Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mother Knows Best: Italian Cream Cake

italian cream cake | bake at 350 blog
Back when I was in first or second grade, a boy in my class decided to start calling me "Bridget Tee-tee."
{Potty humor is all the rage with the elementary set.}

See, my first name ended with a T and my last name started with a T.  Get it?  What a clever guy.  I didn't find it so funny.

I came home from school crying to my mom about the unfortunate "tee-tee" teasing going on.  My mom asked who was saying it.  I told her...Guy Hartfield.  She gave me some sage advice,
"The next time he says that, call him Guy FARTfield."

Now, I grew up in a house where *ahem* farts were referred to as toots, so I had no idea what it even meant.  Sure enough, the next day at school as we lined up for music class, Guy sidled up along side me and called me "Bridget Tee-tee" just loud enough where the other kids could hear.  Unsure, I told him to "Be quiet, Guy Fartfield!" The other kids laughed and I never, ever heard a word about "tee-tee" again.

italian cream cake | bake at 350 blog
Morals of the story:
  • Don't mess with the girl with curly hair...or her mom.
  • Mother knows best.
italian cream cake with heart frosting |bake at 350 blog
Which brings me to this Italian Cream Cake.  My mother made it a lot when we were growing up.  I grumbled and complained because, hello?  You're making a cake without any chocolate?!?

Turns out, mom was right.  This cake is utterly delicious.  Now, Italian?  I'm not so sure.  I mean, when I think of pecans, coconut, and cream cheese, Italy doesn't immediately spring to mind. 

italian cream cake | bake at 350 blog
Mom's recipe came from the River Road Recipes 2 cookbook.  If you're from the south, I bet you or your mom have at least one RRR cookbook in your collection. They're the Junior League of Baton Rouge cookbooks, and they are winners.

italian cream cake mascarpone | bake at 350 blog
I changed the recipe up a bit...replacing the margarine with butter, adding a little salt, toasting the pecans, etc.  Oh, and since this IS Italian Cream Cake, I updated the frosting with lots of creamy mascarpone.


print recipe photo printrecipe.jpg
Italian Cream Cake
{3-layer cake, serves 12}

for the cake:
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
5 eggs, separated and at room temperature
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup angel flake coconut
1 teaspoon vanilla

for the frosting:
1 & 1/2 cups chopped pecans
12 oz mascarpone, room temperature
4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
2 TBSP unsalted butter, room temperature
1 lb. + 1/4 cup powdered sugar, divided
pinch kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

Butter three 9" round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment.  Butter the parchment and flour the pans.  Set aside.  Preheat oven to 350.

Cream together the sugar, butter and oil.  Add in the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Stir the soda into the buttermilk.  Add the flour and buttermilk alternately, beginning and ending with the flour.  Add the salt with the last addition of  the flour.  Fold in the coconut and vanilla.

Beat the egg whites in a separate bowl until stiff peaks form.  In three additions, fold into the batter.

Pour into the prepared pans and bake for 25 minutes or until done.  Remove to wire cooling racks and let cool in the pans for 10 minutes.  Remove from the pans and let cool completely.

make the frosting:
Place the pecans on a cookie sheet in a single layer.  Bake at 350 for 4-6 minutes, until fragrant and toasted.  Remove from the pan and let cool completely.

Cream together the mascarpone, cream cheese and butter.   Beat in the 1 pound of sugar, pinch salt and vanilla until smooth and combined.  Remove 1/2 cup of frosting for piping and stir in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar to thicken.

Stir the pecans into the remaining frosting.

