Matcha For Baking
This Matcha Cake with Raspberries was one of those ideas that came to my mind fully formed as a visual as I was thinking about something new and elegant but also colorful for the Easter holiday. I added matcha, powdered green tea, to meringue to add color as well as temper the meringue’s sweetness for the frosting.
The idea was to pipe the pale green meringue to evoke blades of grass. Next I thought about shape. I almost made a round cake, which might have looked more like a basket, but I became drawn to the idea of a rectangle.
I suppose this might look a bit more like a flower box. Speaking of which, fresh flowers would look really pretty in lieu of the berries, but the fruit adds great flavor and texture. Perhaps consider sprinkling a few fresh flowers among the berries as a possible variation?
The cake inside is a yellow cake layered with a filling of lemon curd. Red raspberries would have been fine alone, but the blend with the golden berries, with their warm, rosy hue takes this to a next level.
Take advantage of certain do-ahead components. The lemon curd can be made a week ahead and the cake can be baked a day before assembling. For more matcha recipes, check out our Matcha White Chocolate Cookies and Matcha Shortbread. (PS: Can you believe these images were taken in Massachusetts on Christmas Day! Who says weather patterns aren’t changing!) I used a cooking grade matcha from Aiya Matcha for this recipe.
- 2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- Scant 1 ¾ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into small pieces
- 1¼ cups sugar
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- ¾ cup whole milk, at room temperature
- 1 batch Lemon Curd, chilled and ready to spread
- 1 batch Fluffy White Frosting
- 2 teaspoons matcha, sifted through a fine meshed strainer, or more to color and taste
- Pastry bag
- 1M tip
- 3, 6-ounce containers raspberries, preferably a combination of red and golden
- For the Cake: Position the rack in the center of your oven. Preheat to 350˚ F. Coat the insides of two 8-inch by 4-inch rectangular loaf pans with nonstick spray, line bottoms with a strip of parchment that extends beyond each short end, then spray parchment.
- Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl to combine and aerate; set aside.
- In a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the sugar gradually and beat until very light and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the bowl once or twice. Beat in vanilla.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down after each addition, allowing each egg to be absorbed before continuing. Add the flour mixture in four additions, alternating with the milk. Begin and end with the flour mixture and beat briefly until smooth. Divide batter evenly in pans.
- Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick shows a few moist crumbs. The cake will have begun to come away from the sides of the pan. Cool on rack for 10 minutes. Unmold, peel off parchment, and place directly on rack to cool completely. The cake is now ready to fill and frost. Alternatively, double wrap in plastic wrap; store at room temperature if assembling within 24 hours.
- For Assembling and Frosting: Level both loaves if needed and torte each one in half horizontally. Place one layer on display plate and cover with a layer of lemon curd about a generous ⅛th-inch thick, top with cake layer then repeat with lemon curd, third layer of cake and final layer of lemon curd. Top with last layer of cake.
- Make Fluffy White Frosting and when finished sift beat in 2 teaspoons matcha at the very end. Beat until matcha is completely combined within the frosting – it should look like a solid homogenous pale green. Taste frosting and add more matcha if you like for flavor and color (sifting first).
- Place tip in piping bag and fill three-quarters full with matcha frosting. Pipe a solid zigzag of frosting on top to cover cake (see image without berries). Then pipe vertical ridges all the way around the cake starting at base of cake and trailing off about one inch above surface of cake to create the “tips of grass”. Cake may sit at this point at cool room temperature for the better part of the day. Arrange berries on cake right before serving.
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