Pink Champagne Cake
*Adapted from Cooks Illustrated
2 ½ cups cake flour
1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon table salt
2 ¼ cups sugar
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 cup pink champagne, flattened
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
6 large egg yolks, room temperature
3 large egg whites, room temperature
Americolor Deep Pink food color gel
Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 340 degrees. Grease two 8” round cake pans and line bottoms with parchment paper. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and 2 cups sugar together in large bowl. Stir the 1 cup of pink champagne in a measuring cup to rid it of all bubbles. In 4-cup liquid measuring cup or medium bowl, whisk together melted butter, champagne, oil, vanilla, and yolks.
In clean bowl of stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat egg whites at medium-high speed until foamy, about 30 seconds. With machine running, gradually add remaining ¼ cup sugar; continue to beat until stiff peaks just form. Transfer to bowl and set aside.
Add flour mixture to now empty mixing bowl fitted with whisk attachment. With mixer running at low speed, gradually pour in butter mixture and mix until almost incorporated (a few streaks of dry flour will remain), about 15 seconds. Stop mixer and scrape whisk and sides of bowl. Return mixer to medium-low speed and beat until smooth and fully incorporated, 10-15 seconds. Add pink food coloring until you get the perfect shade of pink.
Fold the egg whites into the batter, pour into prepared pans and bake for approximately 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Champagne Simple Syrup
¼ cup champagne
¼ cup water
¼ cup sugar
In a medium saucepan combine sugar, water and champagne. Bring to a boil, stirring, until sugar has dissolved. Allow to cool.
Strawberry Champagne Buttercream
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup shortening
2 lbs powdered sugar
3 tablespoons strawberry puree
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon popcorn salt
¼ cup pink champagne, flattened (stir to release bubbles)
In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream the butter and shortening. Slowly add the powdered sugar until the sugar has been incorporated with the butter and shortening. Add vanilla, flat pink champagne, strawberry puree and popcorn salt.