Our friend and fellow Vancouverite Kristy Gardner has just released a beautiful new cookbook called Cooking with Cocktails, and we couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate the occasion than by making Kristy’s fabulous Layered Naked Champagne Cake with Buttercream Frosting. Insert champagne bottle emojis here! Packed full of 100 spirited recipes, gorgeous photography and Kristy’s infectiously witty, friendly style – this is a cookbook you definitely need in your kitchen this year.
Layered Naked Champagne Cake with Buttercream Frosting from Cooking with Cocktails by Kristy Gardner
For Champagne Cake
- 1/2 pound (2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature (plus more for pans)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 7 large egg whites
- seeds of 1 vanilla bean
- 2 cups dry sparkling wine
- for serving (optional): fresh berries, edible flowers
For Butter Cream Frosting
- 1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 cups confectioners sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Line three 7-inch springform pans with parchment paper and grease lightly with butter. Preheat your oven to 350 F. Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Mix well. Set aside. In a larger bowl (or the bowl of your stand mixer) beat the butter and sugar together at medium speed until light and fluffy. Mix in the vanilla bean seeds and add the egg whites, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Beat in the flour mixture and sparkling wine alternately, starting and ending with the flour mixture. It should go flour, wine, flour, wine, flour. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl as you go, to get everything incorporated. Divide the batter among the prepared pans (2 cups per pan) and gently tap on the counter to remove any air bubble and flatter the top of the batter – this will help you achieve a flat cake. Remove the cakes from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes. Remove from the pans and turn onto a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
Prepare the buttercream frosting. Place the butter in a large bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer). Beat at high-speed until the butter is pale and creamy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium-low and add the confectioners sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Once each addition of the sugar is incorporated, raise the speed to high for 20 seconds to aerate the frosting. Then lower the speed to medium-low and add the next 1/2 cup of sugar.
Once all the sugar is incorporated, leave the speed on high, pour in the vanilla, and beat for a further minute. To frost, place a dab of frosting on the serving plate. Set one layer of the cake on the plate and use an offset spatula to spread a 1/2-inch layer of frosting on the top of the cake. Place the second layer of the cake on top of the whole shebang and repeat the frosting method until all layers are stacked. Then sparingly cover the top and sides of the cake with the remaining frosting. Garnish with fresh berries and or edible flowers. Don’t worry about its looking unfinished or messy — it’s supposed to; she’s naked!
Get Kristy Gardner’s new cookbook, Cooking with Cocktails, available in bookstores now! Click here to purchase.