Strawberry Layer Cake

Believe it or not, this cake is actually “healthy”.  It comes from the Cooking Light:  Cooking Through the Seasons cookbook.  This is a nice and refreshing springtime cake with real strawberries, lowfat buttermilk, and egg whites in the batter, rather than a boring old cake mix.  The icing has 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, orange juice, and powdered sugar, for an exceptionally sweet frosting.
My mom decided to make this cake last Sunday for our family because we were in the  mood for something fruity, not chocolatey.  If you have ever been to Celebrity Cafe’ & Bakery in Colleyville, Highland Park, or Frisco, you’ll think we catered this cake from them because of its sweetness, and the fact it is pink (the entire inside, walls and everything are painted pink at Celebrity Bakery, and you’d be hard pressed to see a man in there!)
Enjoy this wonderful Strawberry Layer Cake….which I almost forgot to mention, we made into a one-layer, 9 x 13-inch pan rather than a two layer round cake.  It doesn’t matter if you choose the one or two layer presentation, it still tastes the same.  Enjoy!

Strawberry Layer Cake
1 1/4 cups sliced strawberries
10 oz. all-purpose flour (about 2 1/4 cups)
2 1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
2 large egg whites
1 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/4 tsp. red food coloring
Cooking Spray

1/3 cup (3 oz.) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
1/3 cup butter, softened
2 Tbsp. Grand Marnier (orange-flavored liquor or orange juice may be substituted)
3 cups powdered sugar
12 whole strawberries

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2.  To prepare cake, place sliced strawberries in a food processor; process until smooth.
3.  Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife.  Combine flour, baking powder, and salt, stirring with a whisk.  Place granulated sugar and 1/2 cup butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Beat in egg whites.  Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternatively to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture.  Add pureed strawberries and food coloring; beat just until blended.
4.  Divide batter between 2 (8-inch) round cake pans coated with cooking spray.  (We just used one 9 x 13-inch pan).  Bake at 350 degrees F. for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes.  Remove from pans; cool completely on wire racks.
5.  To prepare frosting, place cream cheese, 1/3 cup butter, and liqueur in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended.  Gradually add powdered sugar, and beat until just blended.
6.  Place 1 cake layer on a plate; spread with 1/2 cup frosting.  Top with remaining cake layer.  Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake.  Cut 1 whole strawberry into thin slices, cutting to, but not through, the stem end.  Fan strawberry on top of cake just before serving, if desired.  Cut remaining 11 strawberries in half.  Garnish cake with strawberry halves, if desired.  (If frosting a 9 x 13-inch cake, just layer frosting, evenly, on the top of the cake.)

Serves:  16
Cooking Light, May 2009

Nutritional Information
Calories:  348
Fat:  11.3 g
Protein:  4.3 g
Carbohydrate:  57.7g
Fiber:  0.7g
Cholesterol:  55mg
Iron:  1.1mg
Sodium:  212mg
Calcium:  74mg

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