Here’s another one from the archives.
I made this for a co-worker’s going away party…which was before Labor Day… Anyhow, I wanted to try something new, and had seen a few recipes for mojito cakes but liked none of them. I concocted this recipe and figured that even if it didn’t come out right, there was enough mint, lime, rum, and frosting going on in this cake to conceal any minor problems.
Luckily, it came out remarkably good. I have to say that this cake is a little dense, which is not my preferred texture, but it’s still good, and everyone seemed to really like it (or so I think). I thought it could stand to use a little more mint, but I was afraid of the cake turning out tasting like mouthwash, so I erred on the side of caution. I actually only added 1/3 cup when I made the cake, so I think ½ cup, as listed in the recipe, should do the trick. The rum flavor is very subtle, but there’s enough of it in the frosting to give it a good flavor but not taste too boozy. (On a slightly related note, one of my co-workers had a rum cake at her wedding, and she brought in slices of it for us afterwards – there was so much rum in that cake that I seriously felt buzzed after eating a slice of it, and I’m no lightweight.) Overall, you can definitely taste all the flavors and it kind of is like eating a mojito. I’m not really sure how I feel about the overall concept of a cocktail-flavored cake, but if that’s your thing, then this is your cake.
And although I made this cake at the end of the summer (and meant to post it then…oops), I think it’s actually even more appropriate now – the tropical cocktail flavors can help you pretend like it’s summer (so long as you ignore the piles of dirty snow on the ground).
---------------For the cake
makes one three-layer 9” cake
2 ¾ cups flour
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup milk
1/3 cup low-fat yogurt
¼ cup dark rum
Juice of 1 lime
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
Zest of 2 limes
½ cup packed mint leaves, finely chopped
For the frosting
6 egg whites
1 cup sugar
½ cup light brown sugar
3 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
3 tablespoons dark rum
1 lime, sliced into thin rounds
8-12 mint leaves
2 teaspoons turbinado sugar
Make the cake
Heat oven to 350 F. Put racks in the upper and middle thirds of the oven.
Lightly butter three 9” round pans. Line with parchment paper, then butter again and dust with flour, making sure to tap out any excess flour.
In a large bowl sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk and yogurt until no lumps remain. Whisk in the rum, lime juice, and vanilla and set aside.
In a large bowl (or standing mixer), cream together the butter and two sugars until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the lime zest and mint leaves and mix until combined.
Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and mix on low speed until just combined. Add ½ of the milk mixture and mix until just combined. Repeat, ending with the last 1/3 of the flour mixture.
Evenly distribute the batter between the three pans. Bake until the cakes are lightly golden and a toothpick comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Make sure to rotate the pans halfway through baking to ensure that they bake evenly.
Let the cakes cool completely on a wire rack.
Make the frosting
Make a swiss meringue buttercream frosting using this method.
After all the butter is added, mix in the rum. Add 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing well after each addition.
Assemble the cake
Invert the pans, then turn the cakes right side up. Level the top of each cake using a serrated knife, then brush off any loose crumbs.
Place one layer cut side down onto a cardboard round. Spread 1 cup of frosting evenly over the surface. Place a second layer cut side down onto the frosting. Spread 1 cup of frosting over the surface. Place the third layer cut side down onto the frosting. Spread 1 cup of frosting over the top and sides of the cake, then place into the refrigerator to harden for at least 30 minutes. Spread the remaining frosting evenly onto the top and sides of cake.
Decorate the cake by arranging the lime slices and mint on top of the cake, then finish by sprinkling the sugar on top.