Prep 45 mins
Cook 30 mins
Apricot nectar suffuses this cake and buttercream with the intense flavor of fresh apricots. It is relatively easy to make and it sure to be an instant favorite.
- 3 cups apricot nectar (recommend Jumex brand, three 11.3 oz cans)
- 2 1⁄4 cups sifted cake flour
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 2 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1⁄2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1⁄2 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temp
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1⁄4 cup water
- 5 large egg whites, room temp
- 3⁄4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 3⁄4 cup reduced apricot nectar (instructions in 'Cake' section)
- Apricot Cake.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Trace the bottoms of two 9" X 1 1/2" cake pans onto parchment paper. Cut out the outlines. Butter and flour both pans, knocking out excess flour. Place traced parchment paper on pan bottoms.
- Pour apricot nectar into a microwave-safe liquid measuring glass. Microwave on high-power until nectar is reduced by half (should measure 1 1/2 cups). This will take 10-15 minutes. Be sure to watch as nectar reduces to ensure that it does not reduce too much. Refrigerate reduced nectar until no longer warm to the touch.
- Meanwhile, sift together flour, salt, and baking powder.
- In a separate bowl, combine butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla.
- Beat for a total of 3 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl.
- Then add flour mixture to creamed mixture.
- Finally, add 3/4 cup cooled apricot nectar to mixture.
- Beat for two minutes.
- Pour batter into prepared pans.
- Bake in pre-heated oven for 30-35 minutes, or until cake tests done.
- Cool in pans on cooling racks for 10 minutes. Then, run a knife along the edge of the pans and invert onto cooling racks to cool completely.
- Apricot Buttercream.
- In a mixing bowl, beat the butter until smooth and creamy.
- In another mixing bowl, beat the egg whites until foamy, add the cream of tartar, and beat until soft peaks. Gradually beat in 1/4 cup sugar until stiff peaks.
- In a small heavy saucepan, heat 3/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup water, stirring constantly, until sugar dissolves and mixture is bubbling. Stop stirring and cook mixture until it reaches 248-250 F, the firm ball stage. It will be thick and gooey.
- Immediately pour the syrup into the prepared egg whites, beat constantly with an electric mixer or hand mixer. Continue beating until mixture is completely cool, 3-5 minutes.
- Beat in the butter 1 Tbs at a time. If the mixture looks curdled, it is likely too cool. Let it sit at room temperature and continue to beat in butter until completely smooth. It will be curdled at first but it will set up when beaten if you allow it to come to room temperature!
- Beat in the remaining 3/4 cup reduced apricot nectar. Allow mixture to come to room temperature and it will set up smoothly when beaten.