Thursday, April 14, 2011

Part 2 of cake weekend: Tres Leches

My sweet friend at work, Marta, was celebrating her birthday. She loves Tres Leches cake and I have to agree. It is so unique and decadent. Unlike any cake I have had before. I figured it would be fun to try and make it and let you all know how it went! Marta is also having a little girl in July, so she deserves a special treat!! She's going to be a great mommy!
Now you may have worried about all the red food coloring in the Red Velvet Cake, but with a tres leches cake, all you have to worry about is whether or not you are lactose intolerant! Yes, it has 3 different milks (actually 4) It's basically a sponge cake drenched in the tres leches mixture.

One thing I noticed about the cake right away is it takes 5 eggs and has no butter!! The basic idea is that this is a sponge cake that is able to absorb this wonderful concoction of milk without getting soggy.


For the cake:
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar, divided
  • 5 eggs (you will separate the yolks from the whites)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 cup milk
Tres Leches:
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 1 can sweetened, condensed milk
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
Whip cream icing:
  • 1 pint heavy whipping cream
  • 3 Tbs sugar
  • add vanilla for flavor, I added about a teaspoon
For the cake, preheat oven to 350 and liberally grease a 13x9 pan.
Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and set aside.
Using your mixer, beat the egg yolks with 3/4 cup of sugar until they are pale yellow. Stir in the 1/3 cup of milk and vanilla. Pour this mixture into the bowl with the flour mixture and stir gently till combined.
You'll need to wash out your mixing bowl so you can now beat your egg whites. Beat egg whites on high speed until soft peaks form. This may take a minute or two. With the mixer still going, add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.
**Blogger's note: I think I got my egg whites a little too dry. Beating egg whites is just nerve-wracking for me! I'm always nervous about it! However, I don't think it affected the cake at all.**
Gently fold egg white mixture into the cake batter. Stir until just combined. Pour into prepared pan and smooth out surface if needed.

Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
***Blogger's note #2: my cake only needed to bake for 20 minutes! I'm so happy I checked it early. I think this may have something to do with my egg whites. Maybe give the cake a sneak peek early on.***
Combine the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, and heavy cream in a dish that you can easily pour from. Give it a little stir to combine. When your cake has cooled, pierce it several times with a fork. Slowly drizzle mixture over top of cake ( you may not need the entire mixture, I had about a cup left)

While the cake is setting up, mix your whipped topping. Combine whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla in your mixing bowl until it is thick (I'd absolutely sneak a taste of won't be sorry)
Spread over the top of the cake. For extra fun you can top it with some maraschino cherries, I thought it looked really cute for a birthday cake.

I was happy with the way this tres leches cake turned out. It's a special cake, that was really fun to make. Everyone at work seemed to enjoy it and best of all the birthday girl was happy!