Wildflour’s Lady Baltimore Cake With Dried Fruit + Nuts
Yields 1 9-inch 3-layer cake
from Pastry Chef Lauren Mitterer of Wildflour Pastry, Charleston, SC
3¾ cups flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
¾ teaspoon baking soda
1½ teaspoons salt
12 ounces butter, softened
2½ cups sugar
1½ cups buttermilk
1 tablespoon vanilla
10 egg whites
1 cup egg whites (about 8–12 eggs)
2 cups sugar
5 ounces water
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 ounces dried figs
2 ounces dried cherries
2 ounces dried cranberries
4 ounces pecan halves, chopped and toasted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare 3 9-inch cake pans with nonstick spray and line bottoms with parchment paper.
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda,and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.In bowl of an electric mixer, combine butter and sugar. Mix on medium speed until light and fluffy. Alternate adding in flour mixture with buttermilk and vanilla. Mix until incorporated. Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip egg whites on high until stiff peaks form. Stir ¼ of the whites into batter to lighten it. Gently fold in remaining whites until just combined.
Divide cake batter among 3 pans, spread evenly, and bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 25–35 minutes. Let cool. Using a serrated cake knife, trim tops off each cake to make each layer flat.
For filling, fit an electric mixer with a whisk attachment. Put egg whites into mixer bowland set aside.
Combine sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook until 245 degrees (use a candy thermometer). Once sugar mixture reaches 240 degrees, start electricmixer and whip until egg whites are frothy.
With mixer on high, carefully stream hot sugar into bowl. Whip whites on high until they form stiff peaks. Add vanilla and salt. Continue mixing on low until whites are cool.
Remove ¼ of the whites for plain meringue and set aside. Add dried fruit and nuts to remaining whites, mixing by hand until combined.
Alternate one layer of cake with half of the filling mixture and repeat, finishing with last layer of cake.
Gently apply plain meringue to outside of cake and garnish with pecans and dried fruit. Refrigerate until ready to serve.