Strawberry Poke Cake

 

My fixation with strawberries began the day I was born (01.05 reads strawberry in Japanese-ichigo). When I was old enough to start making important decisions, I was a very predictable child; shaved ice with strawberry syrup over melon flavor, strawberry frosted donuts with rainbow sprinkles over french cruller, always the strawberry skittles, and I was an unfair player and picked out the berries from fruit bowls.  On this day of sharing love, I pass onto you my love spot for strawberries.  Happy Valentine’s Day!

 Yield: 12 people
*Adapted from Cook’s Country June/July 2007*

Cake
12 tbs (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter softened at room temperature
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 large egg whites
1 3/4 cups sugar

Syrup and Topping
4 cups frozen strawberries

4 tbs sugar
2 tbs orange juice
1/2 cup water
2 tbs strawberry-flavored gelatin
2 cups heavy cream
6 tbs confectioners sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla essance 

Cake

1.  Heat oven to 350 °F and grease and flour 13×9″ pan.
2.  Whisk:  Flour, baking powder, and salt.
Whisk:  Milk, vanilla, egg whites.
3.  Electric mixer on medium-high speed beat butter and sugar until fluffy (~2 minutes).

4.  Add flour and milk mixture alternately, in two batches about 30 seconds each time.
5.  Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the toothpick inserted in center comes out clean and let it cool for 1 hour.

Syrup

1.  Heat 3 cups of strawberries, 2 tbs sugar, OJ, and water into saucepan over medium-low heat for 10 minutes.

2.  Strain liquid into bowl (keep solids) and whisk gelatin into liquid.  Let it cool to room temperature for 20 minutes.

Combine

1.  Poke 50 holes in the cake using a skewer (or chopstick) but do not poke all the way through.

2.  Evenly pour the cooled gelatin mixture evenly over the entire surface.

3.  Wrap with (pink to add more love) plastic wrap and find it a home in the fridge for at least 3 hours or up to 2 days.

The Final Touch

1.  Pulse solid and remaining strawberries with 2 tablespoons of sugar and spread mixture evenly over cake.

2.  With electric mixer on medium-high speed, whisk heavy cream, vanilla, and sift confectioners sugar to soft peak and spread it on!

Boomeringue

Tonight is the Grammy’s and Valentine’s day is in two days so this song is the obvious and appropriate, but also cliche.  Yes, I am also one of the millions who have cried listening to this song.

another Grammy performance by Coldplay.  Don’t we all wish we lived in Paradise?

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