Berry season may technically be ending soon, but we are a household of strawberry lovers year round. Nothing beats a juicy strawberry when it comes to a naturally sweet treat. My family is always up for a bowl of strawberries as a snack, side item or dessert. They are such a staple in our kitchen that one of my daughter’s first words was strawberry. Not that I understood or recognized her pronunciation of strawberry at first…. it sounded more like “shy-ee”. She would say “shy-ee, shy-ee” in this sweet little singsong voice for months before I put two and two together. And when I finally clued in to what she was saying — we both celebrated — with some strawberries! Fast forward a few years and we’re certainly all on the same strawberry loving page when it comes to this cake!
Today’s cake builds upon the flavors of a classic dessert, strawberry pie. We start with a heavenly pound cake recipe that’s baked with graham cracker crumbs inside, giving us that delicious taste of a graham cracker crust. It’s filled with layers of a sweetened Swiss meringue buttercream and just a light slight smear of strawberry jam. Then comes the frosting! This fresh strawberry buttercream not only tastes like summer on a plate, but gives us a perfectly pink cake with tiny flecks of visible strawberry. You’ve gotta love it when the icing itself looks this beautiful. The only thing missing is a mound of strawberries on top…. and the forks!
STRAWBERRY PIE CAKE
a recipe by Carrie Sellman
For the Graham Cracker Cake:
3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 cups cake flour
1 cup finely ground graham cracker crumbs (about 9 sheets)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup whole milk
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
For the Sweetened Buttercream Filling and Strawberry Buttercream Frosting:
10 egg whites
3 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons finely chopped strawberry puree
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