This luscious strawberry layer cake sandwiched with tangy lemon curd and pink-tinged strawberry-lemonade buttercream has a secret ingredient. It’s mayonnaise. Think of what mayonnaise is — an emulsion of eggs, oil, and acid. All of those ingredients are ones you typically use in baking, and adding mayo to cake batter ensures the cake turns out ultra-moist and tender. Two more smart tricks: The batter is flavored and colored with pureed fresh strawberries cooked down to a thick paste. The rich frosting gets its rosy hue and bright flavor from freeze-dried strawberries, which are available in most supermarkets. The recipe is a Yummly original created by Ashley Strickland Freeman.
- 2 lb. strawberries
- vegetable shortening (or butter, for greasing pans)
- flour (for pans)
- 1 3/4 cups salted butter (divided, softened)
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 3 large eggs
- 4 tsp. vanilla extract (divided)
- 3 1/2 cups flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- red food coloring (optional)
- 1 oz. freeze-dried strawberries (1 1/2 cups)
- 1 Tbsp. whole milk
- 1 tsp. lemon zest
- 2 tsp. lemon juice
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup lemon curd (store-bought)
- lemon slices (optional, for serving)
- lemon zest (curls, optional, for serving)
- Hull and stem 1 1/2 pounds of the strawberries, then pulse berries in a food processor or blender until pureed. (Save the remaining strawberries for serving.) Pour puree into a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until reduced to 3/4 cup, 20-40 minutes. (The texture of the mixture will look like tomato paste.) Set aside to cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour 3 (8-inch) round cake pans. In a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, beat ¾ cup butter and the granulated sugar at medium speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add mayonnaise and beat until creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in 3 teaspoons (1 tablespoon) vanilla.
- In another bowl, stir together 3 ½ cups flour, the baking powder, and baking soda. Alternately add the flour mixture and 3/4 cup milk to the butter mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Beat in the cooled strawberry puree. Add a few drops of red food coloring if you like.
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|Calories990Calories from Fat410|
|% DAILY VALUE|
|Calories from Fat410|
|% DAILY VALUE|
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
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