Spread about 1/2 cup of frosting between each layer of the cake.  Use the remaining to go around the sides and top of the cake.  Pipe a border with the reserved frosting.
italian cream cake | bake at 350 blog
(Note: this frosting makes just enough to cover the cake.  You will not have thick layers of frosting, but it is very rich, so that's ok.)

italian cream cake | bake at 350 blog
Mom, you were right.  I should have never doubted you. {About anything.}

***Guy Hartfield, wherever you are, sorry to out you on a baking blog.  I'm sure we've all learned from this experience.***
italian cream cake | bake at 350 blog

52 comments:

  1. that looks amazing! I've never had an Italian Cream Cake, but they always look delicious. Might have to give this one a try!

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  2. Yummmm! I could just lick that frosting and pecans off the cake and be totally content haha

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  3. I do indeed own my mother-in-law's River Road Recipe book. Did not realize how popular they are, but I do refer to mine on occasion for time tested recipes.
    This has everything one could want from a cake; delicious, beautiful, nutty, creamy, dreamy.

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  4. Love this post...and to the Fartfield's everywhere....beware. This NONNY has a new perspective!

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  5. So, I hope this is the recipe you were looking for:) I like your changes; this cake sounds/looks amazing!
    My maiden name is Bouza (long o, silent u), so I was called Bozo:) I never did have a good retort, haha!

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  6. Oh man, this cake looks like pure delight, and the icing is oh so pretty on it, it even naturally makes hearts!

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  7. Oh my ... I don't think my hips will forgive me for this one. And, I'm okay with that. A beautiful cake!!

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  8. Great story and... oh my... that piece of cake! I may be skipping my bikini plan!!

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  9. i'm gonna make this, but I replace cream cheese with goat cheese on all my recipes - took a french cooking class once and learned this - cream cheese is all chemicals - nothing real in it. The goat cheese flavor add such richness and it not over-powering with all the other ingredients. Try it with a actual cheesecake - glorious!

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  10. Oh Gawd Bridget I hope you don't hear from his lawyers...LOL...but I bet you will here from him...

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  11. That cake looks wonderful. And the story about that GUY made me laugh out loud!

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  12. I grew up in Detroit and had never heard of Italian Cream Cake until my freshman year of college when I roomed with four girls from Texas. Now I live in Austin and Italian Cream Cake is ubiquitous. Where is it from, originally? Do you know?

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  13. O.M.G. Where have you been all my life? I love cake. I love cream. I love Italians. See - this recipe is for me. Thank you!

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  14. hahaha love this story!! And this cake looks fabulous!

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  15. Yeah, I know all about name teasing with my last name being Looney and all. The sad thing is, no one could come up with original jokes. I was always very disappointed with people for that.

    This cake looks very moist and delicious :)

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  16. I love the looks of this cake - moist, soft, fluffy! Happy Mother's Day Bridget!

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  17. This look delicious. Kudos to your mom!

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  18. Italian Creme Cake is my favorite! It was my wedding cake <3 Imagine how happy I was to see the Blue Bell commercial the other day announcing Italian Creme Cake ice cream! I ran right out and bought it and it is delicious. Thanks for all the great recipes Bridget.

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  19. Your mom is awesome! I love that story, and this cake.

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  20. Ha! That is a funny story! Cake looks delicious

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  21. Funny story about Italian cream cake. My mom says she hates coconut, I love it. One day I went to her house and she insisted I try this cake she bought. I took one bite and said this is coconut, it's delicious. She argued with me that there was no coconut in the cake. I had to go to the store with her and show her the label before she believed me! This cake looks so good, I'll have to make it for my mom!

    Also I was showing my son a few of the cookies on your site and he loved your All Saints Day cookies. He thought they were beautiful and even made fun of your "oops" saying it was hardly an oops.

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  22. Your mom is a very wise woman. Not only did she stop that teasing with one word, but she probably made him think twice about ever teasing anyone again. Your cake looks absolutely delicious and one that I would definitely enjoy.

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  23. Increible!! Me he quedado con la boca abierta! Vaya corte tiene esa tarta! Enhorabuena!

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  24. Amazing you found the heart in the icing. Love it! Thanks for sharing the recipe. I chose to eat gluten-free but subscribe to your blog because the pictures are beautiful!

