A soft, moist, delicious vanilla cake with a lemon kiwifruit curd filling and a speckled blackberry buttercream frosting. This beautiful Kiwifruit Blackberry Vanilla Cake is the perfect celebratory cake for life’s sweet victories. Complete recipe includes instructions for a basic vanilla cake, lemon kiwifruit curd, blackberry buttercream frosting, chocolate ganache, and an Instructional Video as well!
The Flavor Bender turned 2 this month! So naturally, I’m celebrating with this gorgeous Kiwifruit Blackberry Vanilla Cake! 🙂 It’s a kiwifruit vanilla cake with blackberry buttercream, and it also happens to be my very first creation with my stunning new girl, Madeline (pronounced Mad-a-lyne; that’s important!) – my brand spanking new KitchenAid mixer! Do you feeeeeeeeel my excitement? 🙂
It’s been 2 years since the first post went up for The Flavor Bender, but it feels both shorter and longer all at the same time. This blog is all about unique flavor combos, creative recipes, and making the process of cooking and baking fun and exciting while giving you the confidence to do so!
And it bears repeating every year that this blog wouldn’t have come to be, if it weren’t my partner in everything, my husband – Mr. K! I’ve always loved cooking and baking and the kitchen has always been my sanctuary. Even though I always used to document the food I made (with terrible pictures), it was always looked upon as a hobby by everyone around me. And when I first found out about this thing called Culinary School, it was my dream to go to Le Cordon Bleu (in Australia) and come out as a top notch chef or pastry chef. It’s not a dream that has came true for me, yet, but Mr. K has has been my biggest cheerleader, backing me 100% for the first time to get started on that dream with this little blog. And I’m loving every minute of it now! 🙂
I made a version of this delicious blackberry vanilla cake for Mr K almost an year ago, but never got around to sharing it on the blog. So today, not only am I going to share with you guys the recipe for a basic vanilla cake, I’m also showing you how to make a regular vanilla cake like this even more exciting with filling and frosting flavor combinations.
A basic vanilla cake can be made impressive by the flavor combinations that you build upon it. Of course you don’t want to go overboard with too many flavors so that some of them get lost, but by focusing on 1-2 stand out flavors (more if your cake is going to have extra tiers/layers), you can really add your mark on the cake. So today my basic vanilla cake gets a super tasty makeover with a delicious, tangy lemon kiwifruit curd filling, and a sweet, fruity blackberry buttercream frosting! 🙂
Beyond being an awesome flavor combo, I also love the aesthetics of the filling and frosting in this Blackberry Vanilla cake. The creamy kiwifruit curd is a gorgeous green with black specks that you get from the seeds, and the blackberry frosting is a beautiful deep purple with dark purple speckles from the druplets. It’s a pretty speckled blackberry vanilla cake, inside and out!
So here’s the recipe for a soft, fluffy, moist vanilla cake that’s light and buttery with just the right amount of sweetness without being rich, and some tips to bake the vanilla cake properly with even, moist results every single time! Plus, a video on how I slice the cake into layers, and then fill it with the kiwifruit curd and frost it with that gloriously delicious blackberry frosting!
This kiwifruit blackberry vanilla cake was also my FIRST project with my new love – Madeline! Thank you KitchenAid for my newest addition. I love her so much!
Kiwifruit Blackberry Vanilla Cake
- 2 ⅔ sticks 11 oz, unsalted butter at room temperature
- 8 oz sugar
- 5 large eggs
- 11 oz AP flour sifted
- 3 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup milk
Lemon Kiwifruit Curd
- 12 oz peeled kiwifruits 3 - 4
- ¾ cup lemon juice
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 eggs
- 4 yolks
- 8 tbsp butter
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tsp cornflour
Blackberry Buttercream Frosting
- 1 ¼ lb butter
- 1 ½ lb icing sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 8 oz fresh blackberry gently crushed
Decorating and Chocolate Ganache Drip
- 4 fl oz cream
- 2 tbsp corn syrup
- 8 oz semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate
- Pinch of salt
Vanilla Cake (needs to be cold in order to slice it into clean layers)
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter and line 2, 8 inch cake pans (I placed parchment paper at the bottom and floured the sides).
- If you have bake even strips (optional), soak these in cold water. ALTERNATELY, cut strips from an old towel (the height of the cake pan), and soak these in cold water. The towel strips should be able to go around the pan twice.
- Add the butter, salt and sugar into your mixer bowl and cream together in your stand mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well between additions. Add the vanilla and mix well.
- While the batter is mixing, sift the flour and baking powder together into a clean dry bowl.
