.
In this article, we will explore the history of strawberry birthday cake, as well as provide a complete recipe for making your own. We will also discuss some tips and tricks for creating a truly stunning cake.
History of Strawberry Birthday Cake
The exact origins of strawberry birthday cake are unknown, but it is believed to have originated in Europe. Strawberries have been cultivated for centuries, and they were often used in desserts and other confections due to their natural light sweetness.
The first known recipe for strawberry cake appeared in a cookbook published in England in the early 1800s. The recipe called for layering slices of strawberries between layers of sponge cake, and it was frosted with a simple whipped cream frosting.
Strawberry birthday cake quickly became popular throughout Europe and the United States. In the early 1900s, it became a common tradition to serve strawberry cake at birthday parties.
Strawberry Birthday Cake Recipe
Introduction to Ingredients:
All-Purpose Flour (2 cups):
Start your baking adventure with the heart of the cake – all-purpose flour. This versatile ingredient provides structure to your cake, giving it the perfect texture. Its balanced composition ensures that your cake rises beautifully and maintains a soft, moist crumb.
Baking Powder (1 1/2 teaspoons) and Baking Soda (1/2 teaspoon):
The dynamic duo of baking powder and baking soda acts as the leavening agents in your cake. Baking powder helps with the initial rise, while baking soda contributes to browning and tenderness. Together, they create a harmonious lift, resulting in a light and fluffy texture.
Salt (1/4 teaspoon):
A pinch of salt may seem small, but it plays a crucial role in enhancing the overall flavor of the cake. It balances the sweetness, intensifies the other flavors, and ensures that every bite is a perfect symphony of taste.
Unsalted Butter (1 cup – 2 sticks):
Butter, the backbone of richness and flavor in the cake, is your key to a moist and delectable dessert. Creaming it with sugar creates a light and airy base, contributing to the cake’s delightful melt-in-the-mouth quality.
Granulated Sugar (1 3/4 cups):
The sweetness of granulated sugar not only satisfies your sweet tooth but also aids in the creaming process with butter. It caramelizes during baking, adding a golden hue and enhancing the overall taste and texture.
Eggs (3 large):
Eggs bring structure, stability, and richness to your cake. Added one at a time and thoroughly mixed into the batter, they provide moisture and contribute to the cake’s structure, ensuring a delightful consistency.
Vanilla Extract (1 teaspoon):
Vanilla extract is the aromatic essence that elevates the flavor profile of your cake. Its warm and sweet notes add depth, complementing the other ingredients and creating a well-rounded taste experience.
Milk (1 cup):
Milk is the liquid component that adds moisture and tenderness to the cake. Alternating with the dry ingredients during mixing ensures an even distribution, resulting in a velvety and delightful crumb.
Reduced Strawberry Puree (1/2 cup):
Introducing a burst of fruity goodness, the reduced strawberry puree not only adds vibrant color but infuses your cake with the natural sweetness and tartness of fresh strawberries. A delightful twist that takes your cake to the next level.
For the Frosting:
Unsalted Butter (1 cup – 2 sticks), Powdered Sugar (3 cups), Freeze-Dried Strawberry Powder (1/4 cup), Milk (1/4 cup):
Your frosting is a luscious blend of buttery richness, sweet powdered sugar, and the unique essence of freeze-dried strawberry powder. This heavenly combination creates a smooth, flavorful topping that beautifully complements the strawberry-infused cake.
Follow these steps to orchestrate the symphony of flavors – from preparing the reduced strawberry puree to assembling the layers with the velvety frosting, creating a masterpiece that is both visually stunning and irresistibly delicious.
Strawberry Birthday Cake Recipe
- 454 g 1 pound fresh strawberries, rinsed and hulled
- 285 g 2 1/2 cups cake flour, spooned and leveled
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 170 g 3/4 cup or 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 350 g 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
- 5 large egg whites at room temperature
- 75 g 1/3 cup sour cream or plain yogurt, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 120 ml 1/2 cup whole milk, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup reduced strawberry puree from the Strawberry Puree section
- Optional: 1-2 drops red or pink food coloring
Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
- 25 g 1 cup freeze-dried strawberries
- 226 g 8 ounces full-fat brick cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 113 g 1/2 cup or 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 360 g 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Salt to taste
Step 1: Make the reduced strawberry puree
- Rinse and hull 1 pound of strawberries.
- Puree the strawberries in a blender or food processor.
- In a saucepan over medium-low heat, simmer the strawberry puree for 25-35 minutes, or until it has reduced by half.
- Allow the reduced strawberry puree to cool completely.
Step 2: Prepare the cake pans
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
- Grease two 9-inch round cake pans.
- Line the cake pans with parchment paper rounds.
- Grease the parchment paper.
Step 3: Make the cake batter
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In a large bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar on high speed for 2 minutes.
- Beat in the egg whites on high speed for 2 minutes.
- Beat in the sour cream and vanilla extract.
- With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients until just incorporated.
- With the mixer still running on low, slowly pour in the milk until just combined.
- Do not overmix.
- Whisk in 1/2 cup of room-temperature reduced strawberry puree.
- Stir in food coloring, if desired.
- Pour the batter evenly into the prepared cake pans.
Step 4: Bake the cakes
- Bake for 24-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean.
- Allow the cakes to cool completely in the pans before frosting.
Step 5: Make the frosting
- In a blender or food processor, process the freeze-dried strawberries into a powder.
- In a large bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese for 1 minute on high speed until smooth and creamy.
- Beat in the butter until combined.
- Add the confectioners’ sugar, strawberry powder, 1 tablespoon of milk, and vanilla extract.
- Beat on medium-high speed until combined and creamy.
- Add 1 more tablespoon of milk, if desired.
- Taste and add a pinch of salt, if needed.
Step 6: Assemble and frost the cake
- Using a large serrated knife, slice a thin layer off the tops of the cakes to create a flat surface.
- Place 1 cake layer on a cake stand or serving plate.
- Evenly cover the top with frosting.
- Top with the second cake layer and spread the remaining frosting all over the top and sides of the cake.
- Refrigerate for at least 45 minutes before slicing.
Tips and Tricks
- For a more intense strawberry flavor, you can add 1/4 teaspoon of strawberry extract to the cake batter: Enhance the depth of the strawberry taste in your cake by incorporating 1/4 teaspoon of concentrated strawberry extract into the cake batter. This addition will infuse a richer and more pronounced strawberry essence throughout the entire cake, elevating its overall flavor profile.
- To make the cake even more festive, you can decorate it with fresh strawberries, strawberry slices, or strawberry sprinkles: Elevate the visual appeal and festive charm of the cake by embellishing it with an array of fresh, vibrant strawberries or elegantly placed strawberry slices atop the frosting. Alternatively, sprinkle strawberry-themed edible decorations or festive strawberry-shaped sprinkles over the cake’s surface to add a delightful and celebratory touch, making it visually appealing for your special occasion.
- If you don’t have freeze-dried strawberries, you can substitute 1/4 cup of store-bought strawberry powder: In the absence of freeze-dried strawberries, opt for a convenient alternative by utilizing 1/4 cup of commercially available strawberry powder. This substitute serves as an excellent replacement, ensuring the infusion of strawberry essence into your cake batter, granting it a similar burst of fruity flavor and vivid pink hue without compromising on the delightful strawberry taste.
Strawberry birthday cake is a delicious and festive dessert that is sure to please everyone at your next party. With its light and fluffy texture and sweet strawberry flavor, it is a cake that is sure to be enjoyed by all.
If you are looking for some more cakes to try give our delicious fudge cake recipe.