In case you haven’t heard by now I am the official winner of the Sunset Magazine Best Butter Cake Recipe Photo Contest! Sunset Magazine believes their butter cake recipe is the best base recipe for any number of creative cakes and challenged their readers to submit a recipe and photo of what they came up with. Knowing that my Lavender Vanilla cake was such a hit in the past, I decided to change it up a little bit and make a Lavender Chamomile Cake. Below is the winning photo I took of the cake (now the property of Sunset Magazine).
- 3 1/2 cups milk
- 3 Tbsp culinary lavender
- 6 chamomile tea bags
Pour the milk into a sauce pan along with culinary lavender and chamomile tea bags. Put the pan over medium heat and stir the lavender thoroughly throughout the milk. Heat until piping hot, but not boiling. Once you’ve reached that point, let the milk steep for approximately 20 minutes. After the milk has steeped, pour through a sifter to catch all the lavender, squeezing the last bits of milk out of the lavender petals.
- 2 1/4 cups cake flour
- 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- About 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup lavender/chamomile milk
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl; set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat sugar and 1/2 cup butter until creamy. Crack eggs into a small dish (do not beat) and add vanilla. Add eggs to the butter mixture 1 at a time, scraping down the inside of the bowl as needed. Beat in flour mixture and milk in alternating batches, starting and ending with the flour and making sure each addition is fully incorporated before adding the next.
2. Butter and flour 2 round 8-in. cake pans. Divide batter evenly between pans.
3. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes.
4. Cool cakes 5 minutes. Invert onto a rack, remove pans, and let cool to room temperature, at least 40 minutes.
- 2 cups lavender/chamomile milk
- 10 Tbsp all purpose flour
- 2 cups (4 sticks butter)
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla
Pour the milk into a sauce pan over low heat. Gradually whisk in the flour, 2 Tbsp at a time until well blended. Continue stirring until it has reached a consistency of cupcake batter (see pic below). Immediately remove from heat and sink the entire sauce pan into a a bowl of ice water. Let cool for approximately 15 minutes. When the mixture has COMPLETELY reached room temperature (any warmer, and this won’t work), stir in the vanilla.
Cream together the butter and the sugar until light and fluffy. At the COMPLETELY COOLED milk and flour mixture and beat for about a while, about 10 minutes. The frosting will come out light and creamy – almost like whipped cream. At this point you can add in any food coloring you desire.
- 2 Tbsp culinary lavender
- 1 egg white
- 2 Tbsp sugar
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Coat the lavender with the egg white using a basting brush. This sounds a lot easier than it actually is. The lavender will stick to the brush, just do your best to make sure all the lavender blossoms are coated. Once coated, roll the lavender around in sugar (again, sounds much easier than it actually is). Spread out the lavender on top of tin foil or parchment paper until it looks like the pic below. Let dry out in the oven for an hour or two. Not only do you get candied lavender (that is delicious), your house will smell amazing!
Cut each of the cakes in half. Put the bottom layer on your cake plate, cover with lemon curd (I bought mine from Trader Joes). Lay down the next layer of cake and coat with the lavender/chamomile Buttercream. Lay down the 3rd layer, and apply lemon curd again. Finally place the 4th layer on top and frost the entire cake with the lavender/chamomile buttercream. You can use the candied lavender to decorate the top of the cake or you may also sprinkle the candied lavender in between the layers.