- Add the dry ingredients in 3 batches, alternating with milk (and ending with flour). Make sure to use the stirring speed on your mixer, or mix by hand (if you mix the flour on a higher speed, the gluten will develop and make the cake stiffer).
- Gently squeeze excess water out of the bake even strips or soaked towel strips (they need to be completely saturated with water). Wrap the bake even strips or towel strips around the cake pans and secure.
- Divide the cake batter between the cake pans. Knock each cake pan on the counter a couple of times to remove any air bubbles trapped in the batter.
- Bake the cakes for about 30 - 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remember to rotate the cake half way through the baking time.
- Remove cakes from the oven and let them cool down until warm enough to handle. Turn the cakes out onto a cooling rack (parchment paper side down), and let them cool completely, and refrigerate to make slicing easier (PLEASE SEE NOTE 1 for storing cake layers).
- Level cake layers and cut them into two even layers each - for 4 cake layers. Cold cake is easier to slice.
Lemon Kiwifruit Curd (needs to chill overnight)
- Place the kiwifruits and lemon juice in a blender and blend until kiwifruit is smooth.
- Place the pureed kiwifruit and lemon juice in a nonreactive saucepan. Add the sugar, salt and butter and heat over medium heat while stirring to melt the sugar and butter.
- Add the cornflour, egg and egg yolks into a separate bowl and whisk to combine. Slowly add a little of the heated lemon kiwifruit mix to temper the egg mix. Add the tempered egg mix to the rest of the lemon kiwifruit mix in the saucepan.
- Whisk the lemon kiwifruit curd continuously while heating, until it has thickened. Remove from the heat and let it cool down completely. Whisk the curd well and place the cooled curd in a glass container and store in the fridge (covered).
Blackberry Buttercream Frosting
- Add the butter, salt and vanilla into the mixing bowl.
- With a whisk attachment on medium high speed, whisk the butter until light and fluffy.
- Lower the speed and add the sifted icing sugar, a little at a time, until it has incorporated with the butter.
- Increase the speed and whisk until the buttercream is light and fluffy. Remember to scrape the sides and the bottom of the bowl to ensure even mixing.
- Add the lemon juice and crushed blackberries and whisk until thoroughly combined and fluffy.
- Transfer some of the buttercream to a piping bag with a ¾ inch opening. Set the rest aside.
Chocolate Ganache (make this while the frosted cake is in the fridge)
- Heat the cream, salt and corn syrup in a small saucepan until the mix starts to simmer. Remove from the heat.
- Add the chocolate chips and whisk until all the chocolate has melted and is smooth. Heat over low heat IF there is any unmelted chocolate. Set aside to cool.
Assembling The Cake
- Place the first layer of vanilla cake on an 8 inch cake board and then place this on a cake stand (if you have a rotating cake stand, that's even better).
- Pipe an even layer of blackberry buttercream along the border of the vanilla cake (see recipe video).
- Fill the middle with cooled lemon kiwifruit curd.
- Place another layer of vanilla cake on top. Press down firmly to stick, and make sure the layer is even (however be careful not to let the buttercream squeeze out by pressing too hard).
- Repeat with the remaining cake layers.
- Apply a crumb coating on the cake - sides and top. To make the final frosting application easier and even, place an 8 inch parchment paper, and an extra cake board on top of the cake. Refrigerate the cake until crumb coating is set. SEE NOTE ABOUT CAKE BOARDS.
- When the crumb coating is set, apply frosting liberally to the sides of the cake to cover, and using a straight edged scraper set against the cake boards, rotate the cake while scraping off excess frosting, to create a smooth frosted surface (see recipe video).
- Remove the cake board and parchment paper on top and frost the top evenly.
- Cover with plastic wrap and keep the cake in the fridge (optional) until the ganache is ready.
- When the ganache has cooled down, unwrap the cooled cake and slowly drizzle the ganache along the top edge of the cake, letting it drip down the sides as you go. You can do this with a spoon or with a squeeze bottle.
- Once the edges are done, fill the middle with chocolate ganache and use a small offset spatula to spread it evenly and smoothly. Let the ganache set.
- Pipe blackberry buttercream swirls on top of the cake (using an open star tip on a piping bag) and then some sprinkles in the middle.
- Keep the cake in the fridge until ready to serve.
Tips & Tricks
NOTE 2 - For this 8 inch cake, I used 2, 8 inch cardboard cake trays. These cake trays have a 1/2 cm overhang, which is the perfect thickness for frosting. By properly centering the cake boards with that slight overhang, the straight scraper can be used to make sure there is even and smooth frosting all around the cake.
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