Mimosa Cake with Champagne Buttercream

A few weeks back, a good friend asked me to make a cake for his girlfriend's birthday. I was super excited that he would trust me to create a cake for the woman he loves! She's a sweet heart and deserved nothing short of fantastic. I immediately began to think of all the cute birthday themes- this cake was going to be stunning! Then my dear friend threw me a curve ball. Two actually.
  1. He wanted the flavor to be orange. Not lemon, not chocolate, not vanilla, not red velvet. Orange.
  2. Green frosting

Orange flavor, I can muster that. But... green frosting? On a birthday cake? Que est-ce que what? Okay Harold. If that's what you want, that's what you shall get. My sole qualm was it looked more like an Easter cake than anything else. Maybe another shade lighter... I placed my hopes on the candles to do all the talking.

Needless to say, there was a rumble dumble, five minutes it lasted. The first version of this cake was a cheat. I used a box mix (gasp) recipe from allrecipes with some adaptations. As usual, it bit me in the ass. The cake was dry and gross. No way was I going to present that hot mess.

The end result was this twist on my favorite white cake recipe. Why white cake? Because it's a clean slate of flavor and incredibly easy to modify. The cake was moist and evenly flavored, with traces of champagne and orange juice, creating a light mimosa effect. I used my favorite champagne- Asti.

The filling is champagne infused mandarin oranges. I added a layer of orange slices which was a big mistake because it made the cake difficult to frost. See that gap? Hellacious to frost. Lesson learned: smash the oranges and blend in with a bit of frosting. If you want, DOUBLE the amount of oranges. At least the birthday girl really enjoyed the chunks of fruit.

The frosting is from I am Baker because she knows manageable frosting. That little bit of shortening makes all the difference the world. Use her full recipe if you're going to make a lot of designs with the frosting. I halved it because let's face it- 2lbs of powdered sugar is a lot.

The flowers on top were made from store bought fondant. I used a set of cookie/fondant flower shaped cutters in 3 sizes, food glitter, and light green sugar pearls. This was my first time ever making fondant flowers and it was not as difficult as I thought it would be! The hardest part was rolling out the store bought fondant. It was a brick!

To help keep their shape and store them, I used an empty egg container. This tutorial was very helpful. All I did was roll out the fondant, cut multiple sizes of flowers, pushed down the center to make it bud with the back of my paint brush, a dab of generic frosting in the middle, insert sugar pearl, and set in egg container to harden.

It didn't turn out the way I had envisioned, but the flavor was yummy and everybody enjoyed it (so I was told). Happy Birthday Yen! Kiss kiss!

PS Sorry for the mediocre pix- this was a late night job, the following day was work, and it was a fire drill to get out on time. You know how it is.

Mimosa Cake with Champagne Buttercream
frosting from I am Baker

2 3/4 cups cake flour
1 cup champagne, at room temperature
1/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
6 large egg whites (3/4 cup), at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar (12 1/4 ounces)
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon table salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened but still cool
1 tablespoon orange zest

1 15 ounce can mandarin oranges
1/4 cup champagne

Glaze (optional)
A lil more champagne

1 lb bag powder sugar
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup shortening
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2- 3 tablespoons champagne
1-2 tablespoon milk

Preheat oven to 350. Spray or butter 2 8x8 square pans.
Take the canned mandarin oranges and drain the juice. Place oranges in bowl and add the champagne. Set aside to let it soak up them juices.
To the cake! Pour champagne, egg whites, orange juice, and extract into 2-cup glass measure, and mix with fork until blended.

Mix cake flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in bowl of electric mixer at slow speed. Add butter; continue beating at slow speed until mixture resembles moist crumbs, with no powdery streaks remaining.

Add 1/2 cup of champagne mixture to crumbs and beat at medium-high speed for 1 1/2 minutes. Add remaining 1/2 of champagne mixture and beat 30 seconds more. Stop mixer and scrape sides of bowl. Add the orange zest. Return mixer to medium (or high) speed and beat 20 seconds longer. 

Pour into prepared pans and bake for about 23-25 minutes, or until skewer comes out clean. Let cakes rest in pans for 3 minutes. Loosen from sides of pans with a knife, if necessary, and invert onto wire racks. Reinvert onto additional wire racks. Lightly brush a little more champagne as a glaze (optional). Let cool completely, about 1 1/2 hours.
Make the frosting.  Sift the powdered sugar into a mixer with the butter and shortening until smooth. Add the champagne and milk. Taste as you go, adding champagne as desired. Just don't add too much or you'll have a thin, goopy sugar mess. Put a some frosting to the side, about 1/2 cup.

You already soaked the oranges in champagne., now drain them. Smash oranges in a food processor or with a fork to make a paste. Add in that 1/2 cup of frosting and mix until well combined. This will be for the middle of the cake. 

Once the cakes have cooled, frost as you desire. Be sure to level it if you're doing layers. 
Just please... no green food coloring!