I adapted the recipe from this phenomenal Fine Cooking cake I’ve been making for a few years. Rather than raspberries, I went for a more seasonal cranberry filling and adjusted a few of the other ingredients and steps to suit my needs. If you want to make sugared cranberries for decoration like I did, I suggest either making Tish Boyle’s or Claire Saffitz’s. Both will yield gorgeous, tasty little jewels without too much effort.
Makes one 8 or 9-inch cake
White Chocolate Cake
- 24 tablespoons (338 grams) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 1/3 cups (462 grams) granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs (150 grams)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 1/2 cups (399 grams) cake flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ cups (338 grams) buttermilk
- 6 ounces (170 grams) white chocolate, chopped
Cranberry Orange Filling
- 4 cups (464 grams) cranberries, fresh or frozen
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 orange, juiced
- Water, as needed
- ½ cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
White Chocolate Buttercream
- 4 large eggs (200 grams)
- 4 large egg yolks (74 grams)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups (396 grams) granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- 48 tablespoons (672 grams) unsalted butter, softened
- 8 ounces (227 grams) white chocolate, melted and cooled to room temperature
- Sugared cranberries
Make the Cake:
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour three 9-inch round cake pans, line with parchment and spray again. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the vanilla and then the eggs one at a time, beating after each and scraping down the bowl as needed.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together. Reduce the mixer to low and add about 1/3 of the flour mixture to the butter mixture.
- Alternate the buttermilk and flour in 2 more batches until all combined but not overmixed. Fold in the white chocolate and then equally divide between the pans.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for a few minutes and then invert onto racks to cool completely.
Make the Cranberry Filling:
- Place the cranberries and orange zest into a medium saucepan.
- Juice the orange into a measuring cup. If it does not reach ½ cup in total, fill the balance with water until you reach the desired amount. Add this and the balance of ingredients to the saucepan and set to medium heat.
- Cook for about 3 minutes or until the cranberries begin to soften and pop. Begin to mash with a potato masher until your desired chunkiness and continue cooking and stirring until the mixture thickens, about 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
Make the Buttercream:
- In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the eggs, egg yolks and salt on medium-high speed.
- Meanwhile, combine the sugar and water in a saucepan over medium-high and cook until it reaches softball stage, 238˚F.
- Reduce the mixer to medium-low and carefully pour the sugar down the side of the bowl in a steady stream. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the mixture has cooled to room temperature.
- Add the butter a few tablespoons at a time on medium speed to incorporate and emulsify. Add the white chocolate and whip on medium-high until thick and glossy.
Assemble the Cake:
- Place one leveled cake layer onto a cake board and pipe buttercream around the sides to create a well. Fill with cranberry filling and place the second layer on top.
- Repeat with the second and third cake layers, then coat the sides and top with buttercream. Allow to set in the refrigerator until ready to serve. When ready to serve, decorate with sugared cranberries if desired. Leftovers can be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days.