Utah baker wins nationwide cake contest
Published: March 6, 2013 10:40AM
Updated: March 6, 2013 01:39PM
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Courtesy photo Beets are a secret ingredient in Naomi Kress' Masquerade cake, which won the grand prize in the King Arthur flour brand’s 2012 Great Cake Contest.

Naomi Kress of West Jordan won the grand prize in the King Arthur flour brand’s 2012 Great Cake Contest for her Masquerade cake.

The cake, which includes beets as the secret ingredient, bested 15 competitors from Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Carolina Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington.

The recipe will be featured in the Sprin 2013 issue of The Baking Sheet, King Arthur’s subscription baking newsletter. And Kress won a $500 gift card to the brand’s catalogue.

— Heather May

Masquerade Cake

1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar

1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) vegetable oil

1 can (15 ounce) sliced beets

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 1/2 cups (6 3/8 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 cup (2 1/4 ounces) cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

Filling

1/2 cup (4 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup (2 ounces) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup (4 ounces) confectioners’ sugar

1 tablespoon Instant ClearJel

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup (2 ounces) heavy cream, whipped to stiff peaks

Frosting

3/4 cup (4 1/2 ounces) bittersweet chocolate chips

6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter, softened

7 tablespoons (3 1/2 ounces) heavy cream

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

2 cups (8 ounces) confectioners’ sugar

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and line with parchment two 9” square pans.

For the cake: In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the sugar and oil. Drain the beets and reserve 1/2 cup of the juice. In a blender, puree the beets with the reserved liquid. Add to creamed mixture along with the eggs and vanilla. Blend well. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cocoa powder and salt. Add to the creamed mixture and mix for 30 seconds. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, the turn the mixer on high and beat for 2 minutes. Divide between the prepared pans and bake for 25 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes. Remove the cakes from their pans, peel off the paper and cool completely on rack. Cut each cake in half to make four 9” x 4” strips.

For the filling: Whip the cream until it holds a stiff peak. In a small bowl, mix the softened cream cheese and butter together. In another bowl, whisk together the Instant ClearJel and confectioners’ sugar. Whisk the cream cheese mixture and confectioners’ sugar mixture into the whipped cream in small amounts, alternating between the two until all are added. Chill the filling thoroughly before using.

For the frosting: Melt the chocolate and butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until smooth. Remove from the heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Add the cream, vanilla and powdered sugar. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy.

To assemble: Spread the filling on the tops of three of the layers of cake and stack four layers high, topping with remaining cake layer. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours. Remove from refrigerator and frost. Garnish with grated white chocolate. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Refrigerate leftovers.

Servings • 16