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Vanilla Bean Cake with White Chocolate Ganache

For a distinctive dessert with unforgettable flavor, I recommend this cake. Feel free to substitute your favorite jam and lend your own touch to this signature treat. —Lisa Bogar, Coventry, Vermont
  • Total Time
    Prep: 1-1/2 hours Bake: 35 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    16 servings


  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1-3/4 cups sugar, divided
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 12 ounces white baking chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 7 tablespoons shortening
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup apricot preserves
  • 1 cup sliced fresh strawberries
  • Additional sliced fresh strawberries


  • Separate eggs; let eggs stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Line two greased 9-in. round baking pans with parchment and grease the paper; set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, cream butter and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Split vanilla bean and scrape seeds into creamed mixture; discard bean. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition.
  • In a small bowl with clean beaters, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining sugar, about 2 tablespoons at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form. Fold a fourth of egg whites into the batter, then fold in remaining whites. Transfer to prepared baking pans.
  • Bake 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  • Place chocolate in a small bowl. In a small saucepan, bring cream just to a boil. Pour over chocolate; whisk until smooth. Cool, stirring occasionally, to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Beat with an electric mixer until ganache is double in volume, about 2 minutes.
  • For buttercream, in a small bowl, combine sugar and cream of tartar. Place egg whites in a double boiler or metal bowl over simmering water; stir in the sugar mixture.
  • Constantly whisk egg mixture until mixture reaches 120-130°. (Do not overheat.) Stirring gently, keep the egg white mixture at 120-130° for 2 minutes. Immediately transfer to a mixing bowl. With a whisk attachment, beat egg white mixture on high speed for 5 minutes. Reduce speed; beat 5 minutes longer or until cool and stiff. Transfer to a large bowl.
  • In the same mixing bowl with whisk attachment, beat butter, shortening and vanilla until light and fluffy. With a spatula, stir a fourth of the egg white mixture into creamed mixture until no white streaks remain. Fold in remaining egg white mixture until combined. If frosting is not completely smooth, attach paddle beater to mixer and beat on low speed for about 1 minute.
  • Cut each cake horizontally into two layers. Place bottom layer on a serving plate; spread with half of ganache. Top with another cake layer. Spread with apricot preserves; top with sliced strawberries. Place third cake layer on top; spread with remaining ganache. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread buttercream over top and sides of cake. Top with additional sliced strawberries.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 680 calories, 41g fat (23g saturated fat), 156mg cholesterol, 227mg sodium, 72g carbohydrate (50g sugars, 1g fiber), 8g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • smohme
    Feb 3, 2019

    Cake is good but very dense. No they what I was looking for in a cake.

  • Kim
    Mar 5, 2018

    Delicious cake. I only used the cake recipe. I did not need the ganache or filling. Not dense.Will definitely make again.

  • ReneeLo
    Jan 27, 2018

    I’ve got a question, for the buttercream frosting, the 1 cup sugar is powdered sugar right???

  • HTrenerry
    Jan 27, 2016

    The cake was very dense and time consuming to make. Flavored together are okay but pretty sweet. ( I love sweet, just not this time). I am an experienced cake decorator for over 25 years now and this is not one I would ever make again. I found it expensive to make as well, with the vanilla bean, white chocolate chips and heavy cream. Trial run continues until I find the perfect recipe for my daughters' wedding cake.

  • Armstras07
    Jun 15, 2015

    I'm not sure what the deal is with the cake batter it was extremely dense. The Ganache on the other hand tasted really good, but wouldn't firm up enough to hold during the icing process. I tried everything. I will however revisit this recipe and see if there is something in the process that went wrong. I think just looking at the picture it is a really good looking recipe. I also attempted to use a cherry filling instead of the apricots and strawberry.

  • cjaldana211
    Jan 31, 2015

    I am confused - do mix step 2 & step 3 to make the cake batter ? I'm just trying to make the cake itself

  • Beecmom
    Nov 11, 2014

    Devoted one morning testing 3 sponge cakes. Two of them were suppose to be the "best cake ever" but I didn't like them at all. This recipe is the best and can't be beat! For the filling, I substituted it with strawberry compote. It was a hit - made it twice already and it becomes easier every time you make it.

  • Tucnak
    Oct 16, 2014

    hi, how much 1/2 cup ?? 125ml??

  • Gaone
    Aug 1, 2014


  • Tami12
    Aug 1, 2014

    Can't wait to try