I believe some of life’s best moments come alive following bouts of heaviness. When the lows are low, the highs are even higher. This heaviness and density provides substance, meaning, grittiness, realness, truth, and sincerity…all which make for living a rich and fulfilling experience on this planet. Which is what we all ultimately strive for, right? At least I do. But there are some people in the world that are like human Eeyore’s, dragging their blankets and permanent heavy heart into life and never coming out of it.
I suppose what they don’t realize is that it can be effortless to come out those moments if you have the will for it. Your will is stronger than you think it is, and it can make something that was once grave light as a feather, whimsically floating in the air a la Forrest Gump intro and ending. Whizzing through moments like the strands of a dandelion flower. So, although we love that heaviness at times, at times, this weightlessness can be highly desirable, and equally just as good if not better.
When it comes to cakes, pound cakes are so heavy sometimes that they fall onto tables and plates like a cinder block. While I love the dense, concentrated crumb and uber buttery essence of the pound cake, sometimes I want something with less substance. Do you ever feel that way? Because this whipped cream cake answered my prayers, providing full pound cake essence while lending a looser and more tender crumb, dissolving with each bite like a simple poof of a magic wand.
This cake is perfect to serve at a brunch or breakfast gathering, with an extra helping of whipped cream (why not?), jam, honey, or dulce de leche spread. Plus, you can get rid of that lingering pint of heavy cream in your fridge, one that lasts well past its expiration date, by the way. One thing’s for sure, people of all walks of life will enjoy it, and it might even hold the power to lighten some of the heaviest hearts out there.
Whipped cream cake
Adapted from Rose’s Heavenly Cakes
Note: you might have noticed that this cake has no butter or oil but don’t fret, the heavy cream is definitely sufficient to let it stand on its own, complete with creamy butter flavor.
2 ¼ cups cake flour or bleached all-purpose flour, sifted OR 2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups heavy cream, cold
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup + 2 tablespoons superfine sugar (make superfine sugar by whizzing granulated sugar in a food processor for ten seconds, if you don’t feel like doing that, just use granulated, it won’t make too much of a difference)
Confectioner’s sugar, for dusting.
Set an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and set the oven at 375 degrees. Coat a 9 or 10-cup bundt pan with butter or cooking spray (with flour, preferably).
In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, and salt and then sift them together to make the mixture easier to incorporate.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk beater or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, whip the cream, starting on low speed, gradually raising the speed to medium-high as it thickens, until stiff peaks form when the beater is raised.
In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs and vanilla just until lightly combined. On medium-high speed, gradually beat the egg mixture into the whipped cream. The mixture will thicken into mayonnaise consistency. Gradually beat in the sugar. It should take about 30 seconds to incorporate it. Detach the bowl and whisk beater from the stand.
Add half the flour mixture to the cream mixture and, with the whisk attachment stir and fold in the flour until most of it disappears. Add the rest of the flour mixture and continue folding and mixing until all traces of flour have disappeared. Using a silicone spatula or spoon, scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Run a small metal spatula or dull knife blade through the batter to prevent large air bubbles, avoiding the bottom of the pan. Smooth the surface evenly with a small metal spatula.
Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted between the tube and the side comes out completely clean and the cake springs back when pressed lightly in the center. The cake should start to shrink from the sides of the pan only after removal from the oven.
Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. With a small metal spatula, loosen the top edges of the cake and invert the cake onto a wire rack that has been coated lightly with nonstick cooking spray. Cool completely and dust with the confectioner’s sugar. Serve with whatever you feel like having that day.