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This week’s TWD was chosen by Carol of mix, mix…stir, stir: perfect party cake! I’d actually made this cake last year for my grandmother’s birthday and we all loved it! I decided to scale the recipe down and make cupcakes this time as I really didn’t have an occasion for a giant layer cake and didn’t need all that temptation hanging around. I made 1/4 of the recipe, which yielded 5 cupcakes. They baked up beautifully in about 18 minutes.

When I made the cake last year I’d tried Dorie’s whipped cream frosting recipe instead of the buttercream called for in the perfect party cake. I’m sure the buttercream is fantastic (how could it not be with 3 sticks of butter?) but I actually prefer a whipped cream frosting. Besides, I’d convinced myself the heavy cream in the whipped cream was healthier than the 3 sticks of butter in the buttercream (I’ve never actually compared the nutritional data on the two – I’m afraid of what I’d find). This time I went with a whipped cream frosting again but tried a lemon whipped cream playing off of the lemon flavoring in the cake.

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Dorie’s cake is just as fantastic as I remember it! It’s very light and I love the nice tight crumb on the cake. The lemon whipped cream worked perfectly with the lemon flavor in the cake. The whipped cream has just the slightest hint of tartness from the lemon zest and juice but it’s well balanced by the touch of sweetness from the sugar. I will definitely make both the cake and this whipped cream again! You can find the recipe for Dorie’s perfect party cake on Carol’s blog. Even if you’re not going to try the cake, you should visit Carol’s site and check out her gorgeous photography! If you’d like to see the other cakes this week visit the TWD site.

Lemon Whipped Cream
from Bon Appetit, April 2006 via Epicurious.com

1 cup chilled heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon lemon zest
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and, using an electric mixer, beat to soft peaks. The whipped cream can be made up to 4 hours ahead. Cover and chill and rewhisk before using.

Makes about 1 1/2 cups.