Basic Yellow Cake

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Basic Yellow Cake
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Prep Time 60 minutes Cook Time 2 to 2-1/2 hours

A good basic yellow cake recipe is a versatile addition to any home baker's recipe box. This recipe can be used many ways, dressed up or dressed down. There is so much you can do with the basic yellow cake to change it up or adjust the flavor. Use your fa

What you'll need

  • No-stick cooking spray with flour
  • 3 cups cake flour, sifted
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2-1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup butter at room temperature
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (or other flavoring)
  • 2 cups milk

You can also add your favorite filling between layers, instead of icing. You can substitute regular flour in the cake recipe for cake flour. The texture will be a little coarser but the flavor will still be great.

How to make it

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray the bottoms and sides of two 8- or 9-inch pans, one 9x13-inch pan, or 24 to 36 2-1/2-inch muffin cups  with a no-stick cooking spray.

  2. Sift together the flour and baking powder into a medium bowl and set aside. In a large mixing bowl mix the sugar and butter on medium to high speed for 30 seconds, or until mixture is light yellow and well blended. Add the eggs to the mixture one at a time, beating on medium for 30 seconds after each egg. Add the vanilla and mix until well combined. Add the sifted flour mixture and the milk alternately, mixing at low speed until both are fully incorporated. Do not over-mix.

  3. Divided batter evenly among the pan(s) and bake 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. (For 9x13-inch pan, baking time may be a few minute longer. For cupcakes, check at 18 minutes. Cool in pan(s) on rack for 10 minutes.

  4. Gently turn cake(s) out onto a cooling rack. To prevent cracking, put the cooling rack upside down on top of the cake, then flip the whole thing over together, while you hold the cake and rack securely together.

  5. After the cake is cool, level the top with a serrated knife. To reproduce the cake shown in the photo, prepare Butter Cream Icing. Put a small amount of icing on the cake plate, and add the bottom layer of cake. This will help "glue" the cake to the plate. Spread icing on top of the bottom layer of cake, then add the top layer. Cover the entire cake with a thin layer of icing to seal in the crumbs, and then let the cake sit for 15 to 20 minutes to let the icing dry before applying a second layer of icing.Take a damp rag and wipe the cake plate around the base of the cake to get rid of any stray icing.

  6. Once the cake is iced you can add a decorative border around the top and/or bottom if you'd like. To create a simple scalloped border use a star shaped decorating tip (like a Wilton #16) inserted into the end of a pastry bag. Hold the bag, with the tip aiming down toward the cake, and squeeze the icing then lift the tip up, forward and release. Put the tip over the end of the scallop you just made, and repeat the process, until you get all the way around the cake.

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