Every once in while you just need a good yellow cake recipe. Maybe you are celebrating a special occasion or maybe you just have a craving for “birthday cake.” As a girl of 4 or 5, I have memories of my dad helping my sister and me make a birthday cake for my mom. After mom blew out the candles, they let us scoop the frosting off the cake with our fingers and eat it!
Most of us resort to cake mixes because they are foolproof and time-saving, but the resulting cakes are not the lovely, luscious homemade cakes of our childhood. In reality, my Gr8 baking friends, making the cake from scratch does take longer, but not that much longer. And the homemade version is so much better!
Because cakes have to rise and have a certain texture there are a few things to remember when baking from scratch.
Makes 1 - 8" or 9" double layer cake. This can serve anywhere from 10 to 18 people, depending on how it's sliced!
Preheat oven to 350ºF, and make sure the rack is in the center of the oven.
With an electric mixer cream the butter, then add the sugar and mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy, 3 - 5 minutes. Stop halfway through mixing and scrape down the bowl.
Bake for 20 - 25 minutes.
Cake is done when a toothpick or knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
Remove from oven, cool on rack for 7 - 10 minutes, then run a knife around the edge and turn out onto rack to finish cooling. Peel parchment paper off of cake.
Frost when cake is completely cool.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, on low speed, mix together the melted butter and the cocoa until thoroughly blended.
Alternate adding the powdered sugar and milk, occasionally scraping down sides of the bowl, until completely incorporated. (When adding the powdered sugar, start the mixer on low speed and then raise the speed to high. If you start on high the sugar will fly out of the bowl!)