Get your swagger on with this Tokyo Swag Cake! Full of color and flavor, this cake has chestnuts in the batter and topped with an unapologetic creamier-creamy fancy frosting.
We may be getting over the food hangover that is Thanksgiving, so why not start the holiday season on a fresh footing? Tokyo Swag Cake can fill that order. In the West, chestnuts are tied to the Christmas holiday season, but in Japan chestnuts are readily integrated into the cuisine. From rice, to dumplings, the chestnut is seen in any number of dishes—morning, noon, and night. Chestnuts do make an appearance in desserts as well. Heck the chestnut flavor is so common, that Oreo’s have a chestnut cream flavor in Japan. America gets brownie batter oroes, Japan gets chestnut oreos!
Unlike the pecans or walnuts which are edible raw, chestnuts need to be cooked. When cooked, the chestnuts take on a luscious, sweet flavor.
So why Tokyo Swag? If you don’t follow me on Instagram (which you should), you’ll see me post my nail manicures, gel manicures to be exact. Tokyo Swag is the name of a color line of gel nail colors. The vibrant red, blue, yellow, orange, and pink are vibrant yet versatile. The colors aren’t so much neon as they are intense and eye catching.
Making cakes is a chicken and egg sort of thing. But when I saw these gel nail colors, I knew I had to make a cake in color line’s name sake.
The cake is rich thanks to the use of egg yolks and a ratio of buttermilk and sour cream. Chopped chestnuts are folded into the batter to give a soft bite.
The frosting, has a higher than usual ratio of fat to powdered sugar. The frosting is the soul mate for this cake, it’s essential, there can’t be substitutions.
I jerked around with a design for a while and settled on the rustic paint brush strokes. I applied the colors with the back of a clean spoon. The fancy restaurant plating swooshing technique is the same motion needed to decorate this cake.
Primary colored sprinkles tie all of the colors together. And off course, a cool diamond topper!
- For the Tokyo Swag Cake:
- 3 ¼ cups plus 1 tablespoon cake flour, sifted
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon fine salt
- 2 ½ cups granulated sugar
- 1 cups (2 sticks, 8 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 1 ¼ cup buttermilk, room temperature
- ½ cup sour cream, room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 9 egg yolks, room temperature
- yellow, green, and blue gel food coloring
- 1 ¼ cups chestnuts, chopped
- For the Creamy Frosting:
- 1 cup (2 sticks, 8 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 20 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 ½ tablespoons vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon fine salt
- 1 ½ pounds powdered sugar, sifted
- pink, orange, yellow, green, red, and blue gel food coloring
- To assemble the Tokyo Swag Cake:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease three 8-inch cake pans with baking spray, set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer sift the 3 ¼ cups cake flour,, baking powder, salt, sugar, and turmeric. Mix on a low speed for 10 seconds to just stir all of it together.
- With the mixer’s speed on low, add the butter a few tablespoons at a time. The mixer should look like lumpy sand.
- Add the oil and buttermilk and beat the mixture on a medium speed for 2 minutes.
- Meanwhile whisk the sour cream, vanilla, and egg yolks together.
- Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- With the mixer on low, add the egg yolk mixture in two batches, mixing until just incorporated. Raise the speed to medium and beat for a final 1 ½ minutes.
- Toss the chopped chestnuts with 1 tablespoon flour.
- Stir the batter by hand to ensure everything is incorporated. Divide the batter into three bowls, tint one blue, one green, and one yellow. Fold in chestnuts into each color to ensure each layer has equal amounts of chestnuts.
- Divide the cake among the prepared pans and bake for 25 to 27 minutes, rotating halfway. A tooth pick inserted should come out with moist crumbs. DO NOT OVER BAKE. Invert immediately onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- In a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese on a medium speed until smooth and lump free, about 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl down as needed.
- Add in vanilla and salt.
- With the mixer on low, slowly add the powdered sugar. Refrigerate until needed.
- Tint ½ of the frosting pink and the remaining orange, yellow, red, green, and blue.
- If cake layers have domes, use a serrated knife to gently level them off. Fill the layers with orange frosting. Crumb coat the cake with pink. Chill for 15 minutes. Finish with a thicker final layer. Chill 15 more minutes. Use the back of a spoon to swoosh the colors on the bottom of the cake. Top with sprinkles.