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Classic Yellow Cake

The name says it all. This is the only yellow cake recipe you will ever need. Many people don't like chocolate or nuts, but everybody loves this buttery cake.

Yield: two 8 x 3-inch baking pans or one 12 x 3-inch pan

2 1/4 cups sifted cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound (2 sticks) sweet butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup sour cream
4 large egg whites

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter and line two 8 x 3-inch baking pans or one 12 x 3-inch pan with parchment.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

Cream the butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer until fluffy and light in color, about 2 minutes on medium speed. Add the sugar and continue to mix until fluffy and light.

Add the egg yolks, one at a time, being sure each is well incorporated before adding the next one. Add the vanilla.

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients alternately with the sour cream, beginning and ending with the flour. Be sure the mixture is completely blended after each addition. Scrape the sides of the bowl, and beat for 1 minute.

In a separate bowl, with clean beaters, beat the egg whites to soft peaks. Gently fold the whipped egg whites into the batter with a rubber spatula.

Pour the batter into the prepared pans and smooth with a rubber spatula. Bake in the preheated oven, 60 minutes for the 12-inch square pan or 45 to 50 minutes for the 8-inch pan. The top of the cake should be nicely browned. Test for doneness with a skewer or a toothpick. The tester should come out dry and clean.

Source: Sweet Celebrations : The Art of Decorating Beautiful Cakes - buy this book

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