Ritz Cracker Cake
 
 
Serves: 1 3-layer 8-inch cake
Ingredients
For the Fluffy Yellow Cake:
  • 3 ¾ cups cake flour
  • 2 ½ cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ cups buttermilk, room temperature
  • 15 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons butter extract
  • 9 egg yolks and 4 egg whites, room temperature
For the Ritz Cracker Paste:
  • 1-whole 12-ounce box butter crackers
  • ½ cup milk powder
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fine salt
  • ½ cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ to ⅔ cup heavy cream
  • 1 to 1⅓ cup whole milk
For the Ritz Cracker Frosting:
  • 1 ½ cups (3 sticks, 12 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 ½ pounds powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon fine salt
  • Ritz Cracker Paste (recipe precedes), brought to room temperature
Instructions
To make the Fluffy Yellow Cake:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 3 8-inch cake pans with baking spray, set aside.
  2. Whisk together flour, 2 ¼ cups granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. In another bowl whisk together buttermilk, melted butter, oil, extracts, and egg yolks, set aside.
  3. In a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat egg whites at medium-high until foamy, about 30 seconds, gradually add remaining ¼ cup granulated sugar and raise speed to high, beating until soft medium peaks form, they should still be moist. Transfer egg whites to another bowl.
  4. In the now clean and empty mixing bowl and whisk attachment, add dry ingredients. With mixer's speed on low, gradually pour in wet mixture until incorporated. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl down. Return mixer's speed to medium-low, beating until smooth and incorporated, about 10 to 20 seconds.
  5. Using a rubber spatula, stir in ⅓ of the egg white mixture, this will lighten the batter. Fold in remaining egg whites until no streaks remain.
  6. Divide batter between prepared pans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, rotating halfway. A toothpick inserted should come out mostly clean with a few moist crumbs. Do not over bake these cakes!
  7. Let cakes rest in pans for 5 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight, this will create a moister crumb.
To make the Ritz Cracker Paste:
  1. Combine Ritz cracker crumbs, milk powder, sugar, and salt in a bowl.
  2. In another bowl, whisk butter and cream together. Using a food processor blend the dry with the wet. Gradually drizzle in milk until a smooth paste forms, scrape the sides of the processor to get everything incorporated. The paste will have a consistency of brownie batter. Pour into a container, refrigerating until it hardens, about 1 to 2 hours.
To make the Ritz Cracker Frosting:
  1. With a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment beat butter on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. On low speed add brown sugar, powdered sugar, and salt. Raise speed to medium-high, beating until pale in color and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add in room temperature Ritz Cracker Paste, raise speed back to medium-high, beating for 3 minutes. Refrigerate until ready to assemble.
To Assemble Ritz Cracker Cake:
  1. Spoon frosting onto a cake board. Secure first cake layer on, apply frosting evenly Repeat this process with remaining layers. Apply a thing crumb coat of frosting, chill for 10 minutes, and then apply a final thicker cake layer. Chill for 15 minutes. Decorate with remaining frosting.
Notes
Cake recipe adapted from Cook's Illustrated, Butter cracker paste adapted from Momofuku Milk Bar
Recipe by Layer Cake Parade at http://layercakeparade.com/ritz-cracker-cake/