Orchard Fresh Peach Cake

Fresh peaches are such a delight! I have been using them in cobblers, fried pies and ice cream, but now it’s time for cake. I love this recipe from Farm Fresh Southern Cooking (page 192) and used it with strawberries in the spring. It has little bits of chopped fruit in every bite and makes a dramatic presentation. Use any white frosting your heart desires. For this occasion, I used Cream Cheese Frosting. You don’t even have to do that. It is just as delicious with sweetened whipped cream!

Orchard Fresh Peach Cake
Yield: 12-14 servings
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
2 cups sugar
4 eggs, separated
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup half and half
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup finely chopped peaches
Peach slices for garnish
Frosting


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 9-inch round cake pans.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter, shortening and sugar at high speed for 3 minutes. Reduce mixer speed to low and add the egg yolks one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside. In a large measuring cup, stir together the buttermilk, milk, half and half and vanilla. Beginning and ending with the flour mixture, add to the batter alternately with the buttermilk mixture. Do not overmix. Set aside.
Add the egg whites to the bowl of an electric mixer and whip on high speed around 4 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Gently fold into the batter with the chopped peaches. Divide evenly among the prepared cake pans.
Bake 25 minutes or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on wire racks in the pans for 15 minutes. Remove from the pans and cool completely on wire racks before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting
Yield: about 4 cups
12 ounces cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
5-1/4 cups powdered sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the cream cheese and butter at high speed for 4 minutes or until fluffy. Decrease the mixer speed to low and add the sugar and vanilla. Mix well and frost cooled cake.

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