Here’s a little something to brighten your Monday morning: plan to make this lovely cake sometime this week! Berries and white chocolate love to be together for dessert. I developed this recipe back in my farmers market days, and it has certainly stood the test of time. It’s gone through a million revisions, so the one I present to you today is truly my baby, and I am quite proud of it. Do not question the secret ingredient, friends. It is the key to a moist, dense, perfect golden cake– one that will serve you well for years to come. Once you master this small cake, you will think of so many ways to change it up.
I have adapted the icing on this cake from LCBO Food & Drink; changing it slightly to fit my taste. The berries can be whichever kind you wish: just be sure to store them in the refrigerator, and don’t wash and dry them until just before you are ready to place them on the cake.
Preheat the oven to 325°F. This cake is taller and denser than most, so we use a lower temp and a longer cooking time. This allows even baking all the way through without the outside baking too quickly. Prepare a 6-inch cake pan as described in this post.
Now, make the mashed potatoes. Remember, this is the key to the cake. So try not to be like ‘ew-potatoes!’– just do it.
In a microvave-safe glass or small bowl, bring 6 tablespoons of water to a boil. This should take between one and two minutes. Once it’s boiling, remove it from the microwave, and stir in 2 tablespoons instant potato flakes. Allow your mashed potatoes to cool while you make the rest of the cake.
In a medium bowl, cream together butter and sugar. When you’re done, the mixture should be totally homogeneous, and have the consistency of wet sand. Add the egg, vanilla, salt, baking powder and cinnamon, stirring well to combine. (Don’t leave out the cinnamon. It’s not optional unless you replace it with the equivalent amount of another flavor.)
Now stir in the mashed potatoes. Really mix it well so that everything is evenly incorporated. Add half the flour; stir. Add half the milk; stir. Add the remaining flour; stir. Add the remaining milk; stir.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, smooth the top, and bake for 40 minutes. This cake pulls away from the sides of the pan as soon as it starts to cool– a good sign that it is fully baked.
Allow it to cool in the pan ten minutes, then turn it out onto a cooling rack to cool completely. I like to cover the cake with a clean kitchen towel while it’s cooling, so there’s no chance of it drying out.
While the cake cools, make the icing. In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the white chocolate in 20-second bursts, stirring between each burst. When the chocolate is melted, allow it to cool for about five minutes.
Using hand-held electric beaters, beat the softened butter and cooled chocolate together. Once they are completely blended, add the vanilla, salt, powdered sugar, and heavy cream. Blend well on medium-high speed until fluffy.
When the cake is cool, plate it, ice it, and top it with berries. Fresh mint is a nice addition if you have it. Chill the cake for an hour or two if you have time. If not, it will still be wonderful. This is a cake that makes people stop mid-bite to savor and exclaim. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Serves 1-4 people.
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