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Vanilla Bean Cake with White Chocolate Ganache

 Vanilla Bean Cake with White Chocolate Ganache
For a distinctive dessert with unforgettable flavor, I recommend this . The filling for this impressive layer cake. Feel free to substitute your favorite jam and lend your own touch to this signature treat. —Lisa Bogar, Coventry, Vermont
16 ServingsPrep: 1-1/2 hours Bake: 35 min. + cooling

Ingredients

  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1-3/4 cups sugar, divided
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • WHITE CHOCOLATE GANACHE:
  • 12 ounces white baking chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • SWISS BUTTERCREAM:
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 7 tablespoons shortening
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • FILLING:
  • 1/3 cup apricot preserves
  • 1 cup sliced fresh strawberries

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Vanilla Bean Cake with White Chocolate Ganache (continued)

Ingredients (continued)

  • GARNISH:
  • Additional sliced fresh strawberries

Directions

  • Separate eggs; let eggs stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  • Line two greased 9-in. round baking pans with parchment paper and
  • grease the paper; set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, cream butter and 1 cup
  • sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating
  • well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Split vanilla bean and
  • scrape seeds into creamed mixture; discard bean. Combine flour,
  • baking powder and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with
  • milk, beating well after each addition.
  • In a small bowl with clean beaters, beat egg whites on medium speed
  • until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining sugar, about 2
  • tablespoons at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form. Fold
  • a fourth of egg whites into the batter, then fold in remaining
  • whites. Transfer to prepared baking pans.
  • Bake 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center
  • comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire
  • racks to cool completely.
  • Place chocolate in a small bowl. In a small saucepan, bring cream
  • just to a boil. Pour over chocolate; whisk until smooth. Cool,
  • stirring occasionally, to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Beat
  • with an electric mixer until ganache is double in volume, about 2
  • minutes.
  • For buttercream, in a small bowl, combine sugar and cream of tartar.
  • Place egg whites in a double boiler or metal bowl over simmering
  • water; stir in the sugar mixture.
  • Constantly whisk egg mixture until mixture reaches 120-130°. (Do
  • not overheat.) Stirring gently, keep the egg white mixture at
  • 120-130° for 2 minutes. Immediately transfer to a mixing bowl.
  • With a whisk attachment, beat egg white mixture on high speed for 5
  • minutes. Reduce speed; beat 5 minutes longer or until cool and
  • stiff. Transfer to a large bowl.
  • In the same mixing bowl with whisk attachment, beat butter,
  • shortening and vanilla until light and fluffy. With a spatula, stir
  • a fourth of the egg white mixture into creamed mixture until no
  • white streaks remain. Fold in remaining egg white mixture until
  • combined. If frosting is not completely smooth, attach paddle beater
  • to mixer and beat on low speed for about 1 minute.
  • Cut each cake horizontally into two layers. Place bottom layer on a

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Vanilla Bean Cake with White Chocolate Ganache (continued)

Directions (continued)

  • serving plate; spread with half of ganache. Top with another cake
  • layer. Spread with apricot preserves; top with sliced strawberries.
  • Place third cake layer on top; spread with remaining ganache. Top
  • with remaining cake layer. Spread buttercream over top and sides of
  • cake. Top with additional sliced strawberries. Yield: 16 servings.
Nutritional Facts: 1 slice equals 680 calories, 41 g fat (23 g saturated fat), 156 mg cholesterol, 227 mg sodium, 72 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 8 g protein.
Wine: Sweet White Wine: Enjoy this recipe with a sweet white wine such as Moscato or a sweet Riesling.