I am sharing a sneak peak at a recent Halloween photoshoot I did because the cake recipe is too good not to share. I’m sure by now you know I am a huge fan of the naked cake. So much so, I even bought this stunning cookbook to get more inspiration. I made this really simple two layer cake topped with a festive halloween figurine (I left the paper film on for a more rustic look), fresh figs, and a gorgeous colored dahlia. I found the black and white cake stand at Home Goods and it is quickly becoming my new favorite stand, it pairs perfectly with this style of cake. I have a feeling this fluffy vanilla bean cake paired with a spicy vanilla chai buttercream will be on heavy rotation around here this fall. It is such a good combination and the chai is a bit unexpected. See the easy recipe below!
Vanilla Bean Cake Recipe
- 2 2/3 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- scraped beans from 2 pieces of vanilla
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup milk
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Flour, butter and line two 9″ cake pans with parchment paper, set aside. In a bowl of an electronic mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream the butter on low speed. Add the sugar and vanilla extract and beat until light and fluffy (about 5 mins) Add the eggs one at a time and scrape down the sides of the bowl, mix until well combined and light. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture alternating between the dry mix and milk. Mix until everything is combined. Pour batter into prepared cake pans and bake for for 30 to 35 mins or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool the cakes on a wire rack before frosting.
Vanilla Chai Buttercream Recipe (makes enough for 2 layer cake)
- 2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 8 cups confectioners’ sugar (sifted, crucial step to smooth frosting)
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. cardamom
- 1/2 tsp. ginger
- 1/4 tsp. cloves
- pinch of salt
To make the frosting, beat the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer until smooth. Add the vanilla and beat to combine. Add the sifted powdered sugar in 4 parts, so it doesn’t fill up the bowl too quickly and beat until the frosting is light. Add the heavy cream until the consistency is nice and smooth. Finally, mix in the spices and a pinch of salt and beat until combined. Taste and add more spices if needed.
Prepare the cake layers by slicing off the top of each one to make them flat. Spoon a heavy layer of frosting over the first layer and work it out to the sides with a flat cake spatula. Place the second layer on top (upside down) and repeat the same steps. Work frosting lightly around the sides of the cake until you get the desired look. Top with a festive topper or a small handful of fresh fruits and flowers.
all photos by Torrey Fox