Raspberry Tres Leches Cake

From 6 Bittersweets
Adapted from Sunset
Makes 10 to 12 servings

XIAOLU'S NOTES: Evaporated goat milk (Meyenberg is a popular brand) is sold in many grocery stores. I couldn't find it in mine, however, so I substituted regular evaporated milk and the cake was still fabulous. Look in the baking aisle, near the condensed milk. The cake and tres leches sauce (prepare while cake bakes) can both be made a day ahead; reheat tres leches sauce before drizzling over cake. You can chill the completed cake for up to 3 days (garnish with raspberries just before serving).

1 1/3 cups all purpose flour [stirred, spooned, and leveled to measure]
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
6 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
6 Tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Tres Leches Sauce
1 can (12 oz.) evaporated goat milk (see Notes)
1/4 cup sugar
1 stick cinnamon (about 2 inches)
1/8 tsp baking soda MIXED WITH 2 tsp water
2/3 cup canned sweetened condensed milk
1 1/4 cups light cream
2 Tbsp rum [optional]

Filling and Frosting
2 cups fresh raspberries, divided
1 1/2 Tbsp granulated sugar
2 cups whipping cream
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
6 Tbsp powdered sugar, sifted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F; position rack in center of oven. Cut a large parchment circle about 13 inches in diameter and place it atop the base of a 9-inch springform cake pan (at least 2 inches deep). Place the pan's rim back on top of the base and lock it in, securing the edges of the parchment paper. Now butter and flour the bottom and sides of the pan, and set aside.

For cake: Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together; set aside. Select a large stainless steel bowl (at least 10-cup capacity) that can nest comfortably in a large pot. Fill pot halfway with water and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer. In bowl, combine eggs and sugar. Set bowl over water; with a handheld mixer, beat eggs and sugar at high speed until pale and thick enough to fall from a spoon in a wide ribbon, about 10 minutes. [If you have a stand mixer but no handheld, combine eggs and sugar in your metal mixer bowl. Set bowl over water, and whisk continuously by hand until the mixture is very warm and foamy. Then remove the bowl from heat and attach it to your stand mixer. Mix until pale and thick enough to fall from a spoon in a wide ribbon, about 10 minutes.]

Remove bowl from heat. Add sifted flour mixture to egg mixture and immediately fold in gently but quickly. Add melted butter and fold in gently until no streaks remain. Scrape batter into prepared pan. Bake on center rack until cake is evenly browned, just begins to pull from pan sides, and springs back when lightly touched in the center, about 35 to 40 minutes. Set pan on a cooling rack and let cool 5 minutes. Run a thin knife between pan and rim. Remove rim and let cake cool completely.

For tres leches sauce: In a large pot (at least 6-qt. capacity) over high heat, combine goat milk, sugar, and cinnamon stick. Bring mixture to a boil. Stir in baking soda mixture (sauce will foam up) and reduce heat to medium. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce turns a caramel color and reduces to 3/4 cup, 10 to 12 minutes.

Remove sauce from heat; discard cinnamon stick, and stir in condensed milk, whipping cream, and rum. Use warm.

With a long, serrated knife, cut cake in half horizontally. Lift off cake top and set, cut side down, on a flat plate.

Transfer cake bottom off the pan base onto a cake stand or other serving platter. Poke cake bottom all over with a toothpick, being careful not to poke all the way through. Slowly spoon enough warm tres leches sauce (slightly less than 1 cup) over cake bottom to saturate well but not cause it to ooze. Let stand until cool, about 10 minutes.

For filling: Reserve 1/2 cup of raspberries to go on top of the cake, then put remaining fruit in a bowl and mix gently with granulated sugar. Set aside. In a chilled bowl, use a mixer to whip cream until it holds medium stiff peaks and is thick enough to spread. Add vanilla and powdered sugar; mix well.

Scoop about 1 2/3 cups whipped cream onto cake bottom and spread evenly, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the edge. Dot with sugared raspberries, pushing them down into cream. Carefully transfer the cake top, cut side down, onto the base and make sure they are aligned. Poke top all over with a toothpick as before, then slowly spoon slightly less than 1 cup of sauce evenly over cake top to saturate.

Now smoothly frost top and sides of cake with remaining whipped cream, then use a clean towel to wipe any stray frosting or sauce from around the base. Cover cake without touching (invert a large bowl over it) and chill at least 2 hours. Cover and chill reserved raspberries if held longer than 2 hours. Cover and chill remaining tres leches sauce.

Uncover cake and decorate with reserved raspberries. Serve with remaining tres leches sauce.