A simple recipe for yellow cake becomes the foundation for extraordinary desserts. Martha shares her father’s favorite birthday cake, with an orange curd filling and a rich chocolate frosting — and offers tips for creating a bakery-worthy layer cake, such as creating even layers and applying a perfect coat of frosting. From a mouthwatering stone-fruit upside-down cake to a batch of strawberry cupcakes, Martha covers the possibilities for this yellow cake recipe.
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Martha shares her father’s favorite birthday cake, with an orange curd filling and a rich chocolate frosting—plus tips for creating a bakery-worthy layer cake, such as how to create even layers and apply a perfect coat of frosting. From a mouthwatering stone-fruit upside-down cake to a batch of strawberry cupcakes.
Watch This Week’s Baking Tip
Martha Stewart shows how she creates perfect layers for every cake.
This Week’s Recipe
Yellow Butter Cake
This is the kind of classic, all-American layer cake that birthday memories are made of. It's guaranteed to please a crowd. To make an 8-inch layer cake, as featured on "Martha Bakes," finish with chocolate frosting.
- 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
- 1 1/2 cups cake flour (not self-rising)
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cups milk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter two 9-by-2-inch round cake pans; line the bottoms with parchment paper. Butter parchment, and dust with flour, tapping out excess; set aside. Into a medium bowl, sift together flours, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in eggs, one at a time, then beat in vanilla.
- With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture in three parts, alternating with the milk and beginning and ending with the flour; beat until combined after each addition.
- Divide batter between the prepared pans, and smooth with an offset spatula. Bake, rotating the pans halfway through, until cakes are golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer pans to a wire rack to cool 20 minutes. Invert cakes onto the rack; peel off the parchment.
- Reinvert cakes and let them cool completely, top sides up.
Tips/TechniquesThis yellow butter cake recipe is adapted from "Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook" for The Martha Stewart Show.
Yield: Makes two 9-inch cake layers
Additional recipes and video clips from the episode are available on MarthaStewart.com including: