Baking a cake can cure almost any funk besides poorly controlled diabetes or gastroenteritis. Batter is medicine for this doctor. The oven in my house must cook out bad humors, leaving happy, sugary ones. Licking the spoon has no age limit; in fact if I ever have kids, they’ll have to share with me.
This is an easy Valentine’s Day cake. Just like my mom used to make them. Take a square pan and a round one, bake the cakes and cut the circle in half. Attach each semicircle to the top like a diamond and frost the whole thing.
This cake is made of champagne, Andre in fact. Andre, which is really more like bottom of the barrel sparkling wine as many college girls could tell you, makes a very moist cake with a subtle boozy flavor. The cake and frosting are spiked with raspberry liquor.
So cuddle up with your cat, your down comforter, your iPad or whatever you love (I guess you could share with your boyfriend) and enjoy a piece of heart shaped cake. Your mouth will thank you, although your thighs might disagree.
Champagne Raspberry Heart Cake with Cream Cheese Brown Sugar Frosting
1 8 inch square pan, greased and floured
1 8 inch round cake pan, greased and floured
For the cake
2 cups cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1 cup oil
½ cup buttermilk
¾ cup champagne
2 tbsp raspberry liquor
1 tsp vanilla
For the frosting
2 8oz packages cream cheese, softened
1 stick butter, softened
½ cup sour cream
½ cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp raspberry liquor
2 drops red food coloring
3 cups confectioner’s sugar
Preheat the oven to 350. Sift together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the sugar and oil until well blended. Whisk in the buttermilk, then add the eggs one at a time. Whisk in the champagne, liquor and vanilla, then slowly whisk in the dry ingredients, do not overwhisk, lumps are ok. Divide batter so both cakes are at the same level and bake until golden brown or until cake tester or toothpick comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
To make the frosting, beat cream cheese, butter, sour cream and brown sugar until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add vanilla and liquor. Slowly add confectioner’s sugar until well combined, then add the food coloring and beat on high speed for another minute for a very light frosting.
To assemble the cake, using either a piece of cardboard covered with foil or a very large baking pan, release both cakes from the pan. Cut the circle in half, placing one half on consecutive sides of the square. Use a small amount of frosting to make a crumb layer, then generously frost the entire cake. Allow to chill and serve.
Cake loosely adopted from Baking by Dorie Greenspan.