Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
(180 degrees C) with rack in center of oven. Butter or spray with a non-stick
vegetable spray, two 9-inch x 2 inch (23 x 5 cm) cake pans. Then line the bottoms of the pans
with parchment or wax paper, then spray the paper.
In a bowl, sift or whisk together the
flour, baking powder, and salt.
In the bowl of
mixer, with the paddle attachment, (or with a hand mixer) beat the butter until
soft and creamy (about 1-2 minutes). Gradually add the sugar and beat until light and
fluffy (about 3-5 minutes). Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each
Scrape down the sides of the bowl
Add the vanilla extract and beat until combined.
With the mixer on low
speed, alternately add the flour mixture (in three additions) and milk (in two
and ending with the flour.
Evenly divide the
batter between the two prepared pans, smoothing the tops with the back of a
spoon or an offset
spatula. Bake 27 to 35 minutes or until a
toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean and the cake
springs back when pressed lightly in center.
cakes on a wire rack to cool, in their pans, for about 10 minutes. Then invert
the cakes onto a greased rack. Remove the parchment or wax paper and re-invert cakes so
that tops are right side up. Cool completely before frosting.
Confectioners Frosting: In the bowl of your electric mixer,
or with a hand mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy. Beat in the vanilla extract. With the mixer on low speed, gradually
beat in the sugar.
the sides of the bowl as needed. Add about 2 tablespoons of the milk and beat to combine. Then, on high
speed, beat frosting until it is light and fluffy (about 3-5 minutes). Add more
milk or powdered sugar, as needed, to get the right spreading consistency. If
desired, color the
frosting with food color (I use the gel paste food coloring that is
available at cake decorating stores and party stores).
Assemble: Place one cake layer
(bottom side facing up) on your serving plate and spread with about 3/4 cup (180
frosting. Place the other cake layer (bottom side facing up) on top of the frosting and cover the
entire cake with the remaining frosting. Can place some of the frosting in a
piping bag and pipe a decorative border around the top of the cake (I have used
a Wilton star tip Number 18). Cake can be covered and stored at room temperature
for several days.