    Janet

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  25. Oh my gosh I just cracked up out loud! This is the funniest story I've read in a long time! Happy Mother's Day and I just wonder if Guy Fartfield reads your blog? That would be awesome!

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  26. Pretty sure I just LOL'd in my office Bridget! Bless your mama's heart and boo on Guy FARTfield for teasing such an awesome curly haired wonder such as yourself!

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  27. Love that story, and HOLY CAKE. Want it.

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  28. Interesting. I've never had Italian Cream Cake. May just have to try this!

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  29. FARTFIELD!! Best ever.

    Italian Cream Cake is the best and yours looks fabulous!!

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  30. I LOVE it!!! Love love love when you make cakes!!! I think its just perfection!

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  31. Hahaha, Love that your mother's lesson was tit for tat!

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  32. Mother knows best indeed :) lovely story, delicious cake.

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  33. Guy Fartfield? Your mom sounds incredible (just like this cake looks!)

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  34. Wow, I'm definitely going to make this in the near future! :)

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  35. Looks wonderful!
    Believe it or not, Italian Cream Cake originated from....TEXAS!

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  36. This cake sounds AMAAAAZZZING! I must try this recipe soon!

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  37. Oh yum! I am going to make this...and serve it with Blue Bell Italian Ceam Cake Ice cream! LOL!

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  38. I love your mom's advice, so perfect! And you cake looks and sounds absolutely heavenly!

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  39. Sooo... I was going through my RSS reader looking for some healthy dinner inspiration. And, of course, this is the first thing I saw. Holy yum, that looks incredible, Bridget!! I absolutely must make this now. Who cares what's for dinner! :)

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  40. Hahaha, I was actually thinking "is Guy Hartfield a real guy"?? And your last sentence confirmed it - and cracked me up in the process!

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  41. That is tooo funny!! :) I love how you incorporate a cute story like that into your post. This is a cake I grew up with in an Italian-American household, and you just brought back a lot of great memories. Thanks Bridget! :)

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  42. I never knew the oven operated when I was growing up because my mom most definitely was not a baker--but I'm still making this for the next family celebration to thank her for being right. About everything. Love it--thanks for sharing!

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  43. If you want to take much from this post then you have to apply such methods to your won website.


    Feel free to surf to my site; size genetics review

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  44. I LOVE Italian cream cake! So happy I found your lovely blog tonight!

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  45. I made this cake for a get-together and it was a huge hit!! I made a couple tweaks for convenience: I used 8 oz each of cream cheese and marscapone (because that's the sizes they come in) and I didn't fold the nuts into the frosting, just pressed them around the sides (my daughter doesn't like nuts and could easily scrape them off the sides).

    DELIZIOSO!

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  46. This looks so good, Bridget! I'd have to make it sans pecans unfortunately, but it looks so good I'm guessing I won't even notice they're gone. Yum!!

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  47. Love Italian Cream Cake - have you had a gateux basque? I learnt how to make it from this course, also very delicious
    https://www.udemy.com/the-pastry-arts-online-pastry-training-centre-part-1/

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  48. A yummy Italian Cream cake can help in any situation....as can stitching a new project!

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  49. Made this for my mother's bday. She used to buy Italian Cream Cakes all the time from this little bakery. Unfortunately, they quit selling them about a year and a half ago. I'm glad I found this recipe and was able to surprise her with this!

    ps. I used a different cream cheese frosting recipe (2 8oz blocks of cream cheese, 2lbs of confectioner's sugar, 2 tsps. of vanilla, & 2 sticks of REAL butter).

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    Replies
    1. Your frosting sounds yummy! This recipe calls for REAL butter, too. Maybe I'm confused. ;)

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  50. Italian Cream Cake and your mom both are fabulous because both know how to make happy us.!! This cake is perfect for mother's day gift.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! Happy baking! :)
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