Monday, March 28, 2011

Birthday Blues (Blueberry Chiffon Cake w/ Lemon Buttercream)

Wednesday was my friend Nik's 21st birthday.  He has been one of my closest friends since freshman year and was my roommate last year.  Nik's favorite color is blue, and everything in his room is blue, so his housemates decided to throw him a blue birthday party.  The cake was to be no exception.  But you know me, I never like to choose the conventional route with my friends' birthday cakes, so instead of making some unsightly blue frosting, I decided to surprise Nik by making a white frosting on a blue cake.  That's right, I said it: BLUE CAKE.  It took me about 40 drops of food coloring to get it that way to keep it from being green (because of all the egg yolks), but in the end, it was blue.  If you're ever brave enough to attempt it yourself, (or maybe you'd never touch this recipe with a ten foot pole but are still curious), here's what I did:

Blueberry Chiffon Cake with Lemon Buttercream
Recipe adapted from Kirbie's Cravings.
Cake Ingredients:
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 Tbs baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup pureed fresh blueberries
1/4 cup milk (I used whole)
2 tsp vanilla extract
Blue food coloring
6 egg whites
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
3/4 cup sugar

Sift together dry ingredients in large mixing bowl
Combine blueberry puree and milk
Whisk together egg yolks, vanilla, oil, and blueberry mixture
Add as much food coloring as desired to make mixture blue
Add wet ingredients to dry and beat on medium speed until smooth (Mixture will be thick)
In a separate bowl, beat egg whites and cream of tartar until you have soft peaks.  Gently fold in 3/4 cup sugar.
Gently fold egg whites into cake batter, 1/3 at a time
Divide into two well-greased and floured 9" cake pans.  Bake at 350°F for 50-60 minutes.  Cool in pans on wire racks.
I did want something blue on the outside of the cake, but wanted to avoid piping colored buttercream, so I went to the candy section of our campus grocery store and decided to get creative.

Blue Raspberry Jolly Rancher Circles
About a dozen blue Jolly Ranchers
1/2 cup water

Chop up Jolly Ranchers as best as you can
Boil water and Jolly Ranchers over medium heat, stirring constantly for 8-10 minutes. 
Once mixture has reached a thick, bubbly consistency, pour into desired molds (I used a silicone mini-muffin pan).  Let cool in refrigerator for several hours until set.
When I leveled the cake, I was pleasantly surprised to find this color inside
Lemon Buttercream
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
2 Tbs lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla
3-4 cups confectioners' sugar

Cream together shortening and butter until smooth
Add rest of ingredients and beat until fluffy and smooth
Spread a small layer of buttercream on the bottom cake
Top with fresh blueberries
Add second leveled cake layer and push down gently
Frost rest of cake, starting at the top and working your way out and down the sides
The final product
All blue
Me and the birthday boy, cutting his cake
Discovering that the inside of the cake is blue!
It doesn't look very appetizing, but if you can get past its color, it's really tasty!

In the end, we had a great time dancing at Nik's party, and we beat the birthday blues.  Hope you had an equally great weekend!

Love and cookies,

1 comment:

  1. Your cake looks great! I'm not sure how you did the blueberry puree, but to obtain a darker blue from the blueberries, you can cook the blueberries with sugar before pureeing them and it is a really dark blue color. I did it for these blueberry cupcakes here
    I think this may make your batter less green from the eggs.