Cook By Book in numbers:
My blog officially turns 1 today! Woohoooo!! Last year today I created and set up this blog and published my first blog-post the next day. For about 2 months before starting this space, I used to publish my recipes and pictures on my Facebook page but later I realized I wanted to share more than just a picture and a recipe with you all, in a more customized manner. That’s how this blog was born. It feels just like yesterday but time really flies when you blog. Blogging has taught me so much. Food photography and food styling is what I’ve become totally obsessed with! It is such a great way to connect with like-minded people all around the world and learn about their culture through food. I have made some awesome new friends!
I owe it all to you gorgeous readers! Thank you for making this past year so fulfilling, from having less than 5 to 500+ followers and many more on social media, I’m very grateful for all the support and love so far. Whether it is just a comment, an email or a follow, I want to thank you for all the amazing gestures that has made blogging so so incredible for me!
I’m so so so happy, totally in celebratory mood! Throwing a party kinda mood. When I’m happy, I bake. So I baked a cake for this virtual party. It’s a party essential after all. Also, it is neither healthy nor low-fat. It’s buttery, sugary deliciousness. Pure vanilla goodness completely covered in pink whipped cream frosting. Yes! Today I’m sharing a classic vanilla cake which is sturdy in layer-cakes but moist and tender at the same time. A cake you can always depend upon. Make this your go-to recipe for anytime layer-cake requirements. Birthdays, Anniversaries or Weddings. An all-occasion versatile cake.
I am no professional at frosting/decorating cakes but I’ve tried my best! Also, I did not have time to make frosting from scratch so I used packaged instant whipped cream, flavored it with 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and colored it with a drop of pink food color. It tasted pretty good too. I hope you enjoy this cake as much as I, husband, a friend, neighbors and my house-help enjoyed! Yes, I believe in sharing the goodness. Always! :)
2-layer Pure Vanilla Cake
Makes: 2 7-inch layers | Prep time: 20 minutes | Bake time: 30-35 minutes | Total time: 1 hour
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- A little less than 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature (about 100 gm)
- 1 and 1/4 cups white granulated sugar*
- Seeds scraped from 1/2 vanilla bean
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 large egg whites
- 1 cup milk
*If you like your baked goods on a sweeter side, use 1 and 1/2 cups sugar instead.
- Preheat the oven at 170ºC / 340ºF. Butter and flour two 7-inch (5-inch or 6-inch works too) baking pans and set aside.
- In a bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In a bowl of your electric mixer, beat butter and sugar together until pale and creamy, about 3-4 minutes. Add vanilla bean seeds, vanilla extract and egg whites and mix until smooth.
- Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients alternating with milk, beginning and ending with dry ingredients.
- Gently stir all ingredients until well combined. Stop mixer and scrape down sides and bottom of the bowl, making sure to have all ingredients mixed well.
- Divide batter among baking pans and bake for about 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in a center comes out clean. Remove and let cool slightly in baking pans for about 5 minutes, then invert on a wire rack and let cool completely.
- Frost cakes as desired. Use this Vanilla Bean Frosting recipe and instructions on how-to-frost-a-layered-cake. I colored the frosting with a drop of rose pink food color.
Note: If cakes are baked in 6-inch baking pans, you may cut them so that you have four layers altogether and if cakes are baked in 5-inch baking pans, you may cut them so that you have six layers altogether. This way you can make 4-layer or 6-layer cake using the same recipe.