White Cake – almost had me Djangoed!

Mar 24, 2013 by

I watched Django recently; the bit I think I enjoyed the most was the southern feast prepared on it and particularly the southern accents.  There was a shot at the end of the meal of White Cake and it looked really impressive. Four layers of almost white sponge with that thick American frosting which you just know is going to be tooth-achingly sweet. 

I have made several attempts to make it and get it looking authentic. My first mistake was using Irish butter as it’s much too yellow in colour.  My second using French “white” butter was more successful but I still can’t get it as white as it appears on American websites.   

It has a large number of egg whites and a huge volume of sugar.  Luckily my hens are laying really well at the moment so I don’t feel guilty using so many eggs up.  The sugar is another story though.

For the cake:

200g white butter (I used French unsalted)
350g sugar
6 egg whites
390g flour
1 tsp baking powder
230ml milk

Beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.  In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites to soft peaks and reserve. (the American method said to whisk the egg whites with the milk as you can see I did here but I wouldn’t recommend doing it).  Add the sieved flour and baking powder and stir into butter and sugar mix.  Add a little of the milk to loosen it up.  Fold in the egg whites alternately adding more of the milk until you have a smooth batter.  You may not need all the milk.

Pour into two greased cake tins and bake at 170 deg C for about 30-35 mins until just firm to the touch. I had some of the batter left over and so poured the remainder into silicon bun cases.  These almost took as long to bake as the cakes.

Allow to cool and turn out onto a wire rack.

For the white topping:
200g cream cheese
100g butter preferably white and unsalted
350g icing sugar

Beat the cream cheese and softened butter together until soft and fluffy.  Add in the icing sugar slowly and keep tasting until you get the sweetness you desire bearing in mind that the cake is very sweet and the icing should be a nice contrast.  I used a good bit less than the recipe called for.

Tags: Irish Food  Irish Baking White Cake  Irish Butter  French Butter  Django

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  1. Thank you I will. Must see if I can get that book on Amazon.

  2. Anonymous


    Try this one.

    Wow whoever wrote that recipe had a real sweet tooth! The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum has a number of recipes including one for white and yellow cake. Not sure if they are American enough but that is a good source of recipes and I think the book has them by weight. I don’t if cake flour is available and it maybe costly as it is not a standard type of flour in the UK.

    I did find the velvet white cake too sweet for my tastes when I made it, so I cut the sugar a bit by like a 1/4 cup of sugar. I think you are going to have a hard time with the color because of the differences between ingredients. In the US all white flour is bleached which is basically plain flour, self rising flour and cake flour (bread and unbleached are not) this will cause a lighter color. Cake flour has lower gluten content and a finer texture.

    Cake flour does not seem available in the UK but there seems to be a couple of work arounds(shifting flour, adding corn starch ect. Certain brands and possible a few brands the offer flour for cakes). However cake flour should improve both the texture (make it lighter and softer) and possibly the color of the cake (make it a tad lighter).

  3. Oh why do we not live close to one another? I want to eat all your food–Maresa

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