A couple weeks ago I made my FIRST cake. I mean first, I have never even made a cake out of box before. So I decided to go big for my first cake and make it from scratch. My mother-in-law was coming to town and it was her birthday, so a birthday cake she got!
I had seen this Spiced Poppy Seed Cake floating around Pinterest and I just had to try it. I am a sucker for spiced anything.
For me, this cake took days (honestly, it might be my first and my last cake) but I am sure for you, you could whip it up in no time.
For my flower topper, I just cut a ton a of different sizes of petals our from printer paper. I made about 10 of each size, starting small and getting bigger. I mixed up a color I like with paints and painted both sides of the petals. I let them dry over night and then I just attached them to a kabob skewer using cute washi tape. Starting at the top of the skewer with the littlest petals (I would do about two at a time) – and then just keep adding bigger and bigger petals as you go around. Yes, this takes patience. Again for a more detailed tutorial and inspiration, visit Kelli.
I was pretty happy with the way my first cake turned out, so I wanted to share the recipe with you!
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon cardamo
- 2 sticks (1 cup) salted butter, at room temperature
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 6 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
- 2 cups milk, at room temperature (or warm it in the microwave until it’s tepid)
- 2 tablespoons vinegar
- 1 tablespoon almond extract
- 1/2 cup poppy seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 3 sticks (1 & 1/2 cups) salted butter, at room temperature
- 7 & 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 & 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 & 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
- 6 tablespoons half-and-half, plus more if needed
- poppy seeds for sprinkling
- Prepare 3 9-inch cake pans by spraying them thoroughly with nonstick spray. Line the bottoms with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl: flour, baking powder, cornstarch, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cardamom. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer, cream the 2 sticks of butter, 2 cups of sugar, and half cup honey until light and fluffy, at least 2 minutes, scraping the sides as you go.
- Separate the 6 eggs: the whites need to go in a separate large bowl. (If you have 2 bowls for your stand mixer, use the other one). Set that aside.
- Add the yolks to the butter mixture, one at a time, stirring in between each addition. Make sure you scrape the sides well. Beat until it is smooth and creamy.
- In a small bowl, combine the milk, vinegar, and almond extract. It’s okay if it curdles.
- Add the milk mixture and the flour mixture alternately to the butter mixture, stirring after each addition until just combined.
- Gently fold in the poppyseeds. Set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Add the 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar to the eggs whites. Using an electric mixer, beat the whites until soft peaks form; it will take several minutes.
- Add the beaten egg whites to the cake batter in 3 additions, mixing until just combined.
- Divide the batter evenly among the 3 prepared cake pans. Bake 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Check each cake, some may cook slower than others.
- Remove from the oven and let cool 10 minutes. When you can handle the pans without burning yourself, remove the cakes to a wire rack. Peel off the parchment paper.
- At this point, you can either freeze the cakes to frost later, or do it immediately. To freeze: While the cakes are still hot, wrap each cake tightly in plastic wrap, then in aluminum foil. Freeze for several hours, or up to 3 days. The night before you want to frost, place them in the fridge to defrost.
- To frost immediately: let the cakes cool completely, then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, at least an hour. It’s easier to frost a cold cake.
- To make the frosting: beat together the butter and sugar until a thick paste forms. Then add the extracts and half & half, adding more if it seems too thick. Beat until fluffy.
- Spread about 1/2 cup frosting over each layer. Frost the top of the cake, then spread the excess down the sides.
- Optional: Sprinkle the top with more poppyseeds, and pipe on the stars using a large star tip.