The history of cake dates to ancient times. The ancient Egyptians were the first culture of advance baking skills. The precursors of modern cakes(round one with icing)were first baked in Europe in the mid-17th century. Even though the first icings were a boiled sugar and egg whites I can remember my mother making it MANY times. Gateau is the French word for cake. Torte is the German word for cake. Cakes are served on special occasions because they represent OUR BEST CULINARY offering honoring our most loved people. THE MESSAGE REMAINS CONSTANT, CAKES SAY: YOU ARE IMPORTANT AND I LOVE YOU!
1Line 3 buttered round cake pans.
In large bowl with an electric mixer cream butter with the sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract. Alternating, add the flour, baking powder, salt and about one cup at the time with the milk ending with the flour.
2In a bowl whip the egg whites with the cream of tartar and salt until they just form stiff peaks.
Stir one third of them in the above referred batter and then FOLD THE REST thoroughly in the batter.
Divide the batter among the prepared pans and bake 325 degrees in the middle of the rack for about 25-35 minutes.
3For the filling chop the raisins and pecans.
You will reserve a little amount of the icing in order to be able to mix it and spread it with the fruits between the layers.
4For the icing put the sugar and water in a saucepan and bring the mixture to a boil stirring until the sugar is dissolve and boil until it reaches 248 degree on a candy thermometer. As you already know as an expert, take a spoonful and drop it in cool water and you will see when it forms a little ball.
5While the syrup is boiling take a large bowl and put your egg whites in and start to whip them just until they hold SOFT PEAKS and then start to add SLOWLY YOUR SYRUP MIXTURE beating constantly until you will realize that the icing is soft, glossy and holds. Notice that you may not have to add all your syrup mixture ...if you do it for the first time I would suggest that you practice at least 2 times making the icing...
6Now it is time to ice this mountainous WHITE SNOWY cake. It reminds me a my country in the winter where the mountain are all white with a blanket of snow.
7Notice that as I previously said, take a bit of the icing and mix with the fruit.
What makes this cake different is the icing mixed with fruits between the layers.
Here is a recipe for another kind of filling.
8Filling number 2:
2 cups of sugar
1/2 cup of milk
1 cup of either figs or dates
1 cup of chopped pecans
1 cup of raisins
Cook milk and sugar until it reaches a syrupy sauce.
Beat filling until creamy and add the fruits. Stir well and ice the layers.
This cake is NORMALLY A 3 LAYERS CAKE...but many times it is done in a 2 layers .I prefer a 3 layers cake high, big and gigantic like a Canadian Mountain.
9This cake is found in Unites State particularly in Charleston, South Carolina. Some believe that it was originated from there.